From great food to fairy tale lakes, from culture to wine, the Roman Castles – Castelli Romani – have it all: even the Pope (in summer, at least…)!
Castelli Romani: the idyllic side of Rome
Sixteen tiny jewels spread over the hills south of Rome, the Colli Albani, close to the Ciampino airport and on the way to Abruzzo or Campania: they are the Castelli Romani, or, in strict alphabetical order, Albano Laziale, Ariccia, Castel Gandolfo, Colonna, Frascati, Genzano di Roma, Grottaferrata, Lanuvio, Lariano, Marino, Monte Compatri, Monte Porzio Catone, Nemi, Rocca di Papa, Rocca Priora and Velletri.
The Colli Albani area is – geologically speaking – the outcome of hundreds of thousands of years of the evolution of a volcano, the Latium Volcano. The Albano lake, between Marino, Castel Gandolfo and Albano Laziale, and the Nemi lake, between Nemi and Genzano di Roma, are volcanic lakes.
Thus the area is a beautiful crescent shaped succession of gentle hills covered by trees between Rocca Priora and Velletri.
Some of the towns pre – dates even Rome (Albano Laziale, for example) and were important settlements in the Roman age (Lanuvio gave birth to two emperors: Antoninus Pius and Commodus).
Castel Gandolfo: the Pope’s summer residence
With Città del Vaticano the Pope’s Palace in Castel Gandolfo is the only remain of the secular papal dominions. The Pope’s Palace was previously a Roman emperors one, and it definitely worths a visit.
But the Castelli Romani area has a lot to offer even when it comes to earthly pleasures…
Castelli Romani: a feast of food and wine
Since 1996 the Roman Castles are a DOC – Denominazione di origine controllata – area for some great wines from the local Trebbiano grape variety. Ariccia is widely famous for its porchetta, a delicious recipe of roasted pork meat.