Gaeta is a beautiful city in the province of Latina within the Lazio region, located in southern Italy. It is situated on a peninsula, which juts out into the Tyrhennian Sea and occupies a strategic location on Italy’s west coast. This charming port is set between Rome and Naples, and overlooks the deep blue Tyrrhenian Sea.
It was a strategic fortress of the Roman Empire and even today it retains the ancient fortification walls, which made it a stronghold in its heyday.
Its history as a resort town dates back to the Imperial Roman period. In spite of lacking a train station, it is a very popular summer destination due to the presence of its seven fabulous beaches.
These beaches are flocked by locals and visitors who gather to soak up the sun and watch the surfing events. The town is a fishing hub and an oil port, and it is also home to a NATO base.
Skyline with colorful houses
This port town is divided into two parts; the new town is spread along the bay, while the medieval old town is at the end of the promontory, topped by the Castello and Torre di Orlando.
A Little Bit Of History
The town is perched high on the hillside so that the residents could look out easily over the sea. It is this strategic position that afforded Gaeta an advantage over a possible invasion.
The port town was valued as a military stronghold by the ancient Romans, while wealthy Roman citizens liked it for its mild weather conditions.
It was called Caieta during Roman times and the original foundations for this town were laid out by the Romans in the 4th century BC.
After the fall of the Roman Empire in the 5th century AD, this port town remained loyal to the Byzantine Empire and preserved its independence through the Gothic, Lombard and Saracen wars.
It prospered greatly under the Normans and became the center of struggle for succession to the throne of Naples. It became a part of the Kingdom of Italy in 1861.
Gaeta street view
An urban settlement was built during the Middle Ages and the medieval area still survives today. The city has served as an ancient Ionian colony that belonged to the Samians.
Later, the port was built into a strong military base. Due to its strategic military location it was attacked and captured by many rulers. Even Napoleon ruled over Gaeta for some time.
Easter Monday is celebrated here more as a pilgrimage day than a boisterous event and hordes of pilgrims flock to the Holy Trinity Sanctuary on Monte Orlando. Feast Day of Sant’Erasmo is celebrated with fireworks.
Surfing contests are conducted at Sant’Agostino Beach and New Years Eve is celebrated with music and fireworks along the beaches.
Olives from this area are very famous and have attained world recognition. The burgundy-colored olives can be used fresh or for oil production.
Where is Gaeta?
- 52.8 miles/ 85 km from Ponza, Italy
- 66.4 miles/ 107 km from from Naples, Italy
- 88.2 miles/ 142 km from Rome, Italy
- 89.4 miles/ 144 km from Sorrento, Italy
- 209.4 miles/ 337 km from Bari, Italy
- 254.7 miles/ 410 km from Florence, Italy
- 55.9 miles/ 90 km from Naples International Airport, Italy
- 93.8 miles/ 151 km from Rome Fiumicino Airport, Italy
- 96.3 miles/ 155 km from Rome Ciampino Airport, Italy
Things to See
- Monte Orlando
- Montagna Spaccata
- The Capella d’Oro
- Old City
- The Sanctuary of SS. Trinita
- Church of San Giovanni a Mare
- The Cathedral
Main city beach
- Serapo Beach
- Sant’ Agostino Beach
- Ponza Island
- Tiberius Villa
Gaeta helps you to get a feel of the best of southern Italy, the best food, friendly people and plenty of ambiance.
Its pleasant beaches offer you joy by day, and its historic monuments offer plenty of things to see after the sun sets.
We wish you a fantastic Mediterranean cruise!