“Inextricably linked to the city of Rome and
the history of the Papal States”
Lazio is named after latinolatus, which means spacious. In his area of 18 thousand square kilometers find space mountainous areas, hilly (extended for more than 50% of its territory) and plains, especially near the coast. Lazio is a region that retains the ancient testimonies of the various Indo-European peoples who settled there since the second millennium BC. Not only Latinos, but also the Sabines, Volscians, Ernici, the Equi and Auruncis populated central and southern areas of this fertile region, while in North asserted themselves, at least since the fifth century BC, the Etruscans. Lazio is not, however, a region important only for its history, which is identified almost entirely with the struggle for dominance of Rome against Lazio and other populations, following the fall of the Roman Empire, with the vicissitudes of the State Papal States, until the capture of the city in 1870 by the army from Savoia, but also by its nature so rich and lush and for its large agricultural estates dedicated to the cultivation of olives and grapes (especially in the city of Viterbo area and in the area of Monti Cimini). But the focus remains Rome, with its splendid palaces, museums, the Vatican and the large amount of archaeological sites in it preserved, among which is the symbol of the city: the Colosseum.
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Rome. Extraordinary magnet for the entire region, the Eternal City has always led the development of the entire Lazio. The immense artistic hosted Urbe attracts tourists from all over the world: the old town, the extraterritorial properties of the Holy headquaters and the Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls, are among the objects protected by UNESCO. Rome was the first great metropolis of humanity (exceeded 3 thousand years of life), as well as the beating heart of the most important ancient civilizations. And even today, its streets are lined with people coming from everywhere: African Religious, American tourists, pilgrims from South America and Eastern students. All drawn from the Roma caput mundi, which marked an indelible mark in the arts, in literature, law, philosophy and religion. Its historic center, bordered by the Aurelian Wall, is still the place where the Roman crowd, mixed with visitors: summa noisy and cheerful of the historical, artistic and cultural heritage of the West, of a certain lifestyle, fashion and good food. Rome, then, is the center of Italian politics, culture and the Catholic religion and it is the only town in the world to accommodate internally a foreign state (the enclave of Vatican City), which makes it all effects at the same time the capital of two states.
Lazio boasts a diverse landscape heritage and suitable for all seasons. From winter sports and hiking (which lends the entire mountain complex of Terminillo), to picnics spring on the gentle hills that are home to the so-called Castelli Romani, as Frascati and Ariccia, up to the lake resorts of Bracciano, Vico and Bolsena . Do not miss the spas as Fiuggi, Tivoli and Viterbo and the seaside resort, especially popular in the summer, as Formia, Gaeta, Ostia and Neptune. Many parks, reserves and conservation areas scattered throughout the region. Most important? The National Park of Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise, the Circeo National Park, the National Park of Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga and the Regional Natural Reserve Tor Caldara. Besides these, many protected areas have been established in the region, especially in recent years. today protected areas cover an area of approximately 10% of the region.
The largest events held each year in Lazio are due, for the most part, religious festivities. Connected, for example, the religious festival of Corpus Christi, is the traditional floral display, which takes place in June in Genzano di Roma. Along the route of the religious procession begins with a floral carpet, as in baroque festivals organized in the capital in the first half of the seventeenth century by the great architect Gian Lorenzo Bernini. Another party with deep religious connotations is the feast of Santa Rosa, co-patron of Viterbo, which takes place on September 4th. The event itself, however, is held the day before, with the transport of the monumental machine of Santa Rosa, imposing building votive carried by porters Santa Rosa. Autumn starring the recent International Film Festival in Rome, leading to the capital filmmakers and artists of world renown. As for the music, you can not not mention the Tuscia in Jazz Festival, one of the most important Italian event dedicated to this kind of music, in July and August in Soriano nel Cimino. Of great importance to the world of sport is, finally, the International Athletics Meeting, held in September in Rieti. 9 September 2007 Asafa Powell settled, just during the course of this meeting, the world record in the 100 meters.
By Plane. The main airport of the region is the Leonardo da Vinci, which is located in Fiumicino, 36 km from Rome. Part from the Leonardo Express train which brings in about 30 minutes directly to Rome’s Termini Station, from where the connections to all the other capitals of the region. There is also a shuttle service to Termini Station. The second airport of Lazio is Ciampino, 16 km from the capital. Even Ciampino airport is connected to Rome by rail service and shuttle buses, which will take the Anagnina station on line A of the metropolitan transport Roman.
By Train. The main station of Lazio is to Rome Termini, but the railway infrastructure of Lazio stretches for 1,200 km, with over 170 stations. Trenitalia connects all major provincial capitals Italians to Rome and other cities of Latium. High Speed lines serve the Rome-Florence (the first to be opened in Europe), Roma-Napoli and Genoa-Capalbio-Roma (particularly scenic since fully developed along the Tyrrhenian).
By Car-. The A1 motorway connects the Lazio with Florence, Bologna and Milan, Naples and Reggio Calabria. Finally you can reach the Lazio also from the Tyrrhenian coast with the A12, or from the Eagle with the A24.
