The Eternal City – Rome 6 –The Appian Way

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Via Appia, built in 312 BC and eventually reaching 132 miles, is one of the earliest Roman roads.  These roads were built to connect Roman bases that were used to refresh and resupply troops out to the farthest edges of Rome’s empire.  They all began in Rome where there was a master list kept of all the destinations along the roads, hence, “all roads lead to Rome”.  A new road was built in 1784 and runs parallel to this one. The original road is now known as via Appia Antica.

DSC05569 C Capo di Bove ruins

We started our walk about 4 miles outside of Rome at the Roman baths of Capo di Bove. It was a bit confusing to get here. We took a bus but probably should have gotten off at an earlier stop. We had to walk a mile or so along a side road from the bus route over to the antique road. I’m sure there’s a better way but our lack of Italian caught up with us this time. We got here, though, and totally enjoyed our walk in the country!

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Hills were cut and valleys were filled in order to make the road as straight and level as possible. Many of the original stones are still here. When used by the Romans there was a layer of cement applied over the stones so the surface was really smooth. The road was slightly domed and gutters ran along the edges to keep the road from flooding.

There are homes along the road with pretty doorways and gates.

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We could imagine this same thing holding up Roman soldiers long ago!

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The ruins of ancient gates keep watch.

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The old Appian Way has been extensively restored. Where the road has broken down workers reuse the old stones for repairs.

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We walked 2 to 3 miles down the road then turned around and walked back, making our way past the Circus of Maxentius (an ancient race track.)

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Then we had a long wait at the side of the very busy new road for a return bus!

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DSC05637 CTo this day the Via Appia contains the longest stretch of straight road in Europe, 39 miles!

About graciamc

Gracia's Travels is a photo blog. I always take too many pictures on trips so I justify my compulsion with this blog! The blog is mostly photos - they tell the best part of the story. Please contact me if you would like to use any of my photos.
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6 Responses to The Eternal City – Rome 6 –The Appian Way

  1. Catherine says:

    Two of the first three doors that you photographed look like they have small bird houses above them — can that be?

    Catherine

    • graciamc says:

      Hi Catherine, I’m not sure but I think it’s just the way the roof tiles look above the doors. As sweet as that might be I can’t think they’d encourage birds right at the door. We once had a bird nest in a wreath on our front door. The poor mama bird went nuts every time someone came through the door and the eggs never did hatch. 😦

  2. gooddayrome says:

    Ciao Gracia! Seeing your photos makes me want to return to VAA. Maybe this spring when the flowers are in bloom. And Capo di Bove is a well-kept secret!

  3. Greetings! Quick question that’s entirely off topic.
    Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly?
    My blog looks weird when viewing from my iphone.
    I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to resolve this problem.
    If you have any suggestions, please share. Cheers!

    • graciamc says:

      I thought there was something in the wordpress Settings that I checked to get my blog to look the same on a phone as it does on a computer but I’ve looked all over the Dashboard and can’t find it. There is a Mobile option under Appearance. Enable mobile theme is checked “no” so that’s not it either. Sorry!

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