This was Chirsa to the Etruscans and Caere to the Romans- It stands Etruscans and Caere to the Romans- It stands on a tuff plateau crowned by clumps of trees.
The Etruscan Necropolis is in a charming setting of wild olive, juniper and oleander, waving in the brezes off nearby sea- On those beaches the Etruscans landed, here they buried their dead in rich dwellings for eternity, surrounded by the beauty that might promise them a certain ease in the other world, being convinced that the spirits of the dead continued to live in their tombs.
They were not aware, as they carried out these innumerable acts of family piety, that they were building an impressive monument to their civilisation for posterity.
Here, and tomorrow at Tarquinia, we can feel the fascination of these coastal Necropoli. Tre grasscovered, dome-shaped tumuli have small rectangular doors opening on to the road. A guide must be found in the town in order to visit the Tombs; that of the Alcove, with the stone couch of the deceased, the Tomb of Tarchnas , or of the Tarquins, the largest, that of the Reliefs, with magnificent poly. chrome stucco-work, of the Triclinium, the Pilasters, of the Painted Animals- Fifteen kilometres (9 1/2 mi.) farther on we come to Santa Severa, the Etruscan Pyrgi, with its majestic castle; then Santa Marinella on the coast; another 10 kms. (6 1/4 mi.) bring us to CIVITAVECCHIA, where we need see only the port, the medieval castle and the fine Fort, planned by Michelangelo. Leaving early in the morning, we arrive after 22 km. (14 1/2 mi.) at TARQUINIA.