From the north
Take the motorway A1 FIRENZE-ROMA and leave it at the Ponzano Soratte toll, then follow the indications to Poggio Mirteto. Once arrived in Poggio Mirteto, drive straight on, direction Rieti.
From the south
Take the motorway A1 NAPOLI-ROMA, at San Cesareo take the diversion to the motorway A1 FIRENZE-ROMA, direction Roma; leave the motorway at the Fiano Romano toll and then follow SS4 Salaria, direction Rieti until you arrive at Passo Corese. From there drive straight on along the SS 313. After having passed the train station of Poggio Mirteto Scalo turn right to Poggio Mirteto and then turn left, direction Rieti.
Poggio Catino can be reached from Rome and from Orte with the train line FIUMICINO AEROPORTO-ROMA-ORTE. The nearest station is Poggio Mirteto Scalo. For each arriving train there is a blue-coloured COTRAL-bus at the station for Poggio Catino.
For further information:
Servizio FS informa tel. (892021)da rete fissa.
Poggio Catino and Catino are two town centres located near each other at the altitude of 385 m above sea level and together they form one municipality. These centres are set on the Sabine hills, on top of which it is possible to admire a wide and luminous landscape that extends from the south-east to the north-west.
Monte Soratte rises opposite Poggio Catino and Catino, on which strong colours of twilight and long shadows of the hills play as if in a painting.
The Longobards of the duchy of Spoleto constructed Catino towards the end of the seventh century and built the fortress denominated "la Rocca con Torre" with the intention to guard the access to the road that linked Rieti with Sabina, to create rich soils and also an important strategic position near the borders of their dominion. Catino managed to remain independent from the nearby Farfa Monastery until the eleventh century, when it was acquiered by this together with the large terrains surrounding it.
Poggio Catino (Podium de Catino) was mentioned for the first time in 1072 in Farfa's records and it was built on mount Moricone in order to face the increase in population of the nearby living area. Catino indeed did not allow any enlargement of the town.
Towards the end of the 12th century both living areas became one free municipality, obtaining some autonomy, although it was conditioned by the presence of local noblemen.
Among these there were the Counts di Eustachio, Orsini, Savelli, Capizucchi and Olgiati, the latter ones from 1614 to 1816, when pope Paolo VII abolished their feudal rights. In October 1816 Giovan Battista Olgiati legally renounced the baronial jurisdiction of both feuds and in 1853 Poggio Catino became an autonomous municipality and the living area of Catino became its hamlet.
Baronal palace Olgiati
Built in an eminent position on Moricone hill, the Palace was bought in 1614 by Settimio Olgiati di Como, who transformed it into a luxurious palace.
With a taste for the spectacular, he wanted the inside of the palace to be decorated with stuccos, mirrors, marble and paintings.
The building complex was purchased by the Municipality of Poggio Catino in 1980.
The Castle of Catino
The pentagonal, over twenty meters high tower has been perfectly conserved.
The castle is built with pieces of stone which are sometimes alternated by larger blocks with perfectly regular edges, and it narrows towards the top.
The tower, a part of the east side walls and two embattled towers set on the corners are well conserved.
This small fortress was built for military purposes and the village was built around the castle over the centuries.
Church of Santa Maria dei Nobili
The church is called "Mother of all churches set in the Catino area" on a memorial tablet of 1210.
It used to belong to Uberto, a Longobard and the counsel of Farfa Abbey, who lived around 1000. The church was built on the remains of a roman Villa with "Silla baths" (imposing ruins set nearby) being a luxurious part of it.
The church is presumed to date back to the ninth century. The most ancient document that mentions it, goes back to the date 13th May 1316 and is the Will of a nobleman from Catino, called Berardo, figlio di Berardo. "The monks of the fraternity of Hermits of Sant'Agostino and the church of Sant'Agostino" are cited in the Will.
Annexed to the church there is a small monastery that used to host monks. White walls still preserve parts of frescos. Above the altar there is a Madonna with a child and the inscription: "This is a work of Brother Agustino del Bartolomeo of Catino on the day 27 August 1578."
Church of San Nicola di Bari
In 1621 Marquis Settimio Olgiati built a new Temple with nave and two aisles and an apse on the foundations of the Old Church, now dilapidated and unfit for use. The church was consecrated by Cardinal Carlo Rezzonico on 19th July 1774.
Immured on the wall of the right aisle there is a travertine cinerary Urn that dates back to the second century a.C. with friezes and an inscription on it.
VIXIT ANNO X
MENSES X DIES XXV
A sixteenth century painting of the Umbrian-Roman school representing the Saint with a cross is conserved in good conditions on the altar of Sant' Elena (at the end of the right aisle).
Monte Tancia (1292 m above sea level, Poggio Catino)
Tancia, among the highest peaks of the Sabine mountains, represents one of the most beautiful areas of Sabina. A wonderful landscape of still uncontaminated environment can be admired from this area. Along the well-marked paths and on the warmer sides of the hill it is possible to admire the Mediterranean vegetation with woods of holm-oaks that above 800 m give space to pastures, meadows and beechwoods. At some points this area is almost inaccessible for man, and that is why several animal species have managed to survive the extinction.
The villa "dei Casoni" and the Baths of Lucilla
The villa called "dei Casoni" is set in San Valentino, in Poggio Mirteto. It has been only partly digged and the foundations, the cryptoporticus, the frontal part with ten niches and a fountain that embellished the garden are visible.
In addition to being a very interesting archaeological and historical-artistic site thanks to the presence of the Sanctuary of Vescovio and the remains of ancient Forum Novum, this place offers the possibility of nice walks on the fields that have been equipped for picnics and are surrounded by pines and cypresses.
Regional Nature Reserve Tevere Farfa:
The Nature Reserve Tevere Farfa was founded in 1977, after the construction of a hydroelectric dam. The reserve extends on 700 hectares around the confluence of River Tevere and River Farfa and is characterized by marshy areas and sheets of water. Today the park is one of the most important damp areas in Lazio and it provides elevated routes that allow crossing the damp areas, and also several look-out points. In 1994 an Educational park was created. It offers an anthropological museum and guided tours for example by bicycles, and equipped picnic areas.
For further information:
Centro visite ed Uffici:
Casale della Cesa
Via Tiberina km.35
Torrita Tiberina (RM)
The gastronomic specialty of the area are the mushrooms of Catino. The surrounding mountains are a prominent source for mushroom experts. The area is also rich in "porcini" mushrooms. The festivals held in Poggio Catino are that of Panzanella that celebrates a local dish with close ties to rural world, and that of grapes, held in September.
Relais Borgo Paraelios
Via Colicchia-Valle Colicchia-
B&B Il Paese delle Meraviglie
Via Mirtense km.5
Agriturismo Il Trio
Agriturismo La Preda
via Palombara n.23