“I admired then, on the bottom of the water filling the port, a certain quantity of squared tombs almost all without their covers…”Emmanuele Mola
I’ve always found archeological sites fascinating. The first one I visited was the Acropolis in Athens. I was 8 years old and felt so small in front of the Parthenon. I would say that in that moment I felt, despite my young age, the contradiction between the finitude of the human being and the majesty of what humans are capable of.
I think once you are confronted to such contrast you perceive at the same time the sadness that comes with the finitude and the euphoria that derives from the majestic sight as if their presence in 2019 symbolised grandiosity.
I felt the same way in Egnatia, a Messapian town between Bari and Brindisi. This population was either Illiric (Balcan) or Cretan. Today the Messapian ruins are quite few because the Romans built another town on top of them but you can still see the very well preserved “Tomb of the Pomegranates”.
Only 10% of the Roman town has been dug out up to now and maybe it will remain like that forever given that some parts are beneath private soil…
Egnazia had two ports and some of the ruins are under sea water. snorkling and diving activities are available to see these ruins and I will definitely come back for this experience!
On a small hill by the sea you can visit the Acropolis where once stood the Temple of Venus.
In the rest of the town you can visit the ruins of the thermal baths, of the amphitheater, the houses, other temples and see the Via train (a road built at the time of the Emperor Trajan to intensify the commerce between the port of Brindisi and the west coast).
The final stop should be the museum where you can see vases, decorations, porcelains, utensils, mosaic pavements etc…
I highly suggest visiting Egnatia if you are in Apulia region on vacation to experience those mixed feelings that these ruins can evoke.
Stand on the Acropolis by the temple of Venus; look at the sea before you; turn your sight towards the two ports on each side where once small boats used to be; close your eyes; feel the breeze caressing your skin; listen to the waves crashing on the ancient walls of this long lasting town and imagine that centuries ago life took place in that exact spot where your feet are…
P.S.: more pictures on my instagram profile!