Just one hour from Rome, one of Italy's hidden gems
also known as the Sabine hills, have remained unspoiled and quite undiscovered, despite being so close to Rome. It’s still largely rural: a place of small olive farms, quiet hilltop villages, crumbling castles. So grab your camera, get in the car and go for an explore.
Some of our favourite things to do in the Sabina:
Tour the medieval villages: two of the prettiest local villages, Casperia and Roccantica are about 15 minutes away but there are many more to explore. Poggio Catino, our nearest village, has pretty, winding streets and it’s very own castle (2 actually!) and pentagonal tower. Other favourites include Bocchignano, Rochette, Montenero, Montasola, Salisano…
Local villages are strongly attached to their traditional festivals and events, so there’s always something going on. In the summer months especially local villages all hold festivals with music, dancing and most importantly food and wine! Follow our Facebook page to keep up to date with local events
The Sabina is rapidly gaining an excellent reputation for quality food, close by you can find a number of restaurants offering organic produce, locally raised meat, world class pizza. Just down the road is a restaurant with a Michelin starred chef. If you want a gelato, you are spoiled for choice: in the village of Poggio Catino itself is the bar Catino C’è, where people come from miles around to enjoy the excellent ice cream and the fabulous view. Poggio Mirteto also has several ice cream shops to choose from. All these places are shown on our interactive map so you can find them easily.
Farfa Abbey, a very ancient monastery, was once the site of one of Europe’s biggest markets. You wouldn’t guess that now, the setting is very calm and tranquil, but you can still see the shopkeeper’s counters on the houses lining the streets around the monastery. You can visit the monastery and church and investigate the monastery’s herbalist shop and some other small shops, including one that sells handmade textiles. Farfa regularly hosts events, and on the 1st sunday of the month there’s an antiques and local produce market.
A little further up the mountain is the secluded hermit’s cave Grotta di San Michele. A tiny chapel hidden in the rock, it’s very atmospheric. Near the little bridge where you park for the Grotta there are picnic tables and more trails into the forest, follow the stream and see where it takes you!From here if you drive up to the top of the mountain pass you’ll find more picnic areas, more trails, and great views into the Rietina Valley and the mountains beyond.
At the Tevere Nature Reserve you can take boat trips along the River Tiber or explore the riverside on boardwalks.
Mount Soratte is the solitary mountain looming over the Tiber Valley and dominating the view from the villa. Soratte Nature Reserve has a number of hiking trails, and the mountain also hides extensive bunkers built during and after World War II, Soratte Bunkers hold regular open days.
You can find all these places and more on our interactive map.