Project Description


Bordering the National Park of Abruzzi, this area is probably one of the most authentic and non-touristy you can still find in Central Italy on the way south from Rome to Naples, Pompeii and the Amalfi coast.

This day trip is a rare opportunity to be part of a *real* excavation in a minor, but significant Roman town. The program is designed for visitors of all ages who want to “dig” but have limited time. It takes place in the ancient Privernum, a city described by Livy as a flourishing Volscian site, which was destroyed by the Romans in the late 4th century BC. The town recovered as a Roman colony from the 2nd century BC and the proximity to the important Appian Way made Privernum a key trade centre as the rich monuments brought to light had shown. Parallel roads traced blocks and planned districts, and  the town was equipped with temples, squares, luxurious mansions for the elite residents, spa, theatre and all the usual infrastructures.
Your experience will not be just a unique occasion to learn how archaeologists work and have a better understanding of other Rome’s excavations, but will be a real contribution to the work in progress in a site where “surprises” are still around the corner!
Transportation to Priverno is by local train ( approx 1 hr) where a driver will transfer you to the excavation site. After a brief orientation about the history of Privernum, how the site is excavated, the tools you will be using, where you will be digging and what you might find, you will work alongside an experienced archaeologist for the remainder of the morning until the moment of documenting when you take part in washing, sorting, measuring, and cataloguing whatever you hopefully found in your dig.

Complete your day trip:

curious wanderers

We suggest a stop at the medieval town of Sermoneta with the castle of the family Caetani, a Renaissance loggia, the cathedral of S. Maria Assunta and its romantic stone-paved alleys.  



archaeo fans

If the excavation is not enough for you, the day can go on with a visit to the the museum of Privernum, where you’ll admire the best finds of the site collected in the last years. The museum is housed in an elegant residence, Palazzo Valeriani, overlooking the main square of the current town. More than a thousand objects among statues, inscriptions, pottery and mosaics: probably the most amazing piece is a 5 mt long threshold depicting an Egyptian landscape in tiny tiles! 

spiritual travellers

Fossanova Abbey, a Cistercian monastery and one of the finest and rare examples of early Gothic art in Central Italy dating back to 1135. En route to the Second Council of Lyon in 1274, the Dominican scholastic  Thomas Aquinas died in the abbey on 7 March. Beautiful decorations are the huge rose window on the façade and the carved capitals of the hight nave, not to forget to peaceful cloister nearby. 



TBA pp
  • (based on 6 people occupancy). Lunch not included


Ciociaria Map