Circeo National Park

Circeo National Park on the coast south of Rome is well worth a visit. It encompasses a number of very different environments. A promontory, visible from far away, has given the name to the park. This promontory is characterized by forest dominated by oaks but on the side facing the sea these are replaced by junipers. The promontory is easily reached from San Felice Circeo and is partly accessible by car. There are also trails, including one leading to the Peak of Circeo at 541 m a.s.l.

Along the coast northwest of the promontory is a 25 km long sandbar with dunes, partly with bare sand and partly covered by three species of junipers. In summer the sandy shores are full of tourists. Inside the dunes there are a series of lakes and marshes protected by the international Ramsar Convention because of their richness of waterfowl.

Further inland is a 3260 ha large forest, including some swamp forests, the last remnant of the Pontine Marshlands which were otherwise completely drained during the time of Mussolini. Here is also a visitors centre

On the un inhabited island Zannone the visitor can experience Mediterranean shrublands and heaths, including the colourful lavender.

Within the park are also the Dominitians Villa from the first century and the botanical garden at Villa Fogliano. The town Sabaudia is also inside the borders of the park.

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