Medieval villages, natural parks, spas and pristine beaches. Lazio is not there some danger of getting bored. Who loves archeology, can indulge themselves to visit the many archaeological sites scattered around the region, such as the Roman excavations of Ostia Antica, the Temple of Hercules at Cori, the temple of Jupiter Anxur in Terracina or the Etruscan excavations of Vulci, the Necropolis Tuscania and that of Cerveteri. Renowned spas are, instead, Viterbo and Tivoli, also famous for the presence of Villa d’Este and Hadrian’s Villa, where he lived the eponymous emperor. At Viterbo, we must instead report the medieval quarter of San Pellegrino and the Papal Palace. And speaking of the Popes, one must not forget Anagni, the city that was the birthplace of several popes, with its magnificent cathedral, the palace of Boniface VIII, the Palace of the Region and Barkenov House, where he lived Dante Alighieri during his stay in the city. Delicious also the villages scattered throughout the region, such as those of Civita di Bagnoregio, Calcata, Castel Gandolfo (still summer residence of the Pope), Sermoneta and Greccio. On the coast, do not forget to drop in Gaeta, popular seaside resort in the Middle Tyrrhenian. According to legend, the port city, located on the spur of Monte Orlando Aurunco, must originally its name to the nurse hero Virgil Aeneas, Caieta, who died in these places. Sperlonga, not far from Gaeta, it is recognized at a glance for the white houses in limestone perched on a rock jutting into the sea. Not to be missed, even Terracina, at the southern end of the Pontine plain (on the beaches of the “city of the myth” landed the hero of the Odyssey Odysseus, but also enchanted Goethe and Curzio Malaparte), Ponza and San Felice Circeo.
TRADITIONS AND FOLKLORE
In an area so rich in history and culture can not miss an equally rich folk heritage, easier to intercept in outlying areas, especially internal ones, such as the Ciociaria and Sabina. Between the parties related to the country life, play a particularly important those related to local production: the wine fairs, which take place in Marino and Montefiascone (August), the Strawberry Festival Nemi (June), that of sezze artichokese (April) or that of hazelnuts in the Monti Cimini (setttembre) and chestnuts in Norma (October). Persistent also events related to religious worship, as the re-enactment of the Franciscan crib in Greccio (December) or the representation of the climb to Calvary which takes place in Bagnoregio during Easter. Of historical origin, however, the Festa di Mezzo May Acquapendente, which was established in memory of the liberation from the Barbarossa. In Rieti and Ronciglione are particularly followed the festivities related to the carnival, while at Acquafondata, in January, there is the Festival of bagpipes.
AT THE TABLE
The cuisine of Lazio, however rich in combinations and in substance, is a cuisine traditionally “poor” and popular. Take, for example, the appetizers. The prelude to a good lunch provides strong flavors and genuine products, as the couples (strips of horse meat soaked in pepper and put to mature), or mortadella, made with lean horse amateur. The town of Rieti seasonal cooking is also famous for having given birth to bucatini Amatriciana, dish made of lard, bacon, tomato, pepper and pecorino. The cheeses are almost all made from sheep’s milk or goat’s milk, as the Roman caciotta (pale yellow, round shape and delicate flavor) and pecorino romanoDop, which is prepared with whole milk of sheep that lives in the the wild and is subjected to aging at least five months. But it is in the first dishes to be found the true essence of Roman cuisine. We already mentioned bucatini Amatriciana there are those cheese and pepper, which belong to the tradition of the Roman suburbs, as well as gnocchi alla romana and pajata, rigatoni dish seasoned with sauce made of guts Suckling veal cooked with oil , garlic, parsley, white wine, tomato and pepper. Worthy of note are the spaghetti carbonara, with bacon, cheese and eggs. As regards the latter, typical of the Lazio cuisine are abbacchio, lamb served in the form of stew and baked with garlic, rosemary, white wine, anchovies and chilli; and coda alla vaccinara, stewed in a rich sauce of odors and bitter chocolate. But the queen of the Castelli Romani is the famous porchetta-roast pig. As an accompaniment to meat, then, are often proposed the artichokes, dish of Rome’s Jewish community, or matticella artichokes, especially in the area of Velletri. Wide choice of wines to match each course. Great whites as Frascati, Velletri, the Colli Albani and especially the East! Est! Est! Montefiascone, particularly suitable to accompany the specialties of the lake as eel and whitefish. The bakery offers Lazio finally specialties such as maritozzo, soft bun dough in which there are pine nuts, raisins and candied orange peel; bocconotti, small patties of pastry stuffed with ricotta; and finally pangiallo, a sweet made of nuts, almonds, hazelnuts, pine nuts and honey.
Two kinds of crafts that have developed, over the centuries, in the Lazio region. Next to crafts linked to the Church and the nobility, engaged in the construction of immense works of art, has in fact developed over time a craft province which aims to meet the needs of the poorer classes. The goldsmith’s art of the region, in particular, is characterized by this duplicity (Ciociaria is the area that has the most flourishing craft). Typical of the entire Lazio is the metalworking and the production of pans, ladles and objects embossed copper, especially in Poggio Bustone, Frosinone and Sora, or wrought iron in Tivoli, Latina, Veroli and Tarquinia. Terracotta Tools, inspired by the Etruscan tradition, are produced mainly in Ciociaria and northern Lazio, while the ceramic Viterbo boasts a secular tradition.
DID YOU KNOW THAT..
Bomarzo, in the province of Viterbo, is the “Monster Park”? Also called “Sacred Grove”, was released in 1552 from an idea of the architect Pirro Ligorio, the same who designed Villa d’Este in Tivoli, and completed the work in San Pietro. Commissioned by Prince Pier Francesco Orsini, the park was created with the specific intent to be a unique work in the world and to impress its visitors. Among architectures impossible, as the House Incline, and enigmatic statues representing perhaps the stages of a journey of alchemical array, the visitor is lost in a fantasy world and into a labyrinth of symbols, including giant statues and monstrous creatures.