22 Hotels in Paestum, Italy
Paestum is a small village of the Campania region, situated in the Piana del Selle, a wide flat area, and it is famous for its archaeological site, considered one of the most important and well-preserved of Europe.
Poseidonia, as it was known, was founded by Greeks from Sybaris in the sixth century b.C. and later in 273 it was conquered by the Romans, who latinized the name. But after the fall of the empire a combination of malaria and Saracen raids had decimated the population and left the building deserted and gradually overtaken by forest. The site was rediscovered in the XVIII century during the building of a road through here.
The ancient city was encircled by a wall of a circumference of 4,5 km, on which four doors were opened. The main street is the via Sacra on which the most important public buildings were concentrated. The Temple of Neptune, going back to the V century b.C., is one of the best preserved Doric temples of Europe, with only its roof and parts of the inner wall missing. At a short distance lies the Basilica of Hera, than in origin was a temple, which retains the double row of columns.
Near the forum rises, of the roman period, that is an open space and the buildings around are mere foundations. Then we find the Temple of Atena, the smallest of the three, but interesting because the frame conserve the decorations.
The splendid National Archaeological Museum of Paestum holds Greek and Roman finds from the site and around. The museum conserves bronze vases, statues but above all the painted tombs. The most famous is the Tomb of the Diver, with the graceful works of art representing banqueting and a diver in mid-plunge, that means the passage from life to dead.
On the first floor, which is devoted to Roman finds, there are magnificent statues, reliefs and sarcophagus.
Paestum is also a bathing resort with a beautiful, sandy beach, long nearly 15 km, surrounde by a pine wood.
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Destinations near Paestum, ItalyAgropoli (6,64 km)
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About Paestum, Italy
Longitude:15° 0' 0'' E (15)