Ancona: capital and port
The name Ancona derives from the Greek language and means elbow. This is likely caused by the fact that the stretch of coast, where the city has extended since its foundation in ancient times, forms a distinctive curve out to the sea.
Today Ancona is the capital of the province of the same name and of the whole region Marche. With about 103,000 inhabitants it is the biggest center within the environs, too. Ancona still ranks among Italy’s largest ferry ports with daily sea communications to Greece, Croatia and Turkey. Also cargo boats and cruise liners regularly stop over here.
Because of it location and its natural harbor the town has always been vitally important for fishing, navy and trade. The brisk exchange with the east has left many tracks, which partly are still visible today. Apart from Bari and Venice Ancona was one of the most important ports of the Adriatic Sea, but this brought not only advantages. In times of war the city was frequently attacked. Therefore and due to an earthquake in the seventies parts of the old town are ruined – and many haven’t been rebuilt to date.
But if you make time and look closer, you can find rustic corners, historic places and relics of far-off time even in modern Ancona. The lovely shops and good restaurants are worth going to in any case, as well as the harbor and the district all around or the urban hill Colle Guasco. There you will see not only the wonderful cathedral San Ciriaco, but enjoy also an extraordinary view to the bay.
Ancona is flanked by the hills Colle Guasco and Monte Astagno with the citadel of town. Behind that there rears up Monte Conero with its unique nature park that ranks among the most popular destination in the environs. So it is the right place for those, who would like to get to know not only the urban part of Ancona, but also local nature, the typical vegetation and the marvelous beaches.