Monte Porzio Catone and Frascati
Monteporzio, seen from the valley beneath
Monteporzio, seen from the mountain behind
Since the ancient Roman times, the Alban Hills have been a primary resort for Romans. The Eternal City in fact is only 25 Km (appr. 15 miles) distant. During the Middle Ages eleven villages on the summits
of this volcanic range became the fortified strongholds of patrician
families fleeing the anarchy of Rome, hence the name Castelli
Romani (Roman Castles, or Alban Hills in English).
It is a scenic area of great natural beauty, with olive groves
and vineyards, woods and pastures, blessed with a temperate
climate, a bright golden light, and a balsamic air.
Monte Porzio Catone is named after Marcus Porcius Cato, the
Censor, who was said to have lived in the area. Perched
on a hill overlooking Rome, Monte Porzio is the place to go
for fresh pasta, quick groceries, a cappuccino at the
bar or an excellent meal in a restaurant. One should visit
Tusculum, a buried Roman town with its theater still intact, and also
enjoy the wine tasting at the fall harvest festival, or bring
children to meet the local "bambini" at the community
Nearby there is Frascati, the largest town in the Alban Hills
boasting a magnificent 17th century Cathedral and several
notable Renaissance princely villas. Once painted by John
Singer Sargent, Villa Torlonia is now the town park. Another,
the Villa Aldobrandini, is still owned by a descendant of
the original family that gave a Pope to the Church in the
16th century. On Sunday the whole town is out
for a stroll along the promenade to savour a gelato at "Tris"
in the church square or to watch a puppet show featuring Pulchinella
Our Monte Porzio villa is only 20 Km. distant (appr. 14 miles) from Rome. It can be reached by bus from the village of Monte Porzio, by train from Frascati (only 3 Km appr. 1.8 miles distant). Moreover, if you have a car, the nearest Rome subway stop with car park is only 15 Km. distant, appr. 9 miles.
Rome's Ciampino airport, where most charter flights from Europe land, is only 15 Km. distant (appr. 9 miles).
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