When I travel I always try to visit a site or monument declared by UNESCO World Heritage Site. These visits never disappoint because they admire the wonders of art, architecture, or archeology that are unique and important for the history of peoples' culture. The sites included in the UNESCO list in Italy are4: it is the country with the largest number of Unesco sites followed by China (52) and Spain (46).
Today I show some photos that I took to Cerveteri. The archaeological site a necropolis near Cerveteri, known as Banditaccia, located a few kilometers from Rome, has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2004 with this motivation :
“Etruscan Necropolises of Cerveteri and Tarquinia
These two large Etruscan cemeteries reflect different types of burial practices from the 9th to the 1st century BC, and bear witness to the achievements of Etruscan culture. Which over nine centuries developed the earliest urban civilization in the northern Mediterranean. Some of the tombs are monumental, cut in rock and topped by impressive tumuli (burial mounds). Many feature carvings on their walls, others have wall paintings of outstanding quality. The necropolis near Cerveteri, known as Banditaccia, contains thousands of tombs organized in a city-like plan, with streets, small squares and neighbourhoods. The site contains very different types of tombs: trenches cut in rock; tumuli; and some, also carved in rock, in the shape of huts or houses with a wealth of structural details. These provide the only surviving evidence of Etruscan residential architecture. The necropolis of Tarquinia, also known as Monterozzi, contains 6,000 graves cut in the rock. It is famous for its 200 painted tombs, the earliest of which date from the 7th century BC.”
Description is available under license CC-BY-SA IGO 3.0
(Source : http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1158 )
The beauty of this incredible and vast archaeological site is also in the natural environment that surrounds it and contains it. As often happens environment and archeology, when as they are in this case together, they can create truly unique sites for both cultural and landscape interest.
If you are in Rome I suggest you do this excursion. The archaeological area also has an efficient reception system with guided tours and interesting and evocative multimedia reconstructions even inside the tombs.
Thanks for your time