Touring Rome Italy - University La Sapienza

What should we visit in Rome's University La Sapienza district and its environs?...

We hope that you are enjoying our series of articles and guest articles on Italian tourist attractions, covering the entire country except for its major cities. In a sense we have left the best for last. We will describe what to see in Italy’s great cities neighborhood by neighborhood. You may not realize it, but Rome is divided into 20 districts. And each and every one of these districts boasts its own sightseeing attractions. If you have time, visit them all. In any case, read these articles to help plan your trip to The Eternal City. You may be in for some real surprises. Roma, Non Basta una Vita (Rome, a Lifetime is not Enough) .

The University of Rome “La Sapienza”, is centrally located in the eastern Roman district of the same name. In Italian, Sapienza means wisdom or knowledge. This is the largest university in all Europe with over 140 thousand students. The University was founded in 1303 but many of the present buildings were constructed in the early 1930s. Sapienza is ranked among Europe’s top 30 universities. Its most famous professor was Nobel Physics Prize winner Enrico Fermi, sometimes called father of the atomic bomb. As you might well guess, the neighboring San Lorenzo district has quite an animated nightlife.

University La Sapienza Rome

University La Sapienza Rome

Tucked in the northwest corner of this district you’ll find the Castra Pretoria, the barracks housing the Praetorian Guard of Imperial Rome that was built in 23 AD. Three of the four sides were incorporated into the Aurelian Walls and can still be seen today despite their partial destruction by Constatine I who also disbanded the guard. The area is now home to the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale (National Library) of Rome, one giant library. Make sure to see the Arch of Sixtus V, all that is left to commemorate one controversial Pope.

San Lorenzo Fuori le Mura Rome

San Lorenzo Fuori le Mura Rome

The Basilica Papale di San Lorenzo Fuori le Mura (Papal Basilica of Saint Lawrence outside the Walls) is one of seven pilgrim churches in Rome. It is named for the Patron Saint of cooks and chefs martyred in 258. He was said to be burnt on this site. The site contained a small oratory built by Constantine. Then a church was erected towards the end of the Sixth Century. Another church was added in the Thirteenth Century. There’s a lot to see here including an ancient sarcophagus, decorated with scenes from a pagan marriage feast. This church was bombed during World War II but has been restored.

And wherever you go and whatever you do, check out the fine Latium or other Italian wines.

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About the Author

Levi Reiss has authored or co-authored ten books on computers and the Internet, but to be honest, he would rather just drink fine Italian or other wine, accompanied by the right foods. He teaches classes in computers at an Ontario French-language community college. Visit his website devoted to Italian travel with an accent on fine Italian wine and food. Visit his central wine website with weekly reviews of $10 wine and columns devoted to various aspects of wine including wine and food, humor, trivia, organic and kosher wine and lots more.

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