Piscina Mirabilis

Useful Information

By car: Tangenziale towards Pozzuoli, exit #14 Pozzuoli-Arco Felice, to Bacoli, at Piazza De Gasperi turn off into via Lucullo and then via del Castello. at the lake turn left to the Sacellum of the Augustales. Very few parking possibilities at the site.
By public transport: Subway to Pozzuoli, station Napoli-Montesanto. 100m to the train station of Ferrovia Cumana, take Napoli-Torregaveta line to Baia stop. Bus to Bacoli.
Open: All year daily 9-one hour befor sunset. Apply to the custodian. [2005]
Fee: Free. [2005]
Classification: ExplainWater Supply
Light: electric.
Dimension: L=70m, W=25.50m, H=15m.
Guided tours: Only on application.
Address: E-mail: contact
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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Piscina Mirabilis (Admirable Basin) has nothing to do with a swimmingpool, although piscina is the modern Italian name for a swimmingpool. It is a huge water reservoir, entirely dug underground into a tufa bank. It was built during the Augustan age, to be the terminal outlet of the Serino aqueduct.

The huge chamber is 70m longa and 25.5m wide, and the 15m high ceiling is supported by 48 pilasters arranged in four rows. With a capacity of about 12,600m² it was a precious water reserve for the Roman fleet at Miseno.

The aqueduct is another monement to the engineering capabilities of the Romans. Despite the technical and organizational problem of excavating such a big chamber, there is the problem of stability. And finally the floor and walls were lined with a thick layer of pounded terracotta. This is an excellent hydraulic cement for lining cisterns and used to the present days.

The water was calcareous, which resulted in a thick crust of limestone or travertine covering the floor and walls.