Amphithéâtre Gallo-Romain

Opening hours

Open

  • Monday 10:00 am - 07:00 pm
  • Tuesday 10:00 am - 07:00 pm
  • Wednesday 10:00 am - 07:00 pm
  • Thursday 10:00 am - 07:00 pm
  • Friday 10:00 am - 07:00 pm
  • Saturday 10:00 am - 07:00 pm
  • Sunday 10:00 am - 07:00 pm

Closes at 07:00 pm

Opening hours subject to change depending on the health context

Useful information

Location : In town

Province : Saintes and Vals de Saintonge

  • English
    • History


      The Santones tribe lived in the Saintonge region at the time of the Gauls. During the reign of the Emperor Augustus, Saintes (Mediolanum Santonum) became the capital of the Roman province of Aquitania, which stretched (from the Loire to the Pyrenees).

      Mediolanum was one of the first towns to have an amphitheatre, which was constructed during the reign of the Emperor Claudius in 40 to 50 A.D.

      Like many amphitheatres in the Roman Empire, that of Saintes was built on the outskirts of the town on a site that is today called the "Vallon des Arènes" (Small valley of the amphitheatre). lts builders took advantage of the local topography to construct part of the amphitheatre along the slopes of the valley, meaning that they managed to reduce the amount of construction work needed.

      The amphitheatre’s function was to seat the large number of spectators who came to watch such violent and bloodthirsty events as gladiatorial combats and wild animal hunts. Within this large elliptical structure, which is 126 metres long and 102 metres wide, several thousand people – a large part of the local population – couId be seated.

      Today, in spite of the disappearance of its superstructures, the remains give an extremely good idea of what this amphitheatre looked like at its peak. The site is now open for visitors to discover throughout the year.

  • Français

Ride around

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Circuit de Chantemerle sur la Soie

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Circuit 8 St-Loup Les Petites Rivières

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Amphithéâtre Gallo-Romain

Address

20 rue Lacurie
17100 Saintes

GPS coordinates

45° 44'44.52"N, 0° 38'38.1"W

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