Many great things happen when you least expect it, and me finding one of the nicest places around Rome accidentally, by taking the wrong bus, was one of them. As I love nature a lot, Castel Gandolfo became one of my favorite places out of a “beaten path”. Picturesque and nature-rich, it is located 24 kilometers from Rome and is most known for accommodating the summer residence of Pope.
The papal summer residence impresses by its’ beauty: ancient ruins of Emperor Domitian’s palace, shady oak park, refined garden with parterres are a great place for a walk. Unfortunately, you can only visit the residence on a guided tour, which must be booked in Vatican museum in advance.
For me, however, Castel Gandolfo is much more than a place that hosts papal residence. There is a beautiful little neighborhood just above Logo di Albano volcanic crater lake. The scenery looks incredible even in the middle of winter, let alone spring or summer.
It won’t take you long to walk the streets of Castel Gandolfo. You can visit the main square – Piazza della Libertà, buy local products in little shops and enjoy your drink or meal at the restaurant with a panoramic view.
If you like sweets, there is a great small pasty-shop near the piazza. Personally, I enjoyed cones with cream the most. 🙂
Recommendations: take a relaxing walk from the city down the hill to swim or have a rest near the lake. In summer Logo di Albano is a great alternative to busy beaches. You can even do water sports there.
How to get there?
- By car
- By COTRAL bus from Anagnina (around 2 euro)
- By train from Rome Termini (€2.10). Once an hour. You can enjoy some scenes on the way there. Timetables: com
- By COTRAL bus from Frascati or Monte Porzio Catone. http://www.cotralspa.it/CalcolaPercorso.aspx