Rome Travel Guide

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Monday, November 9, 2009

Rome the Second Time Top 40. #40: The Cloaxa Maxima

Beginning with today's post, and over the next few months, we'll be rolling out a list and offering a challenge: Rome-the-Second-Time's Top 40: the 40 sites you shouldn't miss (da non perdere) once you've seen the "big" tourist attractions, or if you want to experience the Eternal City in a different, more alternative, perhaps less Eternal, way. We'll call it the RST Top 40.

Many of our Top 40 are on one of the itineraries in Rome the Second Time or in the entertainment chapter, and we expect the ambitious (or crazed) to acquire the book, if only to make the quest easier. But the list will include new discoveries and new adventures, including a few that emerged from our 2009 sojourn in Monteverde Nuovo. For the new ones, we'll provide fuller descriptions and and directions. From time to time, we'll also present our "regular" posts.

Comments on the list, and suggestions for items you'd like included in the next go-around (or even this one, if you make a compelling case - just think of the arguments/discussions ["discussioni, argomenti"] we had getting to one list of 40 between us) are welcome.

As with any "Top 40" we're starting with #40 and will work our way up to #1.

RST Top 40. #40: The Cloaxa Maxima

OK, so it's just a big drain opening on the Tevere (Tiber River), and a messy one at that. But it's ancient (as in ancient Rome), and there's a good story behind it, which you'll find in Rome the Second Time. We've heard that it's possible to get a tour of the drain, but we haven't done that, not being fans of slime, rats, slugs, leeches and other things that thrive in slow-moving water in the dark. The 19th-century Jeanne Gauchard print, above, shows the Cloaxa Maxima in the context of its immediate environment, and before the Tevere's huge walls went up. It hangs, framed in gold, in our living room in the States, a gift from Dianne to Bill.

Bill and Dianne


Jessica said...

It used to be possible several years ago to get in (even though even at that point you technically weren't allowed). It's virtually impossible now, as there is sewage down there and it's a health hazard to go in. This was always the case, they just weren't regulating it closely in years past. In order to go down in there you need to be suited up head to toe to make sure you have no exposed flesh what so ever.

Anonymous said...

Nice article... but wasn't it called Cloaca Maxima?