Sermoneta, ItalyThis wonderfully preserved medieval town, south of Rome in the region of Lazio, is an enjoyable daytrip from Italy’s capital.

Tiny Sermoneta is truly a pleasure to visit, and feels light years away from the chaos of Rome. Wander the winding, cobblestone streets and enjoy the panoramic views over the valley. On clear days, you have a perfect view down to the seaside.

The Caetani family owned these lands and constructed the imposing Sermoneta castle, but its most illustrious owner was Lucrezia Borgia (1480-1519), daughter of Rodrigo Borgia (better known as Pope Alexander VI).

The Borgia family was infamous for  its penchant for intrigue and countless poisonings. Lucrezia’s brother, Cesare Borgia, was universally feared and was thought to have been Niccolò Machiavelli’s model for The Prince.

Sermoneta, ItalyLucrezia Borgia’s  bedchambers are still preserved in the castle and hourly tours take you through the tunnels and towers of the fortress.

You’ll have the most fun just wandering Sermoneta’s narrow, winding streets and climbing up and down its many steps to catch glimpses over the town from above. Enjoy lunch or dinner here in one of the town’s many restaurants.

The slow pace of this picture-perfect town makes it a wonderful escape from the hectic pace of Rome.

And its proximity to the beautiful seaside in Sabaudia and Sperlonga  means it can easily combined with a  beach escape.

Sermoneta, Italy