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Santa Severa Castle between land and sea: culture, suggestion and romance

Santa Severa Castle, along the Aurelia in the municipality of Santa Marinella 50 kilometers from Rome, is a fascinating cultural hub to visit. Its imposing and solid appearance overlooking the sea holds stories, legends, traditions and hosts museums and cultural events, as well as a comfortable hostel for tourists.

The charm begins with its history, rising on the ancient territory of Pyrgi (7th/6th century B.C.), a city connected to ancient Caere, now Cerveteri.

In 2019, Time magazine places Santa Severa Castle on its list of the world’s 100 most beautiful tourist attractions

According to Christian tradition in 298 A.D. the young Severa was martyred here on the beach where a church was later built to honor her. The Saint’s remains were discovered in the foundations of the castle, which dates back to the 10th-11th centuries.

The first written document about it is from 1068, when with the church it was donated by Count Gerard of Galeria to the Abbey of Farfa. In 1130, at the behest of Antipope Anacletus II, the complex passed into the ownership of the basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls. Subsequent owners were the Orsini and Anguillara families.

The fortress is the heart of the village in which evidence of daily life from the period is still visible

In World War II the castle was occupied by the German army; today it belongs to the Lazio Region, which enhances its cultural vocation. Enclosed in a wall with towers, it is considered among the most important areas of historical and archaeological interest on the Tyrrhenian coast.

The Rocca building still shows traces of the military history of Santa Severa Castle, with the control function exercised since its construction. The machicolation and slit holes of a drawbridge are clearly visible, as are defensive elements such as the 16th-century bastion and moat.

In the Piazza della Rocca, the church of Santa Severa and a vast cemetery from medieval times with hundreds of burials have been discovered. However, the Rocca is only a part of the village where the daily life of the inhabitants took place among warehouses, shipyards and boathouses.

There is a beautiful view from the Saracen Tower that sweeps from Fiumicino and Santa Marinella to Cerveteri and Monti della Tolfa.

The many other attractions present that fill the visit with diverse interests

The cultural life of the area is entrusted both to the rich calendar of artistic events and to permanent archaeological, marine and territorial attractions. The Antiquarium of Pyrgi preserves the findings of more than forty years of excavations of the ancient port of Caere, well known in Etruscan times.

The Museum of the Sea and Ancient Navigation offers visitors seven rooms, in which numerous original artifacts and reconstructions of life at sea are displayed.

The Museum of the Territory houses ancient maps, agricultural tools and period photos including those of the reclamation of the southern Maremma. Finally, there is the Santa Severa Castle Museum, which tells the story of everything that happened on the site of the complex.

If so far we have covered the history and the assets present, we need to complete the description with the fantastic sunsets over the sea, and the incredible views all to be experienced.

The Castle is among the most visited tourist areas in Lazio, and its proximity to Rome makes it an ideal destination for a very pleasant outing.

With the Blog of Rome and Latium Region, Around Rome guides you to discover the territories for the pleasure of satisfying curiosity and putting culture at the service of people and businesses.

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Edited by il NETWORK | text Andrea Franchiniphoto Ezio Bocci

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