Five kilometres in length, more than a hundred hectares in area, about two hundred finely painted and decorated tombs, dating from a period between the sixth and first centuries BC. A purely numerical description would suffice to convince the traveller to visit the necropolis of the Monterozzi, but what amazes, in addition to the size of the archaeological area, are the quality and importance of what has been found.
Descending a few metres below ground, a sensational series of wall paintings is revealed on the walls of the Etruscan tombs, fundamental for historians and archaeologists to better understand the identity and values of the Etruscan civilisation.
Human figures, smiling, full of emotions, share the walls of the necropolis of the Monterozzi with animals, objects, colourful decorations and lively representations of daily life in Tarquinia. The cities of the dead in Etruscan culture were in fact supposed to be a visual compendium of the cities of the living: the tomb of the Leopards shows scenes of banqueting and dancing; on the walls of the tomb of the Hunt and Fish appear characters of impressive realism, but they are actually dozens of tombs worthy of a mention.
Faced with so much beauty, it is not surprising to know that UNESCO included the necropolises of Tarquinia and nearby Cerveteri in the list of World Heritage Sites in 2004