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Stone settlement of San Rocco

Archaeological sites

A route through Etruscan history and a view of the town of Sorano

The rocky settlement of San Rocco sits in the middle of the green countryside on the enormous, panoramic terrace that dominates the medieval town of Sorano and the valley of the river Lente.

Along the edges of the terrace there are numerous chambers dug into the rock: some, particularly those to the south-west, were used as burial places during the Etruscan period; others date back to the Middle Ages, and had an almost entirely domestic function.

Small Church of San Rocco in Sorano
Small Church of San Rocco in Sorano

At the entrance to the settlement we find the church dedicated to Saint Roch, which inside houses an altar with frescoes from the end of the 17th century, representing the Madonna and Child.

From the high point of the terrace you can admire the medieval town of Sorano, the enormous spurs of volcanic rock that encircle it and the deep valleys that follow the River Lente. The landscape is truly enchanting. Particularly fascinating are the niches that originally housed sacred images (the so-called 'devil-scarers'), which had the purpose of protecting travellers on the road.

Via Cava di San Rocco in Sorano
Via Cava di San Rocco in Sorano

Thanks to a path, we arrive at the Via Cava di San Rocco. Probably Etruscan in origin, this road, dug out of the volcanic spur, offers some jaw-dropping sights. The walls of the cave, made by human hands and atmospheric agents, are covered with mosses and lichens.