"Visitor Center at the Roman Imperial Fora/Forums (Fori Imperiali), Rome" submitted by RomeTour Editorial Team and last updated on Wednesday 11th January 2012
The first Visitor Center in Rome, a place that offers information, documentation and a meeting point for tourists and visitors, the starting point for a series of guided tours of the Imperial Fora and other sites.
Set up in a delightful courtyard obtained by reclaiming a former municipal dump, the Visitor Center is provided with an information counter, an area for the display of archeological findings, information panels on the Imperial Fora, a room for video screenings, CD-ROM consultation points, a didactic lab for elementary and secondary school students.
The virtual reconstruction of the basilica Ulpia is well worth a visit, access to it is from the entrance courtyard. The Roman Forum is the oldest part of the city of Rome.
The Imperial Forums were an important center for religion and politics in Rome. Political discussions were held here, justice was administered and there was also room for education and libraries. The Imperial Fora were very important public and ceremonial areas in Rome. These areas had practical use, especially when the population of Rome began to grow rapidly. They also provided more room for government, business, religious worship, and gave the Emperors notoriety and immortality.
The archaeological site of the Imperial Forums is one of the largest areas in the world where digging, research and studies are still under way. It is here that the Roman civilisation began and evolved throughout the centuries . As Italian nationals and as citizens and administrators of Rome, they have the mission of preserving and disseminating knowledge of these records of the past. But this is not the heritage of a single city or nation; it is the heritage of mankind. Now, thanks to state-of-the-art communication technologies, this wealth can be brought to the fruition of the entire world.
Many other Fora were built when the Roman Forum became too small for the ever increasing Roman population. Today, they are called Imperial Fora. Many of these Fora are now in ruins because during the Middle Ages they were used as quarries, using the old stones to build new buildings. Today, if you walk from the Piazza Venezia towards the Coliseum, along the via dei Fori Imperiali, you can imagine what Rome must have been like under the rule of the Emperors.
The stratigraphical research taking place inside the Forums is revealing more consistently that everything is still at the phase between the XI and XII centuries when the site was abandoned and began the phases of collapse, plundering and stealing, and the desperate reutilization of antique materials began. When the phase of destruction ended, cultivation and the formation of orchards began, where there still lies an invaluable treasure!
Layout of the Roman Imperial Fora/Forums (Fori Imperiali):
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Via dei Fori Imperiali. In front of the church of SS. Cosma and Damiano
Metro: Colosseo. Keep to the right side of the street
Open everyday 9.30am-7.30pm.