The beauty of these places and of the Castelli Romani (Roman Castles) needs to be enjoyed to the full, even if you’re travelling by mountain bike. For this reason, the itinerary we’re suggesting is a dusty version of the Roman lake tour. We’ll be tracing the whole lake circuit until we enter the nearest park, the Castelli Romani Regional Park, situated to the east of the Albano volcanic crater. This whole tour involves a change in level of nearly 100 metres, and will certainly remind you that you don’t need to go far from Rome to discover a beautiful verdant paradise.
Lake Albano, via sacra and back
We follow the Appia Antica (ancient Appian Way) from Cecilia Metella, riding along a straight road with a slight gradient until we get the village of Frattocchie. We cycle through here and join the Via Papalina. This leads us to Castel Gandolfo, which we pass through in an easterly direction, keeping the lake on our left. We join a rough track, circling the lake on the south side until we reach the Via Sacra. This takes us to Lake Nemi, which we skirt by following provincial road no.76a until we get to Clivo Formello.
We turn left, and begin the climb up to the Park, later descending again on provincial road no.15d, which we stay on for a short distance. We turn left towards Rocca di Papa, which we barely enter before turning off left onto a rough road for an enjoyable single-track ride with plenty of bends. We continue downhill through the Park, and when we join up with the Via dei Laghi, we stay on it until we’ve completed the ride along the north side of the lake. We then continue back down to Rome. Our tour took us to a height of 940 metres and involved a 75-km circuit made up of various different types of road: the ideal terrain for your mountain bike