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SiMuVe – The Ventimiglia Museum System

History passes by Ventimiglia and thanks to the “SiMuVe – Sistema Musei Ventimiglia” we can discover the presence in passage of the Palaeolithic man, the ancient Romans, and the British of the Victorian Age.

The Balzi Rossi Prehistoric Museum, a few hundred meters from the French border, was founded by Sir Thomas Hanbury in 1898, following discoveries of artefacts belonging to the Palaeolithic man who lived in the area between 230,000 and 10,000 years ago. But the Balzi Rossi Museum is not the only tribute to this land by the British Baronet. His botanical gardens, founded in 1867, are one of the most important historic “English” gardens with countless plant species that have their ideal habitat in Capo Mortola, the perfume garden and the Australian forest, mimosas, citrus fruits, and roses.

Moving towards east, we reach Forte dell’Annunziata built by the Sabaudo Government between 1831 and 1837 to strengthen the western boundaries. Visitors can enjoy a breath-taking view onto the sea and it now houses the “Girolamo Rossi” Archaeological Museum (MAR), as well as being the venue of many events.

The MAR preserves the finds of the Roman city of Albintimilium and of some collections dating back to the late Nineteenth century.

A few steps from the Fort, is the old town of Ventimiglia Alta, one of the largest in Liguria and that preserves, within the medieval walls, with Sixteenth-century reconstructions, important public, religious and private monuments testifying the life of the city from the early Middle Ages until the Nineteenth century.

The remains of the ancient city of Albintimilium can be visited on the city’s eastern outskirts. Founded by the Romans during the Second century BC, the archaeological area preserves traces of ancient walls, urban gates, streets and some public monuments like the theatre and thermae and private ones like stately homes and residential areas).

[Samirah Muran]

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