Lazio (Latium) is the central region of the Italian peninsula, where Rome, the State capital, lies.
The whole area is strictly connected to the Roman Empire history, which moved its first steps from a small hamlet, to conquer the Mediterranean Basin and Northern Europe. Latium is also well known for its beautiful landscapes, for its castles (Castelli Romani) and for the Etruscan history of the inner lands, around Viterbo, which goes under the name of ‘La Tuscia’, where long-forgotten hamlets and villages are coming to a new life. The ‘Castelli Romani’ are a great example of the Roman idle life of nobles and rich families, who used to spend a lot of time outside the fussy and lousy Rome. Tivoli, a small town few miles away from the Capital, hosts two marvelous villas: the medieval Villa d’Este (which was also a Pope residence) and Villa Adriana. They witness the gay history of Rome, for centuries as per our Untold History Tourswhich lead through the magnificent opulence of fountains, statues, gardens and thermal baths. In details, Villa Adriana was built by Emperor Adrian to celebrate his romance with the young Antinoo, a faithful young military who was his beloved, but died in battle.
Gay love and romance were very common during the Roman Empire. Homosexuality was not considered a sin or something perverted, nay it was said to be the truest form of faithfulness and authentic friendship between men. Also, it was an honor to become the ‘preferred’ scholar to a teacher and homosexual love between them was a sort of initiation to adult life. This Greek tradition of homosexuality is clear and manifested in many masterworks of later artists: Michelangelo, in his Sistine Chapel, recalls his personal shady life and his latent homosexuality, as well as Caravaggio, Botticelli and many others. These topics are widely treated in our Untold History Tours, dedicated to the Roman life and to the Colosseum gladiators
The glory of the Roman Empire is celebrated everywhere, in Rome: from the Colosseum to the Vatican Museums, to the marvelous Sistine Chapel and the fountains, to the Palatine Fora, to the Pantheon and the Caracalla thermal baths, just to mention a few.
Nowadays, Rome is still a true gay-friendly city, with bar and pubs celebrating diversity as a pride. In summer, the Gay Village opens for the season at the Testaccio (a Roman neighborhood) and there are a lot of hotels which really offer friendly accommodation.
Last but not least: try the Roman cuisine. It is very popular, base of simple recipes but definitely unique. The artichokes the Jewish way, for example, or pasta all’Amatriciana, or, again the Abbacchio (lamb) are just a few of truly great dishes of the Roman food experience.