Italy is full of beautiful places inside out. And you’ll hardly get enough of Rome after your first day or even a week of stay. But in case you have visited Rome more than a couple of times and wish to get a bigger picture about diverse Italian landscapes, culture, and food — well, why not go further and see some places outside the capital city for a day or two? As we know, Italian trains are fast and will take you wherever you want in no time.
So, what can you actually see outside Rome?
Italy is a country with countless places to visit, amazing towns and cities full of history. Some of them can be described as absolutely legendary without any exaggeration. Take, for example, Florence. Just a bit more than an hour and you are in a city, where every stone breathes with history and art. Florence is the cradle of the Renaissance and is the motherland of the greatest artists of all times: Brunelleschi, Rafael, Leonardo Da Vinci, Dante Alighieri, Michelangelo, Botticelli and countless others. It’s a trophy city for any tourist without any exception.
A city of absolutely different nature is Naples. Naples is amazing for having specific Italian color that you’ve seen in the old movies. People visit it to taste the most Italian pizza and enjoy panoramas with the notorious Vesuvius. Smells of Italian cuisine, old shabby but such beautiful cobbled streets make it a very unique place with truly Italian atmosphere. If you want to see a city from the famous movies and enjoy authentic Italian ambience different from any other city you should explore Napoli and see it with your own eyes.
The history of papacy in Italy is by all means a topic worth studying. Once there were many papal residences all around Italy. And although today most of them are concentrated within Rome area, many tourists enjoy visiting old cities and learn intriguing facts about papal past. Such places are always rich in history, have medieval castles surrounded by lush greenery and picturesque cobbled city center lined with ancient houses. Viterbo and Orvieto would be definitely among the perfect examples for the topic in question.
Both of them are situated within 100 km from Rome (Orvieto is a bit further - 120 km), possess an immense historical meaning and the biggest amount of perfectly preserved old buildings. Viterbo is known as the second Papal home and shelter in times of danger. Orvieto was the refuge for a number of popes in the Medieval times. Both cities are amazingly cosy and beautiful and could become a great place to see outside Rome. Don’t miss out on the spectacular medieval quarters, which are so rare to see in Rome.
Yep, it’s not only in Rome where you can see fantastic ancient buildings of great historical value. Worldwide known Pompeii is on one’s mind after all the movies we’ve seen and history lessons we’ve attended. And although it’s an unforgettable place to visit, there are less famous sites, which can blow your mind just as much. What about Herculaneum, for instance? It’s situated 25 km from Pompeii and has a similar history (notorious Vesuvius swiped the city in a glimpse together with 3 other cities). So, Herculaneum is one of the best preserved out the four, less crowded and, what’s more, has less restrictions, meaning that you can enter more buildings, get into almost every corner and walk in awe exploring the atmosphere of the ancient past.
Visiting Ostia Antica is also a great idea to spend your day. Once the main harbour city of ancient Rome, today a big national park 25 km away from Rome and near the modern city of Ostia or Lido di Ostia, where you can cool off on a hot summer day in the Tyrrhenian sea.
While visiting Rome many people forget about the seaside which is quite reachable. There are many beaches in the vicinity to the capital city. The most famous of them are Sperlonga and Lido di Ostia. As already said, the latter is very close to the ancient Ostia, which means that both can be visited in one day. A great option to spend your time with family.
Sperlonga is a city that’s ideal for those who want to combine two things in one. Here you can find amazing beaches and the intrigue of the old town. There are many beautiful steps up the hill on the way to Centro Storico (the historic part of the city) and when you reach it you will be very excited to see the breathtaking views overlooking the blue sea.
Not many tourists know that Italy is the country of castles. There are plenty of them inside Rome and all around the country. Due to the Italian history, when all of the country was divided into small states with its reign living in his own castle, they are countless, mostly private and therefore don’t appear in the tourist guidebooks. Some of them are very popular sites to visit. Don’t hesitate to go Odescalchi castle in Bracciano, where you will see a stunning view with a picturesque Bracciano lake at the background. Another great option for medieval castle lovers is the castle of Bolsena.