06 September 2006
Tuesday we made a day trip of visiting Terracina, an ancient Roman port city located about halfway between Roma and Napoli on the Tirreno coast. This town has an upper centro storico that combines Roman and medieval structures and includes a Duomo (cathedral) uniquely built into a Roman temple. Some structures were uncovered after bombing during WWII including a section of the Appian Way in Piazza Municipo, and part of the Roman forum.
The lower section of town is built around the port which is packed with power boats, and the town has many of the mundane post-war construction visible across Italy. On the south side of town is Pisco Montano, which is a large rock outcropping that juts upward and out towards the sea.
Overlooking Terracina is Monte Sant’ Angelo with the remains of a Roman temple, providing spectacular views of Terracina and the Tirreno Sea. Visiting the hilltop gives you the opportunity to quietly walk around, under, and on these ruins, including an impressive arcaded area below. Most of the time we were the only people there. The cool breeze blowing up the cliff face is welcome on a hot summer day.
While in town we saw signs for a winery with a local wine we have enjoyed before, and on our way back to Anzio made a small detour to experience buying vino sfuso (literally “loose wine”). In Italy you can often buy direct from the winery, the wine straight from the barrel, decanted into your own bottle or one they provide. Since we were unprepared and did not have a litre bottle we opted to buy one of their 3 litre glass bottles and brought back fresh Moscato di Terracina secca. The three litres of wine cost 5 Euro and the bottle 90 cents.