Visit Bolsena, the Tuscia and other towns

Available, our mini guide of Bolsena and other towns of the Tuscia.
To get the best out of your holiday time here on the shores without missing what central Italy has to offer.
Bolsena, the pearl of high Latium
Bolsena is a wonderful town on the north bank of the lake Bolsena about 100 km from Rome in the Viterbo province also known as the “Tuscia”.
The town rich in history and culture, where iy is still possible to visit the ancient origins Etruscan-Roman Volsinii and the most characteristic medieval quarter.
Bolsena is also famous for being the “Miracle Town”, the “Corpus Christi” festival introduces by the Pope in honour of the Eucharistic Miracle that took place in 1263, sees nearly the whole population involved in the famous “Infiorata”, 3 km of design and pictures totally hand-made from the picking of the petals to the finished carpet.
On July 23rd and 24th is another important historical/religious festival, on this occasion, on a route of 5 piazzas you can witness the so called “Mysteries of Santa Cristina”, to be precise the static scenes of Santa Cristina’s martyrdom again portrayed by the citizen of Bolsena.
In Bolsena apart from visiting the romantic lanes and historical center and tasting the local specialities, there are other points of interest not to be missed:

  • The territorial museum of lake of Bolsena
  • The fresh water aquarium of lake Bolsena
  • The Monaldeschi della Cervara Castle (Home of the Museum and aquarium)
  • The Etruscan digs of Poggio Moscini
  • Piazza san Giovanni
  • Piazza San Rocco
  • The Town
  • Sala Cavour (for exhibitions)
  • Piazza Matteotti (seat of the town Council)
  • San Francesco’s Theatre
  • Santa Cristina Cathedral
  • The Eucharistic Miracle Alter (or the 4 columned alter)
  • The catacombs (entrance in S. Cristina’s Cathedral)
  • The Turona Park (5 km south of Bolsena)

Moving away from the historical center, going towards the banks of the lake, noted as the largest volcanic lake in Europe and the cleanest, in fact it is called “the lake to drink”!.
On of the first excursion surely to do is visit round the island Marta and Bisentina, wild and enchanted where it is possible to swim in crystal clear waters; by going to the port you can take the small ferry to the island about 10 km from Bolsena. Minimum excursion is 1 hour.
Along the lakeside you can run/jog, cycle and take long relaxing walks. It’s possible to do many water sports such a s sailing, water skiing, windsurfing, or dimply rent a boat or canoe.
In the summer months, above all in July and August along the water front and in the historical center, it’s possible to enjoy various events, musical, cultural and shows of all kinds, an example “Di Tuscia un Po’”, where you can discover the tastes and products of Tuscia Bolsena.
Also running through Bolsena is the “Via Francigena” that you can follow on foot or by bicycle, as you can the Bolsena hills.
Viterbo, the Pope City
Viterbo is not on the banks of lake Bolsena but 30 km away, but it’s history is very important and worth discovering.
Viterbo, known as the Pope City because from 1257 to 1281 was the Papal seat, thus giving the city a certain prestige.
It is also another part of the “Via Francigena” which covers a large part of the “Tuscia” right up to Rome.
There are several museums like the “Museo Civico” and the “Museo del Colle del Duomo” the Ceramic Museum and the Roberto Jappolo, not forgetting the Museo del Sodalizio dei Facchini di Santa Rosa.
Santa Rosa is the patron saint of Viterbo, and is remembered every year 3th September with the carrying of the santa Rosa machine: 100 porters carry through the center of Viterbo the sumptuous tower 29/30 meters high and weighing 5000 kg surrounded by a huge crowd from this comes under the patrimony of Unesco.
Saturnia Spa
Saturnia is one of the most visited thermal waters by people staying in Bolsena, one because it is not so far away, and two affordable. In fact it is possible to partake in wonderful Spa treatments or the free open air pools round the clock.
The Saturnia thermal complex is found in Tuscany, in the province of Grosseto, a short distance from the Latium borders, about one hour from Bolsena on the SS 74 and the SP 10 going through Gradoli and Latera.
Other than visiting Saturnia, well worth a visit is the archaeological museum housing many Etruscan and Roman pieces from the Ciacci colletion.
Civita di Bagnoregio
Civita di Bagnoregio is only one the most visited places in the area bu tourists, locals and photographers reknowned for it’s beauty.
Civita is known as “
The town that’s dying”. The town rests on “tufo” stone, constant erosion is crumbling it away. About 1 km away from Bagnoregio it is reached by an attractive bridge, that can only by crossed on foot. Once inside is truly beautiful and time seems to standstill, for this thousands of tourists from all over the world visit the town.
Orvieto the Cathedral, the Town
Orvieto rises upon on a hill of “tufo”, reached by a funicular is considered one of the most important Etruscan towns of central Italy.
One of the symbols of the town is most certainly the cathedral, a masterpiece of Italian sculpture, architecture, and medieval painting. Another very important work is Palazzo del Popolo dating from 1200.
Worth visiting are the churches San Giovenale, san Giovanni, San Domenico where it is possible to see the sarcophagus by Arnolfo Di Cambio.
Tarquinia, the Etruscan capital
Tarquinia, center of southern Etruria and Etruscan capital, internationally famous for its archaeology and intense cultural life, a population of around 16.000 and its about 40 km from Viterbo.
Most important is the Etruscan Neacropolis about 30 minutes by car from Tarquinia, near Montalto di Castro , the Vulci Park.
The town was built on a raise of land 133 meters above sea level and has an amazing panoramic view of the Marta river valley and Tyrrhenian sea.
The Tyrrhenian sea offers many beaches private and free where the tourists staying in Bolsena choose to spend the day.
There are several routes from Bolsena to Tarquinia but maybe the easiest is the SP3 and in any case is a pleasant drive through the Latium Maremma plains, about one hour.
The Monster Park Bomarzo.
Is found near the town of Bomarzo, Viterbo province, a most unique place and visited by many tourists from all over the world.
The Monster Park of Bomarzo was ordered by Vicino Orsini, a man of leadership and arms, it is thought by the architect Pirro Ligorio between 1552 and 1580, one of greatest architects of the second half 1500.
The decorations of the Monster Park of Bomarzo are in fact large sculpture in “peperino” stone, perfectly blended with the wild vegetation and surrounding woods, with well kept paths and grassland.
During your stay in Bolsena , the Monsters Park should not be missed.
Other towns in central Italy
Bolsena’s exclusive position in central Italy offers a great deal, even some of the most important cities of Italy can be reached with little difficulty.

  • Rome 110Km
  • Perugia 90 Km
  • Terni 70 Km
  • Assisi 100 Km
  • Siena 140Km
  • Florence 170 Km

These towns and cities can be reached in a variety of ways, possibly the car gives you the greatest freedom, but places like Rome where parking can be difficult, many choose the bus, Cotral (for Latium) and Sira (for Tuscany), another option is by train, departing from: Montefiascone, Orte, Orvieto and Viterbo, check times and compare prices for the best options.
Bus and train tickets can be bought from the newspaper shops in Bolsena, or directly on-line. For those travelling to Rome its possible to by the ticket BIRG, this will cover regional travel trains (Latium), ATAC (tram, buses and metro) in Rome.