The Appian Way in Rome commonly refers to a road first built in 312BC by Appius Claudius Caecus, a Roman censor noted for his enthusiasm for constructing public works including the first aqueduct. At first measuring 56Km in length the road was later extended all the way to the city of Brindisi, a distance of some 560Km.
Today the road offers some very interesting attractions for the visitor. It was usual for the people of Rome to build their burial tombs on roads leading out of the city, and many remnants of them can be seen along the length of the Appian Way, though they are now little more than ruins. The most intact is the tomb of Cecilia Metella who was the wife of a Roman general, but many others exists such as the tomb of Seneca and the family tomb of Sextus Pompus Justus. Seneca of course was a notable Roman philosopher and was a tutor and advisor to Emperor Nero.
There are many other historical monuments along the length of the road. You might for example start your journey at the San Sebastian Gate where you can explore the Museum of Walls before setting off towards Church of Santa Maria in Palmis.
Not far along you will pass the Catacombs of St. Callixtus, a major burial site said to be the final resting places of the early popes and of many saints. The catacombs are a labyrinth of tunnels and galleries extending over many acres.
Shortly afterwards you arrive at the Catacombs of St. Sebastian, a massive burial site for 4th century Christians. If you take the underground tour here be prepared for a dark and somewhat claustrophobic adventure!
Many other monuments will take your interest as you travel on to the final point, the Circus of Maxentius, a well preserved imperial circus used for the then popular sport of chariot racing.
If this seems like a walk too far for you, it is easy to hire a bicycle nearby and do the whole trip in the saddle, but be prepared for some rough cobbled surfaces! The ancient Via Appian is remarkably well preserved but was never designed for two-wheel transport.