Sperlonga was my beach destination of choice when I worked in Rome during the early 1980s. I used to get the train from Rome to Fondi-Sperlonga station located a few kilometres inland and then hitch a ride to Sperlonga. If I was very lucky, one of the dashing guys who worked for the Goodyear Blimp Europa (then housed in Capena, where I lived) would give me a lift on one their 900 cc Ducati motorbikes. It makes my hair stand on end now (we didn’t wear helmets) but then, with the wind streaming through my flowing locks as we sped down the coast road from Rome, to be young was very heaven.


Life in Sperlonga is divided between the beach (during the day) and the picturesque white town clinging to the cliff above (by night). The two are connected by an exhausting series of stone steps. The town is upmarket and glamorous, populated in part by sun-kissed Romans who hire a house for the summer season (the wives and kids) and are then joined at the weekend by their husbands: it’s a wonderful place for (beautiful) people watching. There are a number of  good restaurants (fish and other types), where you can eat overlooking the beach.

I recommend Sperlonga to my holiday home guests and everybody loves it: it’s definitely worth the 2-3 hour drive from Rome and one of the very best seaside destinations within striking distance of the city.

In the old days, we used to sleep and party on the beach at night although I’m sure that’s out of the question nowadays. There is a good selection of hotels at beach and town level. One option if you are on a budget is to camp at one of the campsites slightly out of town. This offers the advantage of a private beach belonging to the campsite and a good, reasonable campsite restaurant. Another cheaper option if you have a car is to stay in Fondi and then drive to Sperlonga for the day.

Article text by Juliet Haydock. The Sperlonga Panorama Da Levante is adapted from an original photo by ‘MM’ at Wikimedia Commons and licensed under public domain.