|Located on the western
side of the Italian boot, this
is a region of volcanic hills, lakes and fine beaches that are easily
reached from Rome.
Inland from Rome are the hill towns known as the Castelli
Romani, which are popular for excursions. Tivoli,
just 40km (25 miles) east of Rome, was once the haven of the rich,
first in Roman times and later during the Renaissance. It is popular
for its magnificent villas and gardens, such as Villa d’Este
and Villa Adriana. The pleasant town of Frascati,
only 20km (12.5 miles) south of Rome, is famous for its Frascati
wine, a light, delicate, dry white which has an international
reputation. Castelgandolfo overlooks the spectacular
Lake Albano, and is dominated by the Palazzo
Pontificio, the Pope’s summer retreat.
Lido, close to Ostia Antica, the ancient
port of Rome, is a well-organised but not particularly pretty beach
resort. Terracina, further south, is noted for
its soft, white-sand beaches. The old town, up on a hill above the
sea, is home to a Cathedral and the Roman Temple of Jupiter
Anxurus, believed to have been built in the first century
To the south, the most exclusive seaside resort is Sperlonga.
The town itself is reminiscent of a Greek island village, seemingly
endless steps wind up and around through white arches, offering
unexpected but spectacular views of the sea and cliffs. Down below
lies a beautiful small beach, 30km (20 miles) offshore is the unspoilt
island of Ponza. Still further south, the resorts
of San Felice, Circeo and Sabaudia
are known for clean seawater and wide, sandy beaches.
Northwest of Rome, Civitavecchia is an important
naval and merchant port, with regular ferries to Sardinia.