In December 1998, while working on the implementation of the new raylway linking Pisa and Genoa, were found the remains of a dozen Roman ships perfectly preserved, although in brittle wood. Conferences were organized, guided tours, and then the recovery was set, through two stages: the coverage of the vessels with a layer of fibreglass and the transportation in the restoration area.
The discovery is important because it allows to see in a new light the character of the landscape of the ancient city of Pisa, its port facilities up to now unknown, and consequently to trace the history of commercial traffic from the last decades of the first century A.D. to the fifth century D.C.
The historical sources revealed the image of a city built close to a coastal lagoon system, with the presence of two rivers, the Arno and the Auser with canals and minor waterways.
The Museum of Roman Ships of Pisa will be inaugurated in 2009, and will be a structure equipped with the most advanced multimedia technologies. Between 2005 and 2008 were held up work in restructuring of Arsenali Medicei, future home of the museum that will show in over then 6000 square meters, the remains of the ancient extraordinary vessels and their cargoes, returned to light just around 500 meters from Piazza del Duomo where the famous Leaning Tower stands.
It is expected that the museum can have an annual flow of more than 100 thousand visitors.
The excavation site of the Ancient Ships of Pisa is open to the public without reservation: Friday, Saturday: in the morning at 10:00 / 11:00 / 12:00 and in the afternoon 14:30 / 15:30.
Reservation is compulsory for groups and schools on the following days: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday
For reservations contact:
Phone 0039 320/7599708 – 0039 055/5121919 (Monday to Friday 10.00 – 17.00), Fax: 0039 055/3218017
online from the site www.coidra.it