As you drive on the A1 out of Rome (and especially when returning to the city, there is a hugely impressive mountain to the west of the motorway. It rises up, floating on the plain and dominating the landscape. This is Mount Soratte, which Wikipedia tells me is an isolated limestone ridge, about 5.5 km long and boasting six separate peaks. It has been a draw for artists ever since Camille Corot changed landscape painting with his dazzling portraits of the mountain.

Mont Soracte by Camille Corot ~1826–1827

We had an appointment to meet friends for lunch nearby, but driving for an hour, eating for three and then driving home holds little appeal, so we decided to visit Sant’Oreste, the village perched on one of the peaks. The plan was to maybe walk in the national park to the highest peak, but the village was so interesting we never managed that. Another time.

Something prompted me to take the good camera; I’m glad I did.

A view down onto the carpark with the landscape stretching away below
I for one am glad there was a car park

It is hard to convey how sheer the slopes are in some places.

Steep, or what?

Many churches, this the most impressive.

Church of San Lorenzo Martire
San Lorenzo Martire

Wherever you look, views, views and more views.

View of distant hills seen between two houses
View of distant hills behind just emerging red leaves
A peak and the town behind more young figs than you can imagine
Note to self: return in summer?

Huge variety in the details of the houses, which would repay closer study, but lunch was calling.

A couple of closed doors
A couple of shuttered windows

Next time, the park, because we spotted a fine restaurant which looks like it deserves a good walk first.

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