Known mainly as the cruise port that services Rome, the city of Civitavecchia is a destination unto itself although it is part of the larger Metropolitan City of Rome.
Here you can find an array of experiences dealing with history, the sea, cuisine, faith, and nature.
Beginning in the actual port you will see what is commonly referred to at Michelangelo’s Fort in English. Commissioned by Pope Julius II, who laid the first stone in the 15th century, and completed in the 16th century, the base was finished first and Michelangelo designed the top section of the tower, hence the name. As it is still be used by port authorities, visitors are limited to the courtyard and the outside, but it’s a fantastic place for selfies!
A short distance from the fort is the beautiful marina for small boats and the Pirgo Pier. Locals come here to take in a boat ride, relax in the sun, play in the water, or enjoy a fantastic seafood meal at one of the surrounding restaurants.
Take a break from the ocean and explore La Fresca, also known as the National Monument of Civitavecchia. This area’s beautiful pine forest is a perfect place to refresh yourself from the frantic pace of travel and to snap a few pics of Mother Nature in her glory. As the forest bumps up to the water there is some wonderful snorkeling here, or even tide pool exploring if you haven’t had enough of the water. You can even see some ancient Roman fish pools.
If you need further renewal, head to the Finconcella Thermal Baths, an ancient bathing site which has the same water source as when Emperor Trajan bathed many centuries ago! Locals still frequent these heated pools to take in their curative powers.
The ruins of the nearby Taurine Baths are also interesting to explore. While these baths are no longer operating, they provide a glimpse into the lifestyle of the ancient Romans.
As with many historic towns Civitavecchia’s Old Town area is also very picturesque and photogenic.
Every morning you can stroll among vendors at the morning market. Here you can find the freshest of vegetables, meats, seafoods, and other culinary delights.
After the market, believers can head to the Sanctuary of the Madonna of Pantano. In 2005, this small Madonna statue was made famous when it was believed she cried tears of blood.
These are just a few of the highlights of visiting Civitavecchia. As you can see, she offers her own attractions like her big sister, Rome, and it’s worth spending some time in this wonderful city.
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