Gateway to the South
The sun-soaked Latium plains, accented with Italian cypress and Roman pine, wait patiently to be admired – a land of ancient lakes and noble castles, charming villas and Etruscan treasures. Lazio is the golden cage that encircles the pulsating heart that is Rome. A Rome that can’t be defined or confined within the context of just a place, but a living, breathing reminder of all that came before.
Lazio is a hearty land made for hearty people. You need only duck into a local osteria and smell the aroma of fried carciofi alla giudia or dig your knife into a sizzling plate of saltimbocca, to realize you’re in the place where Italians first learned to feast. Its people are passionate and honest, always ready to greet you with southern style hospitality or share a life story over a bit of sambucca.
To experience Lazio is to know Rome before it was Rome, and to see the enduring spirit of a civilization that remains alive in the people and traditions of its region. Step outside the Rome you think you know, to discover the Lazio you need to know.
CountryBred Slices on Lazio:
- Lazio is home to over 30 lakes including Lago di Nemi, where Roman Emperor Caligula’s palatial ships dating to the first century AD, were discovered in the 1930’s.
- The Etruscan Necropolis in Tarquinia contains 6,000 Etruscan tombs with around 200 frescoed paintings dating to the 400s BC.
- Bullicame, a natural sulfuric spring found in the area of Viterbo, is referred to as the mouth of hell in Dante’s Inferno. Roman built spas and villas located near the spring date back to the 300s BC. Today many local spas continue to use the natural sulfuric waters of the spring.
- Villa Adriana in Tivoli dates back to the 200s AD. Originally an escape for Emperor Hadrian, the villa combines Roman, Egyptian and Greek architecture to create the atmosphere of an idealized city.
- Rome’s Cinecitta, the epicenter of Italian cinema, has set the stage for such epic films as Ben Hur and The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. More recent films have included Gangs of New York and The Life Acquatic with Steve Zissou.
- Lazio’s typical dishes include saltimboca alla romana (veal cutlets with sage, ham and simmered in butter and white wine), coda alla vaccinara (oxtail ragout), bucatini all’amatriciana (bucatini with guanciale, pecorino and tomato), straccetti con rucola (strips of beef and arugula), spaghetti alla carbonara (spaghetti with bacon, eggs and pecorino) and carciofi alla giudia (artichokes fried in olive oil).
- Lazio’s traditional wines include Cesanese del Piglio, Frascati Superiore and Castelli Romani Rosso.
About the author
Dejou Marano is Co-Founder of CountryBred and Founding Editor of The Bred Blog. Splitting her time between Los Angeles and Europe, Dejou seeks to bring the imagination and wonder of Europe to all travelers through her never-ending pursuit of undiscovered cultural gems and experiences, which she shares through her travel writing.
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