Baia, also known as Baiae, is an impressive archaeological complex in Campania in Italy housing the remains of a series of summer homes of the leaders of Ancient Rome.
Development began in Baia in the second century BC, during the republican era and continued into the imperial age, when the Emperor Augustus connected all the lavish villas in the area with a road. It was also under Augustus that Baia was furnished with its grand thermal baths.
Augustus’s successors, notably Nero, Hadrian, and Alexander Severus continued to expand and develop Baia, transforming it into a expansive mass of villas and leisure facilities. By now it was a true retreat for Rome’s elite.
Several pretty ruins remain at Baia, lying sprawled over the hills and near the coast. However, much of this almost-city, known by many as “little Rome” has since been swept into the sea.