4 Roman Sites to Explore in Tuscany

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Staying in any of the many wonderful villas in Tuscany gives visitors the opportunity to immerse in this splendid region of Italy in comfort and local style - using the villa as a base for excursions to sites of cultural and historical interest.
As in the rest of Italy, the Romans left their mark on the urban landscape here.
Even older yet are the remnants of the Etruscan people.
Siena, Fiesole, Lucca and Cosa all make excellent day-trips for those with an interest in ancient history staying in one of the villas in Tuscany.
Siena The city of Siena is known for its medieval Gothic architecture, its holy buildings and its incredible works of art, but its history has roots in the ancient past.
The first settlers were the Etruscans, although the Romans attributed its foundation to a son of their legendary culture-founder Remus.
Visitors to the city will see many statues and other images of the she-wolf suckling Romulus and Remus.
The Roman past is also visible on some of the buildings: in the Piazza del Campo, inscriptions and dappled red bricks are a testament to the city's early architects.
Great stores of both Etruscan and Roman art is housed in some of Siena's fine museums.
Those who indulge in a day-trip to Siena can enrichen their itinerary with these remnants of the city's early days.
Fiesole The town of Fiesole was first founded by the Etruscans, who called it Viesul, ViÅ?l or Vipsul.
In 283 BC, Faesulae - as it was then inscribed - was conquered by the Romans, who made it the site of a famous school of augurs.
Fiesole is an excellent destination for visitors with a specific interest in ancient history, as it has several sights: remains of Etruscan walls around the early city, Roman baths and the Roman theatre that remains in use to this day.
Numerous other, later historical sites, as well as the ever-enjoyable Italian restaurants, make Fiesole a day-trip to consider for those staying in one of the nearby villas in Tuscany.
Lucca Like other notable Roman sites in the region, Lucca was founded by the earlier Etruscans, although here there are also traces of Ligurian occupation.
Lucca became part of the Roman Empire in 180 BC.
Today the city is much-changed, but traces of its Roman past are visible: remains of the amphitheatre are visible in the Piazza dell'Anfiteatro, while the current grid-pattern of the historical centre preserves the Roman layout and the Piazza San Michele sits on the site of the old forum.
Cosa Cosa was a Latin colony founded in 273 BC under Roman influence, taking land from the Etruscans.
An Etruscan site, Cusi or Cosia, gave its name to the Roman town.
Cosa occupies a site overlooking the coast, making it a scenic excursion for anyone staying in one of the surrounding villas in Tuscany.
Though Cosa was never a major Roman town, its ruins - particularly its private houses - have been the subject of archaeology study, contributing to the present understanding of Roman colonial expansion during the Middle Republican period.
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