Hello from Sabina - the district and the "person"

11/18/2009 - 06:00

Have lived full time in Sabina for some 10 years now - and around 30 non-consecutive years in Italy generally.  Sabina is a little known area around 60 km NE of Rome - the least populated area in Italy apparently - but woth glorious scenery - not unlike that of Tuscany or Umbria - but with more medieval villages or woods on the hilltops!  Despite being so conveniently located...direct trains to Rome (city and FCO airport) 45 / 105 min) and Florence, Siena, Assisi and the like are all within easy day trip distance - as is Naples/Capri /Sorrento with an early start and late return.  We even have a small-ish ski-resort that is popular with Romans wanting to get out of the city for a day or a weekend during the winter months. The Sabina has plenty to offer in terms of history and culture - just that the places are not famous. Plenty of local traditions - from festas, food festivals etc and of course typical food using local ingredients, and the olive oil produced here is considered to be amongst, if not the best in Italy thanks to the 0% acidity - but little has been done to market the oil on a truly commercial scale.Property prices have more-or-less held steady during the last 18 months,having risen somewhat between 2000 and 2007  after years of being way lower than anywhere else in central Italy.I love it...a few expats, some of whom are full-time residents others who just have a holiday home here, but no overbearing "colony / community" of us and there is little chance of running into a bus-load of foreign tourists anywhere - just the occasional foreign couple / family that have rented out a villa during the summer, and the odd coach of  Italian "pilgrims" following the St Francis trail (he lived here for a while - and created the first ever nativity scene in Greccio, a town just beyond the Sabina boundaries) or visiting the magnificent benedictine abbey in Farfa (where Jamie Oliver taught the monks to cook!).


Thanks for the info. Sabina is a stunning region.We're not that far north of you (Southern tip of Umbria). Can provide the exact location of the ski resort you mention?Antinello

In reply to by Antinello

Its called Terminillo....they have been investing in it recently with a few more lifts and a snow machine (or two?) but I doubt it would offer enough choice of pistes for a week's holiday etc - but for a weekend or day., just to get the skis on - more than adequate.  Lots of Roman's head off there on a Sat or Sunday...and I think it has just extended the ski pass area too. For more info, just google Terminillo and they have several sites all about it

Yes, it really is unspoilt...driving around the countryside, especially in the hills it seems impossible that Rome is only about 60 km away...and given that it is only a 20 min detour off the Rome - Florence motorway it still amazes me that it has remained such a secret!  I am sure that if you asked 100 people born and bred in Milan where Sabina was, most would look blank and at best, say somehwere near Rome.

Yes...this is the place!  According to local legend, the reason Romulus chose these women over those from othe nearby tribes was that they had a reputation for being great cooks!  Also interesting (well, I think!) is that in Italian they refer to the "ratto" rather than the rape of the Sabines...which actually translates, more or less, as kidnapping with a view to marriage...so perhaps not quite as grim as the idea of a mass rape!

Wow....what a question!  There are just so many of them!  Given me a few days and I'll try and come up with some of the best:there are however two websites that tell you whats happening "now":  www.sabinainfesta.it  and www.gosabina.comwww.sabina.it also gives info about some of the individual towns etc...some of which have been translated into English - but much is in Italian only. Inevitably most of the sagras are food related...local villages famous for a particular type of pasta and sauce...or mushrooms, or oil but there are others...medieval jousts, processions in costume etc etc...

That statue by Giambollogna about the Rape of the Sabine Women is one of my favourites. I always stand for a very long time in front of it whenever I go to the Piazza della Signoria in Florence. That one and Perseus and Medusa is the other one I love.