Cidade Romana de Ammaia

City - Roman Period (300)
The Roman city of Ammaia is located on a smooth hill facing east, in the São Salvador of Aramenha place, near the Apartura dam, in the Natural Park of São Mamede mountain range. The archaeological findings of this site have been known since the 16th century. The archaeological interventions identified structural and artefactual traces of a Roman city, with a long diachronic occupation, chronologically framed between the end of the 1st-century BC and the end of the 5th century AD. The archaeological interventions have been focused on the three main areas: the South Gate, the Forum and Bathhouses, which are the nucleus that can be currently visited. The Ammaia forum is located on a slope overviewing the southern area of the city, presenting a rectangular shaped area, of about 66 m x 99 m. At the south eastern end, structures which may present traces of the basilica and the curia are identified and the podium of a temple stands at the opposite end (rectangular structure with an area of 18m x 9m), in an elevated position. Close to the forum, several structural traces belonging to a thermal compound were recorded, such as a small tank covered with marble (frigidarium?) and a swimming pool (natatio). The south door, which was the main entrance of the city, as well as the road passage that linked Ammaia to Emerita Augusta (Mérida) were flanked by two circular towers that were attached to the walls (6m in diameter) and were connected by an arch (not preserved). Near this door, traces of a public square were found, paved with granite blocks. From the surface traces, aerial pictures and geophysical surveys, other urban structures were identified, particularly habitation structures, a possible amphitheatre at the foot of the slope in the western area of the city and a circus (or hippodrome) at the exit of São Salvador de Aramenha. This evidence reinforces the importance of this Roman city and its archaeological potential.

Overview

The site has a museum and a defined exhibition tour.

Visit conditions

Free entrance associated with a museological structure

Timetables

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday 9.00 - 12.30 14.00 - 17.30

Contacts

Documents

    How to get there? Best practices

    Best practices

    Good practices when visiting archaeological sites

    To visit an archaeological site is to connect with our origins, to understand our path and evolution as a species integrated in the environment, and to respect and safeguard our heritage so that future generations can also visit and enjoy it.

    Walking the paths and enjoying the structures and archaeological pieces that survived over time, fosters the understanding of what is different, but also of what is common among different populations: basically, what identifies us as Homo Sapiens.

    More than just vestiges and ruins of the past, archaeological sites showcase our capacity for creative thought, adaptation, interconnection, comprehension and resilience. Without these traits we would not have been successful as cultural beings participating in an ongoing evolutionary process. These sites also allow to consider choices made in the past thus contributing for decisions in the present to be made with greater awareness and knowledge.

    Archaeological sites are unique and irreplaceable. These sites are fragile resources vulnerable to changes driven by human development. The information they keep, if destroyed, can never be recovered again.

    As such, the Directorate-General for Cultural Heritage (DGPC) invites all visitors to enjoy the beauty and authenticity of these sites, while helping to preserve them for future generations by adopting the following set of good practices:

    • Respect all signs; 
    • Do not try to access fenced areas; 
    • Do not climb, sit or walk on archaeological structures and remains; 
    • Respect areas where archaeological excavations are being carried out, not disturbing them; 
    • Do not collect materials or sediments;
    • Do not write or make graffiti on archaeological structures; 
    • Put the garbage in appropriate containers. If none exist, take the garbage with you until you find a suitable container; 
    • Leave the archaeological site as you found it; 
    • Do not drive bicycles or motor vehicles over archaeological sites; 
    • Respect and protect the plants and animals that live in the areas surrounding archaeological sites;
    • Report signs of vandalism or destruction to DGPC or Regional Directorates of Culture (DRC);
    • Share the visiting experience and the archaeological sites, as a way of raising awareness to their preservation and making them better known;
    • Do not buy archaeological materials and report to public security authorities, DGPC or DRC, if you suspect that archaeological materials may be for sale.

    Further information:

    AIA / ATTA (2013) – Guide to best practices for archaeological tourism. 

    Raposo, J. (2016) – Código de conduta para uma visita responsável a sítios arqueológicos. In Sítios arqueológicos portugueses revisitados: 500 arqueossítios ou conjuntos em condições de fruição pública responsável. Al-madan, 2ª série, p. 20 – 77. 

    DGPC contacts

    Phone: +351213614200 | Email: informacaoarqueologica@dgpc.pt

     


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