Lido di Ostia and Ostia Antica, contrary to the same name, are connected only by their location: two cities with a completely different history are located 30 km from Rome and 6 km from each other. But you can have time to relax on one of the beaches of Lido di Ostia in one day and feel like an ancient Roman in Ostia Antica. In this article, we will talk about both places, why they are remarkable and how to get there.
One of the first colonies of the Roman Empire, Ostia Antica (Ostia Antica) was founded in the 7th century BC. Fourth Caesar of Rome Ank Marcius. At least, the writings of the ancient historians of Libya, Cicero and Dionysius of Halicarnassus say so. Ostia got its name due to its location at the mouth of the Tiber (ostia translated from Latin means "mouth"). Having grown to a large seaport, during the heyday of the Roman Empire, Ostia became the main center of Roman trade.
The ancient city covers an area of about 34 hectares
However, even before the beginning of the Middle Ages, Ostia gradually began to lose its importance due to frequent floods and the spread of malaria, and with a drop in sea level the city was at all 3 km from the water. During the early Middle Ages, a series of heavy floods covered the city with sand and silt, which is why Ostia remained in this "preserved form" to this day.
Re-discovered Ostia Antica only at the end of the XIX century, and at the beginning of the XX century, thanks to excavations, the ancient city was liberated from under tons of sand. Today Ostia Antica in Italy is an interesting historical monument that acquaints tourists with the daily life of the ancient Romans.
After World War II, Lido di Ostia hit a real tourist boom
City Lido di Ostia (Lido di Ostia) appeared much later than his legendary brother. After draining the swamps in 1884, the poor inhabitants of Ravenna moved here. After 40 years, a railway was laid in the direction of Lido di Ostia, and the Romans began to go to the sea on vacation, but a real tourist boom covered the city after the Second World War. Today, during the beach season, not only the Romans themselves, but also tourists from all over the world come to Lido di Ostia.
How to get to Ostia
To get to Ostia, it is most convenient to use the metro. At the Piramide ground station (line B), without leaving the subway, follow the Lido sign and go to the Porta San Paolo train station. From here, electric trains run every 15 minutes along the Roma-Lido route. Travel time will take from 20 to 30 minutes.
Trains from Porta San Paolo Station to Roma-Lido leave every 15 minutes
If you intend to admire the ruins of an ancient city, you need to go to the Ostia Antica station, cross the blue bridge and follow the signs directly. Five minutes later, you will be at the entrance to the archaeological complex.
If the ultimate goal is the sea, then you need to go to the Lido Centro station, from where the resort coast begins, or at any of the following stops up to the final Roma Ostia Lido. All stations are located along the promenade and everywhere you can find beaches. From Lido Centro station to the sea, walk 10-15 minutes on foot.
From the railway station to the beach can be reached on foot in 10-15 minutes
To get to Ostia from Fiumicino Airport by public transport, you need to get to Rome's main Termini train station, change to line B and get to Piramide station, and then proceed according to the already described scheme.
However, in order not to ride back and forth, it is more convenient to order a taxi from the airport through a specialized service to your arrival - after all, Ostia is very close to Fiumicino and getting to it via Rome is an unnecessary circle.
Getting to Ostia with your own or rented car is also not difficult: the city is located in close proximity to the so-called Big Ring Road (GRA). Three main routes lead from it to Ostia: Via del Mare (exit number 28), Autostrada Roma Fiumicino A91 (exit number 28) and Via Cristoforo Colombo (exit number 27). To save on car rental, it is better to rent a car through a large price comparison service.
Hotels and lodging
The coast closest to Rome, Lido di Ostia during the swimming season is crowded with vacationers. This is especially true for weekends, when many Romans try to escape from the city to the sea. Therefore, it is better to book accommodation in Ostia in advance - a few weeks, or even months before the trip. So the choice will be richer and the prices more pleasant.
