GAETA

 
 Monte Orlando Regional Park 
Ancient access to the fortified town
  S.Francesco's Cathedral 
view from the harbor 
 Angioino Aragonese Castle
view from the medieval district
  Monte Orlando Regional Park 
gun powder storage
 Monte Orlando Regional Park 
naturalistic trial

Among the most interesting areas of the Tyrrhenian Sea, Gaeta has an ancient touring vocation. It tells the tale, maintained by Virgilio's poem, that on these beaches Caieta, Enea's nurse, was buried.   Gaeta's origin is therefore antecedent that of Rome, but the first certain facts on the existence of an urban community trace back to the first conquests of Southern Lazio on behalf of the Romans, who made of it a very great touring centre. 
Mansions and mausoleums (a famous one is that of Lucio Munazio Planco) testify the splendor of that period. In medieval ages, particularly in the tenth century, the Dukedom of Gaeta reached a remarkable prosperity; the wonderful Sant'Erasmo bell tower ( XII century) and the Cathedral (consecrated in 110) are real architectural pearls. Among the numerous  churches of Byzantine, Romanesque and Gothic  origins, we can piont out those of San Giovanni a Mare, Santa Lucia and Santa Caterina. The Castle, however, built between the IX and the XVI century, is the most imposing building of the ancient centre. It represents, physically and symbolically, the role of fortress engaged by the town towards the Kingdom of Naples, whose history Gaeta will be bind to in the course of the centuries until the famous episode of the Piedmontese Siege ended on 13th  February 1861 with the falling of the Bourbons' Dynasty. 
Today, between the ancient centre of S. Erasmo and the wonderful Serapo beach - considered a pearl of the Mediterranean - there is the naturalistic park of Monte Orlando: 53 hectares of vegetation in an uncontaminated environment, among the most fascinating of the Latium coast. 
From the overhanging walls on the sea, the lucky visitor can enjoy a vast and enchanting view, which wanders from the Pontine Islands to the Promontory of Circeo, from the Aurunci Mountains to the Vesuvio and to the Gulf of Naples. The very rich artistic patrimony of Gaeta is completed by the numerous pictorial works gathered in the Diocesan Museum, in the Picture-gallery of Palazzo De Vio (with works of Giovanni from Gaeta, Luca Giordano and Sebastiano Conca), and in the various churches of the town. To be mentioned, among these, the grand Church of S. Francesco, always visible from the land and from the  sea, interesting example  of Neo-gothic architecture commissioned by Ferdinand II of Bourbon in 1849 on invitation of Pio X, exiled in Gaeta. 
Today, a great liveliness of tourist initiatives are related to the prestigious past  which make this laughing town the ideal place for a holiday suitable for the public of every age and demand.