May 28, 2018
The small medieval burg of Blera lies to the south of Vetralla, set among the rolling plains that characterize coastal Lazio. Its origins date back to Etruscan times, a substantial archaeological site apparently being located somewhere in its vicinity.
In Roman times, the town was located on the Via Clodia, and by the Middle Ages, warranted the usual football game between the local de Vico family, the papacy, and the Swabians. Adding to the excitement, two early popes apparently originate from the town.
Viterbo is one of the great cities of central Italy, rich in medieval history, as it played a pivotal role in the ongoing conflict between papacy and the Swabian invaders. The dense passages of the town are flanked by stern palazzi dating back centuries, and culminate upon the soaring papal palace that looks out over the valley below.