After the foundation of the Roman colony Aquileia in 181 BC., a great part of Istria came under the Roman authority. The process of Romanization can be noticed especially in the intense settling of the coastal area and also its hinterland. One of such settlement complexes is the roman coastal villa with a port in Simonov zaliv bay.
On the basis of more than a hundred years of archeological research which has increased in time, the archeological site San Simon was proclaimed a cultural monument of national significance in 1999 because of its archeological, historical, artistic, settlement, regional and other unique features.
The archeological sites were found on a four-hectare land where they discovered the remains of the coastal residential roman villa (villae maritimae) with an outbuilding and the largest port of that time. Together they represent one of the greatest estates in this part of Istria. The rooms of the roman villa are paved with priceless black and white mosaics.
The port with two piers that make the quay safe and enabled the landing of the ships when it was very windy is a typical roman port. During the excavations the ruins of an antique aqueduct were discovered. The roman villa complex in Simonov zaliv bay enables a thorough research of the Italic civilization, which once prospered in Istria.
On a peninsula south of the marina of Izola lie the remains of a Roman seaside villa (villa maritima). Similar villas were built around the beginning of the common era every few kilometres along the whole Istrian coast. There residences were not only luxury living buildings, but also important economic focus-points, where fish and shells were breeded and vine and olive trees were cultivated.
The residential part of the villa stretches across a surface of 3.000 m2, the living quarters are arranged around an inner courtyard, while the whole complex is connected by a long walkway (portico) to the harbour.
Visitors can see the walls and the copy of one of the mosaics of the residential area and also the portico connecting the villa to the harbour. The remains of the port, consisting of jetty, enbankment and breakwater, lie now under the sea level.
From september 2009 guided tours for groups through remains of the seaside villa of Simonov zaliv will be organized on request. The archeological park is opened for individual guests during the summertime.
july, august: 5 pm - 7 pm
From september guided tours through remains of the seaside villa of Simonov zaliv will be organized on request.
Tourist information office Izola
Tel. : +386 5 640 10 50
Fax : +386 5 640 10 52
Web site : www.izola.eu
GPS Northing (N) : 45,5334
GPS Easting (E) : 13,6476