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Paestum since 1988 included among the World Heritage Sites protected by UNESCO, is one of the greatest archaeological parks in Europe. Located in the Plains of the Sele River, 40 km far from Salerno, the city has very ancient origins, dating back to the 7th century BC, when some Greek farmers from Sybaris founded the first settlement of Poseidonia. A few centuries later, the Lucanis conquered these lands and gave it the name of Paistos. Later on the area was annexed to the Roman dominion. Between 1000 and 1700, Paestum lived a period of undeserved oblivion, which ended in the 17th century, when it was re-valued following the rediscovery of the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. The architectural attractions that attract tourists to visit the charming Paestum from every corner of the world are very significant: we can mention the famous Doric temples, or rather the Old Basilica and the Temple of Poseidon, both built in honour of Hera, and the Temple of Athena, less imposing but not less striking. Besides, the Comitium, a meeting place in Roman times, the enchanting Amphitheatre, the majestic four Porte cittadine (city gates) and almost 5 km of encircling walls are worth mentioning. The archaeological findings from the whole Southern Italy preserved in the local museum are also of great importance; many of these objects come from Greek and Lucanian necropolis as, for instance, the world famous decorations that adorned the Tomba del Tuffatore (“The Tomb of the Diver”). Finally, Paestum can even meet the needs of the most demanding lover of seaside tourism, to whom a splendid 15 km Tyrrhenian sandy shore is offered, together with an adjacent, exuberant pinewood.

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