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So much to see, in and around Rome! This is our last week and we have quite a lot planned, including a visit to Pompeii and Herculaneum. At the end of our walking trip, two places we visited in Rome were first, the fort (Castel Sant Angelo) near the Vatican for which the initial purpose was a tomb for the Emporers of Rome, Hadrian, specifically ( Mausoleo Di Adriano); and second, the Etruscan Museum, a huge complex situated in the Villa Giulia, on the edge of the Boghese Park nea Flamina, where we first came I to Rome from Laboro.

  Castel Sant Angelo – Hadrian’s Tomb
  At the Villa Guilia

And just a few pictures from the huge collection, not nearly reprsentative:-

  

   

   
   

We missed two of the long stretches of walking around Campagnano because of Keith’s injury. There was one section in a local national park I’d like to come back to do. The towns we passed through by bus and train were very small. Campagnano Di Roma has some interesting buildings and a beautiful old yew tree. Labaro is like an outer suburb. The place we stayed is a regular spot for walkers and right across from the station for easy access to Rome’s Flaminio Station, convenient for the Etruscan Museum in Villa Giulia which we planned to visit.

  Monterosi town square

  Campagnano Di Roma

  The Once Splendid Pallazzo Sforza (18th C) in Campanano Di Roma

  The 300 Year Old Yew Tree – Campagnano Di Roma

  
The ‘4 Pini’ Albergo (now only 2) at Larbaro, conveniently opposite the station.

Just outside the walls of Sutri, not far from one of the better preserved, very old gates to the city and a marked point on the Via Francigena, is an archaeological site with both Etruscan tombs, an Amphitheatre, used by Romans but also showing signs that it was originally used by Etruscans, and an early Christian church, dug into the cliffs, also reusing an Etruscan site. We stayed in a beautiful stone cottage, next door to this site, a B&B called Etruscan Gardens – highly recommended.

  Etruscan Gardens

  Sutri from below

  Part of the Etruscan site

  Inside the Chistian (formerly Etruscan) Church

  Above the Amphitheatre

  

We stayed at a small B&B outside Vetralla, and the next morning walked into Vetralla, a very small town, where we were able to catch a bus to Capranica. The latter proved an unexpectedly pleasant visit because of its many unusually narrow streets and well preserved buildings. We had lunch here before heading on to Sutri.

     

  

Viterbo to Vetralla

Before setting out for Vetralla, we spent some more time exploring Viterbo, another old, walled, Medieval town, some of which was damaged during WW2. There is still the feel of the old city, in spite of the usual modern trappings, aerials, phone lines, satellite dishes and street signs. As in other towns, we stayed in the old city, near San Pellegrino – the Pilgrims Quarter.

 

   

 The Papal Palace, built between 1255 and 1265 is one of the city’s most famous buildings and provides a great viewpoint across part of the city. The Cathedral nearby has a museum attached which contains a mix of church relics, paintings, religious artefacts and vestments. It also provides a view of remnants of the burials in stone tombs of the cemetery over which it is built, including some excavation.

  
  
  
Many austere, Romanesque style, churches survive across the city and are still in use. Some of the Frescoes and other paintings have been retained and war damage repaired. We visited some of the churches but did not have time to see all. 

 

  
When we first arrived in Viterbo we did visit the Archaeological Museum which, as elsewhere, had an excellent exhibition of Etruscan tomb finds but also some example of buildings. It was interesting to see examples of roofing tiles dating back two thousand years or more and looking little different from some still in use today.

  
  
The many old fountains and squares with their public and private buildings are a feature of the town. We arrived on a Sunday evening and while there were plenty of people around, finding a place to eat proved difficult. The next day, the town seemed very lively, with plenty of friendly cafes where we could buy lunch before travelling on to Vetralla.

  

As Keith had an ankle injury, we caught a local train to Tre Croce station, not far from where we were staying, just North of Vetralla.

A relaxed walk, only 17 kms, some of it along stretches of the well preserved, Via Cassia, again. TBC

  
  
Looking back to Montefiascone. 
 

More Roman road still in use through a town!

 

   

It had rained during the night and the weather was still misty. However, the walk (17-18kms) was enjoyable and passed through varied country.  For most of the walk we followed a route above the lake, in several places, looking down on the patchwork of farmland, passing through vinyards and olive groves, as on other days. Their are significant Etruscan archaeological sites reportedly, along some of the route, artefacts from which are displayed in many museums we have visited throughout this trip. We stopped at a public picnic spot – Parco del Turano – which is near one of these sites, for morning tea. No access, to the sites, of course.

  
There is a great confusion of signs on this section of the walk, and there appear to be several possible ‘Via Francigena’ routes, here. We chose one, possibly not the route recommended in our notes as we missed a section of a Roman road (Via Cassia) but experienced a few more hills, an interesting old water mill (flour milling) not mentioned in the notes, more vinyards and a later section of Via Cassia, before heading up to Montefascione.

  
 
  
Again, there are papal links, here – the city of the Popes – and good wine country. The ‘Est, Est, Est’ story of the bishop who died from his desire to drink their very best wine, and over did it, originates here! His grave site has prominence near the Rocca dei Papi Di Montefiascone (recent, perhaps?) and the wine list at the restaurant we visited included ‘Est, Est, Est!’ 

  
  
  
It was rainy and cold, here, so only time for a little street walking in this attractive old, but very busy town.

  

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