Ancient Ostia

Posted on Posted in Around Rome

TOUR INFO

Including  Decumanus Maximus, Baths of Neptune, Roman Theatre, Communal
Duration  4 Hours
Tour not available on Mondays
Car and driver can be arranged on request
It is also possible traveling by train.

The wonderful ruins of the Roman town of Ostia, only 30 minutes away from Rome,  surrounded by Roman pines and flat coastal plains, make a great excursion from the dusty hustle and bustle of Rome.

King Ancus Marcius, according to legend, founded a port town in the 7th century BC and named it Ostia after the ostium or mouth of the Tiber. Rome was very dependent on this one connection with the sea, because all its essential commodities - but especially grain - were transported from Ostia along the Via Ostiensis. Rome's dependence on Ostia  was good news for the port's  inhabitants. Imported goods from both the West and East, which Rome devoured, were traded here and the population enjoyed a luxurious standard of living.

At the entrance to Ostia, visitors follow the Decumanus Maximus, the same main road  as the Ancient Romans, which leads through the city center. Along the main roadBath of Neptune, named after their glorious mosaic floor, and the Theatre, warranting a visit for the splendid views offered by its upper tiers. Underneath the tiers, there would have been taverns and shops.  The Decumanus Maximus leads to the Forum, where citizens met to gossip and justice was dispensed by city officials, and the Capitolium, Ostia's largest temple, which was dedicated to Jupiter, Juno and Minerva. The workers of Ostia livid in Insulae, blocks of flats three  or four stories high. The House of Diana, is one of the smarter one and it is well preserved. An interesting insight into the sort of housing used by ancient Romans, it also incorporated and old tavern, Thermopolium, on the ground floor, complete with a marble counter on which customers were served their meals and wine.