An imposing staircase cuts the town in half – climb up it and be amazed at the stunning views around you!

A little town in the heart of the Sabina area, Cantalice overlooks the Rieti plain, dominating it from its lofty position, with a view of the three lakes in upper Lazio, and is surrounded by the (partial) Nature Reserve of Lungo and Ripasottile Lakes where a nature trail winds past some quaint farmhouses built on piles, providing great opportunities for photography and getting up close to dove to the typical lake wildlife on the shores of the lakes.

History lovers will have a field day here: Cantalice, had, like many Rieti hill towns a medieval centre, of which many features remain, including the defensive tower and the impressive Church of San Felice.

On both sides of the staircase that distinguishes the town, what you see will remind you of a nativity scene: stone houses, stairs, fountains and little churches and religious icons. Buildings are squashed closely together, the streets mere alleyways, in contrast to the huge spaces of the extensive Rieti plain the town towers over.

What’s more, numerous footpaths and picturesque nature trails start from Cantalice, taking you as far as Terminillo and Leonessa. The town lies on the St Francis Trail, which allows visitors to take in the four Franciscan Sanctuaries of the Santa Reatina Valley.

Strengozze” (long pasta with rectangular cross-section) is the splendid local speciality – simply water, wheat flour, tomatoes, marjoram and garlic, but what a treat!

Cantalice, in the Rieti Province, lies 93 kilometres from Rome.

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Cities and Villages