Known for its basilica, Classe is located south of Ravenna, the city of mosaic.
The current settlement of Classe is a little town grown and developed around the Basilica of Sant’Apollinare in Classe, Unesco World Heritage monument of Ravenna (6th century AD), built on the place of martyrdom of Ravenna's first bishop.
It has little in common with the ancient city of Classe (Civitas Classis), located up north, where the Fiumi Uniti river flows.
The name of this little town refers to ‘Castrum Classis’, which was the fixed Roman military camp ordered by the great emperor Augustus to surveil and control the oriental part of the Mediterranean Sea.
The Basilica of Sant'Apollinare in Classe is one of the most important monuments in Emilia-Romagna, acknowledged Unesco World Heritage for its marvelous mosaics of Byzantine Age.
But Classe is also the entrance door to the Pine forest of Classe, one of the most important green lungs of Ravenna, and as such an integral part of the Po Delta Park.
It’s very easy to reach it by bike or running, and from here, in little time you'll have the chance to admire some of the most important naturalistic treasures of Ravenna, such as the Oasis of the Ortazzo and of the Ortazzino, the mouth of the Bevano river, but also the pine forest itself, mentioned by Dante Alighieri in his Divine Comedy (Purgatorio XXVIII, vv. 19-21) and Boccaccio, who set here the novella of Nastagio degli Onesti.
Important treasures from a historical and cultural point of view find in the big Archaeological Park of Classe its most vital focus.
The Archaeological Park of Classe is a complex that comprehends, besides the Basilica of Sant’Apollinare in Classe, Classis Ravenna - Museum of the City and of the Territory and the Ancient Port of Classe.
The museum is a huge exhibition area hosted inside a former local sugar refinery. It traces back the history of the territory through archaeological finds; whereas the Ancient Port is an open-air archaeological site that once was - as the name itself suggests - the harbour area of the ancient town of Classe
Ravenna is closer than you might expect and it’s easy to reach thanks to a cycling path that connects the Basilica of Sant'Apollinare in Classe with the city centre of Ravenna.
The southern beach resorts of Ravenna (Lido di Dante, Lido di Classe and Lido di Savio) are not too far from Classe, and you can reach the amusement park Mirabilandia through a bus service departing from the train station of Classe.