The allure of ancient Rome on the Flaminian Way from Rimini to Riccione
There are many ways to discover the ancient history that characterises the Rimini Riviera.
Its Roman origins are still evident in many cities and a new way to get to know them is with a departure from the Visitor Centre of Rimini, a “magnifying glass” on the cultural wonders of the area and a first introductory stop to the many cultural itineraries and opportunities that Rimini offers.
It is a multimedia and interactive itinerary, a touch wall in which the ideal reconstruction of Ariminum in the Imperial age is represented along with the points of interest of the city: the domus, the main streets, the monuments, itineraries and routes to be discovered through in-depth texts, images and games.
It is possible to create your own personal wishlists containing the selected itineraries and send the relative pdf to your mobile device, designing, directly inside the Visitor Centre, the itinerary of your liking, ready to become a personalised guide to Roman Rimini.
Once one has left the Visitor Centre, the first obligatory stop is the Arch of Augustus, the monument that represents the gateway to the Roman city for those who, starting from Rome, travelled the entire Flaminian Way.
Four heads of deities decorate the sides of the arch: Jupiter and Apollo are represented on the outer face and Roma and Neptune are seen on the side facing the city. The inscription at the top informs us that it was erected in 27 BC at the behest of the Senate and the people of Rome and celebrated Octavian Augustus and his work of reorganisation and restoration of the major consular roads in Italy, including the Flaminian Way.
For Roman history enthusiasts, we recommend going just few more kilometres to discover a history that is perhaps less known, but equally fascinating.
Continuing along the Flaminian Way in the direction of Riccione, one reaches the Miliario della “Colonnella”, (position) a 2.68 m high milestone in local stone with a quadrangular base and a truncated conical stem. It is located a few metres away from the church of S. Maria della “Colonnella” and indicated the first mile away (about 1,480 m) from the Arch of Augustus.
Today, following a restoration operation, the milestone is located inside a public parking lot, where excavations have been able to identify the route of the Flaminian Way and an area of a necropolis.
At this point, we recommend continuing on the Flaminian Way, where in Miramare, in the locality known as “Il Terzo” we find the milestone that marked the distance of three miles from Rimini (position). This milestone is also made of local stone and has a truncated conical upper part, resting on a quadrangular base that in ancient times must not have been visible because it was fixed under the ground.
It's not easy to find and locate it.
Those who take the main road will find it on the left, but for those who would like to stop for a photo, we recommend the parallel route with a small detour in via Stoccolma, where you will get to it this time on the right.
Riccione also preserves remains of ancient Rome. In the locality of San Lorenzo, also on the Flaminian Way, there is the Church of San Lorenzo in Strada.
In its garden there are some marble blocks and fragments of columns, which came to light during the renovation of the church itself, referable to a monumental building of the Roman era, probably a temple.
The church, built in the Middle Ages above the Roman temple, was dedicated to St. Lawrence and preserved in the “surname” in Strata, an antique name for Way, the memory of the close link of the area with the Flaminian Way.
And it is still on the Flaminian Way that we find the bridge over the Rio Melo (position), a stream that reaches the sea from Monte Colombo.
The bridge is located right on the Rio Melo promenade below the current level of the state road, and is one of the oldest historical relics in Riccione.
In fact, the Flaminian Way crossed the Rio Melo by means of this single-arched bridge. The Roman structure consists of the two side abutments made of stone blocks, on which the brick masonry part that is currently visible was built in the Middle Ages.
Finally, for this trip, we recommend a last stop at the “Luigi Ghirotti” Museum of the Territory, also in Riccione, where our journey documents the extensive history of the Roman settlement, rich in materials from the numerous farms in the area and from San Lorenzo in Strada.
Here we find materials that come both from the settlement of San Lorenzo in Strada, such as unguentaria (ointment containers), oil lamps, toiletries and coins, and from the villas and production facilities scattered throughout the area.