Although we’ve been battling it out with an out of the ordinary weather scheme this year, summer is definitely here and, coming from someone stuck in the office most days of the week, it’s definitely taking a toll on us. The air is heavy with this past years’ work and all I can think of is, “when do I get to go to the beach!!”
Rome may not technically be near the sea, but there is a huge choice of lovely beaches to choose from, both near and not so near. All are filled with life, but there’s a wide variety of them, depending on what you’re looking for. Some are more family friendly; others have great music and cocktails; while some have panoramas you’d be crazy to miss. The choice is yours!
Fregene & Maccarese
Head over to Fregene for a day of friends and fun. The numerous stabilimenti offer all sorts of comforts, from lounge chair to sandwich bars, which in the afternoon become great places to have an aperitivo and some cocktails with friends. My favorite is Singita. At around 5pm they start laying out big white sheets on the sand with comfy pillows to sit on while you enjoy your afternoon. Every drink comes with a bag of freshly baked crispy pizza and tons of food! For a slightly more family friendly location, try Maccarese, only a few minutes down the road from Fregene.
Anzio & Nettuno
About an hour south of Rome you reach the seaside town of Anzio, famous for its Rome beaches. The beaches of Anzio and Nettuno (just down the road from one another), have been awarded blue flags for years thanks to their clear waters. They are scattered with the remains of ancient Roman Villas, dated back to the era of “Antium”, birthplace of Emperor Nero. My suggestion: head down to the beach at the Grotte di Nerone. Make sure to take a stroll through the center of town along the harbor, lined with great restaurants and gelato! And most important of all, you HAVE to try the pizza al taglio at Pucci. I kid you not, people come straight from the airport –luggage still in hand- to line up for a piece of their pizza! Ask around, anyone will be able to tell you where to find it. Anzio is also the point of departure for the Pontine Islands, Ponza and Ventotene.
Sperlonga & Terracina
Sperlonga is often referred to as the “Italian Santorini”, with its blue and white houses and its narrow streets full of souvenir shops and food joints. Visit the famous ‘I 300 scalini’ beach. You literally have to walk down 300 steps to get to the seashore. But on the good side, they take you down to a wonderful beach where you can rent cabana’s for the day, with the added benefit of having food and drinks brought to you on demand! Sperlonga is located in the southernmost part of the Lazio region, not far from the equally beautiful Terracina. Unlike Sperlonga’s greek-like style, the centro storico of Terracina fashions an ochre hue and green shutters, along extremely narrow cobblestone streets. Make sure you take a trip up to the Tempio di Giove, an archeological site from which you have a breathtaking view of the entire Tyrrhenian coast, all the way to the tip of Anzio!
Santa Severa & Santa Marinella
Santa Severa is yet another seaside town near Rome, located in the district of Santa Marinella. It is the perfect place for a calm and peaceful getaway without moving too far out of the city, and it is also filled with history. The piece de resistence of Santa Severa is the stunning castle along the beach on the edge of the water, once belonging to noble Roman families, and today home of cultural and musical displays. Along the streets of Santa Severa you will come across artisans busy at work creating unique medieval ceramics and other typical local products. For more information on Santa Marinella, take a look here.