Tourist Attractions in Malta
The Roman Villa in Rabat Malta
One of the top tourist attractions in Malta from the Roman era, is the Roman Villa located in Rabat Malta.
The remains of this Roman villa (or Roman Domus) were discovered in 1881.
It is evident from the things found in the villa that the Romans enjoyed a good life while ruling over the Maltese Islands.
Top Tourist Attractions in Malta: The Roman Domus and Museum
The villa has a Doric peristyle around a central court.
The court is paved with exquisite Roman mosaics. In Roman times, the villa was decorated with marble statues.
Today, you can see some of these statues in the museum.
The mosaics which you will see at this Roman villa are believed to be the oldest mosaic compositions from the western Mediterranean, together with those found in Pompeii and Sicily.
These beautiful Roman mosaics are indeed the “stars” of the site. At the centre of the court, you will see an emblema depicting two birds perched on the rim of a bowl.
Originating from a painting by Sosos, this image was copied and widespread throughout the Roman Empire. The two birds on the rim of the bowl are known as the Drinking Doves of Sosos.
Sadly, we cannot really enjoy this charming Roman villa in its full glory, since the villa was reduced to merely ruins by Arab overlords when they ruled Malta.
In fact, at the back of the Roman Villa Museum you can still see some Muslim graves because during the Arabs Period in Malta, the site was used a Muslim burial ground.
In 1924, a museum was built around the remains of the villa.
Some of the things which you will see in the museum are tombstones, marble statues, terra-cotta ornaments, glassware, peristyle mosaic, theatrical masks, a tiny bone baby rattle, bone hairpins, a rython (drinking vessel) and decorative architecture.
The remains of the Roman Villa now occupy the lower floor of the present building.
Malta Tourist Attractions: The Roman Villa and Museum
Location: Il-Wesgha tal-Muzew, Mdina, Malta
Telephone: 2145 4125
Opening Hours: Daily 9.00am to 5.00pm. The villa and museum are closed on the 24th, 25th and 31st of December, 1st of January and on Good Friday.
Entrance Fee:Euro 6.00 (Discounts apply for kids, students and senior citizens).
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