In this short article, we like to tell you about and recommend an itinerary that you can do even within a single day, but obviously if you have more time, you can also do it in several days. It is an itinerary suitable for everyone, including children and elderly people.
- The abbey fortress, of medieval origin, but largely transformed between the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries);
- The Church of San Francesco, from 1327, with wooden altars and valuable paintings from the 15th and 16th centuries
- The Church of Sant’Andrea, built on a project by Pietro Camporese in neoclassical forms, devastated by bombs in the Second World War and restored by Florestano Di Fausto, with 6 bells.
- The Church of Santa Maria della Valle.
The Medieval Bridge of San Francesco
Do not forget, always in Subiaco, to visit the medieval bridge of San Francesco, originally from 1358, at this link we will tell you where it is and how to visit it.
Then, take the car and follow the signs for “Benedictine monasteries”. The first stop we recommend you to do is at the remains of the Villa of Nero.
The remains of the Villa of Nero
Remains of the Villa are still visible on the sides of Via Sublacense, on the right bank of the Aniene river, between the locality of Sorricella and the monastery of Santa Scolastica. The small rooms still visible were part of a much larger Roman villa, certainly one of the most ambitious works of Rome in the Imperial period.
The Benedictine monasteries
So you will have arrived in the vicinity of the Benedictine monasteries which are located no more than 5 km from Subiaco. We recommend that you take the time to visit the two main ones which are the Monastery of Santa Scolastica and the Monastery of San Benedetto (also called del Sacro Speco).
We also advise you to participate in one of the guided tours (free, but with the possibility of leaving a useful offer for the conservation and maintenance of the site) that will take you inside the monastery of the Sacro Speco, totally frescoed that has welcomed part of life of San Benedetto during a pilgrimage.
Inside it is also possible to see the oldest portrait of St. Francis of Assisi. A peculiarity, it is a portrait made when Francis was still alive and not posthumously, this is evident mainly from the fact that he is portrayed without the typical halo of a saint.
Environment, nature and relaxation
After having rested and eaten something, we recommend that you reach the waterfall and the small lake of San Benedetto (here you can see how to do it).
The San Benedetto lake is located no more than 5 minutes by car from the Monastery of the Sacro speco and from the parking lot it can be reached through a path about 10 minutes on foot.
The San Benedetto lake was created thanks to the damming of the Aniene river. Another famous dam can also be the one ordered by the emperor Nero and let the waters flow inside his villa.
The San Benedetto lake is famous for its shape and the turquoise color of its waters. It is often very crowded especially during the summer season and on weekends, so we recommend, if possible, to visit it during the week and maybe the spring and autumn periods.
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