Sightseeing tours of Gaeta & Sperlonga

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Sperlonga - View
Sperlonga - RuinsSperlonga - Grotto InteriorSperlonga - SculpturesSperlonga - BeachSperlonga  - GrottoSperlonga - View

Sperlonga is a little gem located in the province of Latina, Lazio.

The small seaside town is famous for its whitewashed houses, narrow streets that often end in breath-taking terrace over the sea and stunning beaches.

The white sand shores, turquoise water and beautiful trees create a unique and luxurious scenario.

However due to its proximity with the Pontine Marshes for many years the town wasn’t very prosperous. The Romans connected Sperlonga with Rome by the Via Appia. Its grotto on the coast attracted the Emperor Tiberius who built a villa here. After the decline of the Roman Empire Tiberius’ residence became a refuge for the local population. The region was constantly under the attack of the Saracens. Many watchtowers were built in order to keep the locals safer. The city decline rich is high during the 16th century when Frederick Barbarossa attacked and destroyed the town.

Finally during the 18th and 19th centuries many rich residences were built in the Sperlonga’s area.

However only after the construction of the coastal road Via Flacca the city started to become a very popular touristic destination.

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Sperlonga most important cultural attraction is the Villa of Tiberius. The ruins of the villa were hidden for centuries; it was rediscovered in 1957 during the construction of Via Flacca. The villa was called La Grotta (the cavern) because its banqueting hall was located in a natural grotto. A museum was built where once stood the villa; the gorgeous statues found in the cave are now housed here.

Interesting is also the oldest church of Sperlonga: the former Church of Saint Mary built during the 12th century. Today the deconsecrated building is used to host cultural events and performances. While the edifice was restored years ago some beautiful medieval mosaics were discovered.


Gaeta - Monte Orlando View
Gaeta - Sea ViewGaeta - Santuario Santissima AnnunziataGaeta - Church of Ss Erasmo and Marciano

Gaeta is a stunning city located between Rome and Naples on the hills of Monte Orlando. Thanks to its location the town has played an important role in the history of central Italy.

The first settlement was an Ionian colony; later the city was controlled by the roman. Many nobles had here their summer villas. During this period the city was fortified for the first time.

After the Rome’s decline the city passed under the control of the Byzantine Empire. Its port grew in importance and Gaeta started an advantageous trade business.

In 1140 the city became part of the Kingdom of the two Sicily. Due to its strategic position the city was theatre of many battles. During the 13th century it passed under Frederick II command for few years. The Emperor strengthened Gaeta’s fortifications. The town eventually went back under the control of the Sicilian kingdom.

During the 15th century the city was transformed into a battle field, the war between the French and the Naples Kings was fought here. At the beginning of the 16th century the French retired their troops and left the city for good.

After two centuries of relative peace during the 19th century the city was involved in many battles again, the peace was restored only in 1861 when Gaeta was finally annexed to the Kingdom of Italy.

Things to see

Gaeta is now a popular touristic destination. Its beautiful beaches and unique history attract every years many visitors.

The city can count on many attractions. One of the most important is the Aragonese-Angevine Castle. Built to protect the city during the barbarian invasions this massive fortress was strengthened many times.

The Mausoleum of Lucius Munatius Plancus is a very well preserved roman mausoleum located right at the top of Monte Orlando.

Very interesting is also the SS. Trinita’s Sanctuary, its Crucifix Chapel was built on a rock that felt from a cliff.

The Cathedral of Assunta e Sant’Erasmo was built during the 12th century. It was restyled many times; its bell tower built with roman elements is a unique piece of art.

Gaeta offers also a delicious cuisine. The traditional Tiella is its most famous dish; it is very similar to a calzone but can be stuffed with many mouth-watering ingredients. Its olives are famous all around the world.