Castel Madama
Italiano

rural tourism in

Castel Madama province of Rome INFO: Where to go

EXCURSIONS

Useful Information

It's possible to make a one-day tour by car from Country House "Villa Pietro Romano":
- approx. 2 hours to Abbruzzo National park;
- approx. 2 hours to Pompei excavation site;
- approx. 2 hours to Assisi Umbria or Orvietto;
- really close to Rome (30km from the center of Rome);
- approx. 10 minutes to Tivoli (Villa d'Este, Villa Adriana, Villa Gregoriana)
- approx. 40 minutes to Subiaco (Monasteri di San Benedetto)
- approx. 20 minutes to Guadagnolo (Sanctuary of the Mentorella)
- approx. 20 minutes to Licenza (The Villa of Horace and Horace museum)
- two great shopping centers: Roma Est (20 min), Valmontone Fashion District (40 min)


Art Cities Tivoli

Hadrian’s Villa - Tivoli

Hadrian’s Villa near Tivoli (Rome) was built by Emperor Hadrian, starting from 117 A.D., as an imperial palace far away from the city of Rome. It is the most extensive ancient roman villa, covering an area of at least 80 hectares, more or less as Pompeii. In 1999 Villa Hadriana was appointed one of the Human Heritage Monuments by Unesco; as many other archaeological sites it is very famous, but still very little known in its essence, notwithstanding more than 500 years of excavations. A more scientific and modern approach to its study is a recent novelty. Villa Hadriana lived until late antiquity, was sacked by the Barbarians of Totila, and during the Middle Ages became a quarry of building materials for the city of Tivoli and its bishop; her identity was lost, being renamed Tivoli Vecchio (Old Tivoli).

Villa d’Este - Tivoli

Villa d’Este, masterpiece of the Italian Garden, is included in the UNESCO world heritage list. With its impressive concentration of fountains, nymphs, grottoes, plays of water, and music, it constitutes a much-copied model for European gardens in the mannerist and baroque styles. The garden is generally considered within the larger –and altogether extraordinary-- context of Tivoli itself: its landscape, art and history which includes the important ruins of ancient villas such as the Villa Adriana, as well as a zone rich in caves and waterfalls displaying the unending battle between water and stone. The imposing constructions and the series of terraces above terraces bring to mind the hanging gardens of Babylon, one of the wonders of the ancient world. The addition of water-- including an aqueduct tunneling beneath the city -- evokes the engineering skill of the Romans themselves.

Villa Gregoriana - Tivoli

“Villa Gregoriana” Park, at the slopes of the acropolis, dominated by the two temples from II and III century b.C., was organized in 1834 under Pope Gregory XVI, after the diverting of the Aniene river that brought to the present order of the “great fall”. The presence of archaeological ruins, vestiges of different periods, exceptional natural elements, caves and foreshortened views give to the park a great environmental, historical and artistic valour.


The Sanctuary of the Mentorella - Guadagnolo

The Shrine of Our Lady of Mentorella is one of the monasteries founded by St.Benedict, is located in Prenestini Mountains, about 1050 meters above sea level, 40km east of Rome, just below the large rocky mountain called Monte Guadagnolo (the highest peak of the Prenestini Mountains) The Sanctuary of the Mentorella is the first one in Italy dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The Sanctuary of the Mentorella was founded thanks to Constantine, the first Christian emperor, 1800 years ago.


Subiaco

Subiaco is known for its religious and artistic interests, specially for its sacred grotto (Sacro Speco), In the St. Benedict’s Abbey, and the other Abbey of St. Scholastica. It is also famous as the first city in Italy where books were printed, in the 15th century.



The Sacro Speco or Monastery of San Benedetto - Subiaco

As we go up the road to Jenne we reach this impressive complex of buildings which almost looks as if it is one with the surrounding rock, as it includes two caves: the upper cave where the saint retired in prayer for three years, and the lower one where he used to receive shepherds, connected to each other by the Scala Santa or Holy Staircase. Apart from the very faded frescoes in the Grotta dei Pastori (IX C.), in which the olderst image of the Madonna in the whole area is kept (VII C.), the monastery can be dated around the XIII Century.

The Monastery of St. Scholastica - Subiaco

The Monastery of St. Scholastica rises up just a short distance from Sacro Speco, at the foot of Mount Taleo where two valleys meet and above the place where was the highest of Nero’s lakes. It is considered to be the most ancient Benedictine monastery in the world and it is the only monastery of the twelve ones wanted by St. Benedict along the valley Aniene not to have been destroyed by earthquakes (1216, 1227, 1299), or the Saracen invasions in the 9th century.

Nero’s Villa - Subiaco

About a mile from the town on a hill above the river we may still trace the ruins of Nero’s Villa; The archaeological remains, which are not even extensive, are located on the street that goes to the Monasteries. Many centuries ago this villa was one of the most beautiful and attractive places of the ancient Roman world. The emperor Nero dammed the rive in three places, creating three artificial lakes, the Simbruina stops flowing, connected by high waterfalls, obstructing the course of the Aniene river. It was on these three lakes that he built the magnificent villa , and other complexes connected by walkways and bridges. From here the name “Sublaquem”, which means “under the lake”, given first to the villa and then passed to the nearby town: from this was derived the name Subiaco.


Orazio Villa - Licenza

You reach Villa Orazio by means of Via Licentina either by car or on foot; before arriving in the town of Licenza a well-indicated street breaks off tot he left and leads to the parking area for the excavations; in correspondence with the intersection there is a lovely pedestrian path that goes gently uphill in the woods until reaching the entrance to the excavations. The remains of Orazio Villa are very interesting: the site was object of various successions of countryside excavations in the which the American Academy collaborated as Superintendent; in the course of the excavations the happenings of this ancient construction were clarified.

Oraziano Musuem in the Orsini Castel of Licenza - Licenza

At the summit of the town, going up along the small but well-cared for historic center, you reach Piazza di Palazzo, with a beautiful scenic view towards the valley and Orazio Valley, where you find Palazzo Orsini, a lovely but not very big building, whose origins date back to the 11th century. In fact, in 1011, Farfa Abbey came under the possession of the feud through the donation on behalf of the Crescenzi family, who controlled a very vast area, from Palombara to Licenza Vally, and the abbot made it fortified, as was happening in many towns in central Italy in those centuries.

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