Piscina Mirabilis Miseno (Bacoli)

The Piscina Mirabilis is a water cellar from ancient Roman times in what used to be the town of Miseno, and is now a suburb of Bacoli. When the 14th century poet Petrarch called the cistern “miraculously beautiful”, he inadvertently gave it the name it is now known by.

Piscina Mirabilis Miseno (Bacoli)

Useful information

Address: Via Campi Elisi, 1 – Bacoli. Phone: +39 081 0140916. Opening times: Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at 11:00, 11:30, 13:00, 15:30 and 16:00. You are only allowed inside for 30 minutes. Ticket price: 5 Euros (reduced price: 3 Euros). (Note that opening times and admission may be subject to change.)

Piscina Mirabilis in Miseno (Bacoli)
Piscina Mirabilis

History and description

The so-called Piscina Mirabilis was constructed in the 1st century AD, when Augustus was Emperor. It was an enormous water reservoir, used to provide drinking water for the Roman fleet when they came to land in the port of Misenum.

The cistern was the end point of the Aqueduct of August (Aqua Augusta), which had its source in Serino and also provided drinking water for Naples.

Some numbers

The reservoir was dug into the tuff stone cliff, 8 meters above sea level. It is rectangular in shape, measures 70 by 25 meters, and has a height of 15 meters. Its capacity is 12,000 m3. The ceiling is supported by 4 rows of 12 pillars.

Piscina Mirabilis in Miseno (Bacoli)

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