Sperlonga is a coastal town in the province of Latina, Italy, about halfway between Rome and Naples. It is best known for the ancient Roman sea grotto discovered in the grounds of the Villa of Tiberius containing the important and spectacular Sperlonga sculptures, which are displayed in a museum on the site.
A perfect haven for visitors exhausted after the rigours of the art cities, it tends to have a siren effect and it’s easy to understand why: two divine golden sand crescent beaches stretch out from a picture postcard perfect Mediterranean village, a stack of tiny white-washed shuttered houses with to-die-for roof terraces, heaped up one on top of the other on a soaring limestone promontory.
Sperlonga is regularly awarded the prestigious environmental rating ‘Bandiera blu d’Europa’ (European blue ﬂag) for its beautifully clean sea and wonderful beaches which extend for miles.
BEST RENTAL VACATION:
Planning vacation means you need a vacation rental to stay and relax near the most scenic and interesting site. CuddlyNest has an enormous range of vacation rental round the city. Whether you want to stay within the city want to be just near the beach, we have a wide selection to choose from. Search for available rental places in the search bar and confirm your vacation rental just before reaching your destination.
CuddlyNest not only serves you as a vacation rental guide but also as a tourist guide. We help you choose the best places to visit during your stay. Here are few things that will help you make your vacations more meaningful and fun.
The picturesque town is a hidden gem enjoyed by those in the know. The tiny town’s pristine beaches have been awarded the European Blue Flag for quality. In addition to the seaside Sperlonga main attraction is the Grotta di Tiberio at the end of the northernmost beach. Here a Roman villa stood together with the grotto created by Emperor Tiberius in the 1st century AD. The Grotto of Tiberius is a limestone cave complex which was used by the Emperor for entertaining. An Archaeological Museum stands on the grounds of Tiberius’s former villa. Here you can see sculptures found in the grotto. Also in Sperlonga is the Church of Santa Maria with medieval mosaics and the Torre Truglia (1532) watchtower facing the sea.
VISIT THE MUSEUM:
A visit to the archaeological museum of Sperlonga is a must do in Sperlonga for anyone with the slightest interest in mythology or the history of the Roman Empire. Outside by the sea you can explore Tiberius’ grotto and study the founding stones and layout of his villa, and inside the museum the five groups of sculptures found in the grotto have been restored.
The sculptures that date back to the early Imperial period are in a highly expressionistic style known as Hellenistic baroque, where movements and sentiments are charmingly exaggerated. Here you can see Odysseus and his men preparing to blind the drunken, one eyed cyclops Polyphemus with an olive stick, and the fragmented Scylla group where Odysseus’ ship is attacked by a many headed monster. This centerpiece is displayed as a puzzle with quite a few missing pieces, so it is an advantage to know the story or be gifted with a vivid imagination.
EXPLORE THE GROTTO:
If you walk along the beach for about an hour, you’ll reach the famous grotto, where the Roman Emperor Tiberius had installed groups of sculptures celebrating the deeds of Odysseus. The natural grotto collapsed in 26 AD and the sculptures lay crushed, for almost 2000 years, until they were discovered in 1957 by civil engineers building the coastal road above the site.
In Roman times, the grotto was used as a dining space. A fish pond ran into the grotto and in the middle there was a rectangular island in the fish pond with a light pavilion and couches were guest could eat and and admire the artwork.as well as the artificial stalactites and encrustations and other theatrics decorating the walls.
Today there are just the bare walls of rough stone, but you can go island hopping in the grotto. Just remember there is no entrance from the beach. Only point of access is through the archaeological museum.
INVADE A WATCHTOWER:
Torre Truglia looks like a desert fortress used by the French foreign legion, but it is a proper watchtower that has been destroyed and resurrected several times over the centuries. The present watchtower was built on the foundation of an ancient roman ruin in 1532, but only 2 years later it was destroyed when Barbarossa. This happened several times over the course of the next centuries, but from 1870 the tower has been used by public administration and as a small museum. Just go inside and have a look around.
PORT OF SPERLONGA:
The recently expanded and refurbished Sperlonga tourist port is a dock-shaped port, according to a pattern of the internal seas such as the Mediterranean, where it is often exploited by natural waves with artificial works. The harbor was built around 1960 to meet the needs of local fishermen and yachtsmen. With the years the tourist and recreational function has become prevalent thanks to the quality of marine waters, the beauty of the coast and the proximity of the Pontine Islands, located within 30 nautical miles.
An overflow pier that starts from the Truglia tower headland and extends for 200 m in the direction of NW - SE, and a curved line undercut jetty delimits two basins separated by a central arm, with an overall surface of 13,000 square meters, with a Access channel, 13 m long and 90 m long.