Climate and weather
Despite the fact that the swimming season in the city begins in mid-May and ends in October, most Lido di Ostia hotels in Italy are ready to receive guests year-round. Due to the mild climate here, even in winter, the thermometer does not drop below + 7C, and in the hot summer months the air stably warms up to + 26 + 30C.
Due to the mild climate and in winter in Ostia there is no lower than + 7C
What to see and do in Ostia
The first attraction awaits tourists even before entering Ostia Antica: the Papa Julius II castle, built at the end of the 15th century and is a vivid example of Italian militarism, rises off the Via del Mare highway.
Pope Julius II Castle was built at the end of the 15th century.
Archaeological Ostia Antika complex covers an area of about 34 hectares, but archaeologists claim that this is only 2/3 of the total area of the ancient city. You can find out what was on the territory of the present ruins in antiquity and see an approximate plan of the original structures at special English-language stands installed near each architectural object.
A walk in the ancient city will take at least three to four hours. It is most convenient to move along the main street Decumanus Maximus and periodically turn right and left on the side streets.
Main street Decumanus Maximus
The entrance to the city is marked by gates built in the 1st century BC. by order of Mark Tullius Cicero. In the square outside the gate, a statue of the winged goddess Minerva was found, which served as a decoration for the structure. Now, the plaster cast of the statue, installed in the square, reminds of the famous find.
Ostia Antica has many temples dedicated to the Roman gods. The most important of them - the Capitol - was erected in honor of Jupiter, Juno and Minerva in the II century. AD Therms decorated with mosaics depicting sea deities are no less famous. In the area of the Corporation you can also find mosaics representing the "marine" profession.
To this day, buildings of bakeries, mills and taverns are well preserved.
Another important building of the city is a theater that seats up to 4,000 spectators. Ostia Antica is also known as one of the first cities where multi-storey buildings - insuls - appeared. To this day, preserved buildings of bakeries, mills, taverns and many other structures for various purposes, including the necropolis of the Republic.
Lido di Ostia can not boast of so many attractions, but here you can find interesting places. In the center of the city is the Temple of Mary Queen of the World (Chiesa di Santa Maria Regina Pacis) with elegant Art Nouveau painting that adorns the interior walls of the temple.
Cathedral of Mary Queen of Peace is located in the heart of the city
Between the coast and the Castel Fusano pine forest in the Fisherman's Area (Borghetto dei Pescatori) you can see the whole process of fishing and admire the simple and cozy fishermen's houses. Pontile di Ostia promenade, which overlooks the sea and the nearby port of Fiumicino, is popular with vacationers.
Beaches in Ostia
Lido di Ostia in Italy is located on the Tyrrhenian Sea. The Italians themselves call the city "Lido di Roma", i.e. literally "beach of Rome". Throughout the summer, not only tourists come here, but the Romans themselves, filling numerous beaches to capacity. So it is much more pleasant to relax in Lido di Ostia in spring or autumn: there are fewer tourists, the city does not languish from the heat, but the water is warm, and hotels and restaurants work as usual.
Most of the beaches of Lido di Ostia are free, some charge a separate fee for sun loungers, umbrellas and changing rooms. If the beach belongs to the hotel, you will have to pay not only for the deck chair, but also for the entrance. However, given the number of vacationers, the latter option is more preferable and promises relaxation in a much more comfortable and relaxing environment.
In summer, not only tourists come to the beaches of Ostia, but the Romans themselves
One of the most popular beaches of Lido di Ostia with magnificent views is Gambrinus. Here only sunbeds, umbrellas and changing rooms are paid. The beach itself is sandy, and the entrance to the sea is gentle, so families with children often come here to relax. Capocotta beach will surprise you with rare plants and sand dunes, and the nearby Castel Fusano forest with mighty pine trees located nearby on the northern outskirts of Ostia.
Cafes and restaurants along the promenade offer a variety of seafood dishes. Along with establishments that focus on traditional Italian cuisine, you can also find several Indian and Oriental restaurants here.
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