Every year, millions of people visit the "Bel Paese" ("Beautiful Country"), not only to appreciate its artistic beauty and natural landscape, but also to try out the typical products that have a unique taste, as is well known. Rome and the Lazio Region, with their countless culinary specialities, participate in great style in this Italian gastronomic heritage. However, there is often no better place than the village festivals to taste truly local products, freshly picked and cooked by the inhabitants themselves. In this article, you will find the most appetising festivals around the capital, which take place every year between May and September.
According to Italian tradition, many Roman festivals celebrate first courses based on pizza and pasta. In June, in Lariano (about 50 km south of Rome), we find the Pizza and Beer Festival, where you can savour 50 types of pizza, some even suitable for those with celiac disease, and dozens of different craft beers, all accompanied by various events, music and dance.
Also in June, in Nerola (50 km north of Rome), there is the Sagra delle Stracciose e degli Arrosticini, where you can taste typical products of the Roman Sabina area. Stracciose are typical homemade egg fettuccine, usually seasoned with garlic, oil, tomato and basil. To this delicious first course, you can add the grilled sheep arrosticini (typical skewers from Abruzzo and Central Italy in general), bruschette with typical Nerolan oil and local wine.
In July, in Canale Monterano (about 50 km from Rome, near Lake Bracciano), we find the Sagra del Lombrichello, a long pasta made with water and flour, typical of the culinary tradition in northern Lazio. Formerly the pasta of the poor, it can be prepared with various sauces: amatriciana, truffle, "all'orto" (with vegetables) or with seafood.
In August, we recommend you to visit Anguillara Sabazia (40 km from Rome), on Lake Bracciano, for the Festival of Pizzole, filled pizzas that are both savoury and sweet. A simple product in a magical place, which will let you enjoy all the beauty of an ancient village on the most famous lake of Lazio. Also in August, in the village of Ponticelli (in the province of Rieti, about 50 km from the city), there is the Sagra dei Maccaruni, a hand-rolled pasta, the recipe of which is jealously guarded by the locals. This festival is part of a larger event known as "Riviviamo il Centro Storico" ("Let's relive the Old Town"), during which all the squares and viewpoints of the area are filled with acrobats and street performers who revive ancient beauty and local traditions.
If you are a lover of meat, in June we recommend you head to Lariano for the Festival of Pappardelle al Cinghiale, one of the old towns most famous for the Roman Castles. Pappardelle is a long handmade pasta, seasoned with a delicious wild boar meat sauce. You will find other typical dishes too in this tasty festival: wild boar stew with potatoes and olives, sausage, beans with wild boar sauce and the famous local bread. All exclusively accompanied by a glass of wine from the Castles.
If, on the other hand, you prefer fish, we recommend the Fiumicino Fish Festival, one of the oldest festivals around the capital, which takes place in June. The festival is also famous for its giant frying pan, about 4 metres in diameter and 2 metres high, built specifically to fry the fish during the event.
If you love garden products, you cannot miss the Sagra degli Sparaci di Percile (about 50 km from the city), where the typical dish of pasta is celebrated, seasoned with delicious asparagus from the area, all accompanied by an omelette, homemade sausages and a good wine.
While as far as fruit is concerned, the famous Sagra delle Fragole (Strawberry Festival) in Nemi (30 kilometres south of Rome) is not to be missed, which has been held every year on the first Sunday of June, since 1922! During the festival, you can taste the strawberries in their many different preparations and attend the traditional parade of strawberry floats, where the women of the village dress in traditional clothes. Another event not to be missed, in July, is the Festival of Fellacciano di Bellegra (about 65 km from Rome), which celebrates the fig typical of the area.
If you love products with a more refined taste, such as truffles, we recommend you visit Ciciliano (about 45 km from Rome), where in July the Festival of summer truffles is held, with other typical products available. However, if you prefer mushrooms, in September there are two festivals dedicated to the porcini mushroom in which you can participate: one takes place in Rocca Priora, in the heart of the Roman Castles, and the other in Lariano. In both, you can try various local mushroom-based specialities.
If your mouth was watering and you rightly decided to try all the festivals without missing one, remember that our Rome establishments will be happy to accommodate you for your stay: Roma Camping in Town, for a stay near the city centre; Fabulous Village, to stay in nature and visit the Roman Castles; and I Pini Family Park, great for exploring the festivals to the north and east of Rome.
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