Within the park are well-preserved ruins from both ancient Rome and the Renaissance. These include the important aboveground aqueducts that once brought water to the city, Acquedotti Claudio and Anio Novus from 52 AD and Acquedotto Felice (Aqueduct Felix) from 1590 AD. Built with a mixture of brick, stone, and Roman concrete, ancient aqueducts used gravity alone to move water into the urban area, supplying water mostly for public baths and latrines. Although Rome had an impressive 11 aqueduct systems by the 3rd century AD, the untouched natural park offers one of the best views of aqueduct design and construction in all of Rome. Visitors are able to touch and examine the structures from up close.
Another archeological site of interest is the Villa dei Sette Bassi (also known as the Villa della Via Tuscolana). The villa is one of the largest in suburban Rome at over 37,000 square metes and dates back to the 1st century AD. Although the site is currently in ruins, there are foundations for a series of houses, temples, and even a hippodrome. Due to its poor condition, visitors must request access from the National Roman Museum.
The Regional Park of the Appian Way surrounding the aqueducts is home to a large collection of Roman, early Christian, and Jewish tombs and catacombs, as well as the most preserved road of ancient Rome, the Via Appia. On the outskirts of the park it is not uncommon to see herds of sheep and other agricultural activity.
The park has been featured in several films and television series, including La Dolce Vita, La Grande Bellezza, and HBO’s Roma. The park is open year round, 24/7, and can be reached by public transit via the stop for the nearby film studio Cinecittà.
Pictures from ShockWave2.