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Vico's Lake

Excalibur, the sword in the stone, appears several times in Italian history: in the San Galgano's story , in the act of giving up the life as knight for the hermit, made by sticking the sword into a rock.

Servius Mario Onorato in his great commentary to the Aeneid of Virgil points out that Hercules, wanting to demonstrate his value and physical strength, stuck a sword in the ground, by challenging the other place's inhabitants to remove it, but none succeeded. Only Hercules was capable. From the hole produced came out a huge water mass that formed the Cimino lake , now known as Lake Vico or Ronciglione's lake.

Lake Vico is among the major Italian lakes, the highest above sea level. Surrounded by the Monti Cimini's mountainous complex and in particular by the Monte Fogliano and Dal Monte Venere, it is the testimony of a long volcanic activity that shaped the surrounding territory down to the Tiber.
At the end of this phase, the underground springs and heavy rains formed the lake, Monte Venere became an island embraced by its waters, valleys and surrounding ridges were covered with dense forests . The area remained undiscovered for millennia, until the Romans conquered the Sutri's city and pursued the Etruscans fled in Cimina Forest, considered until then inhabited by demons.


Titus Livy describes it thus: "It was at that time the most impractical and frightening jungle (send atque horrible) than they are today the forests of Germany and until then there was no one penetrated, neither merchants, neither anyone dared enter" .
Later, the Romans traced the Via Cassia's route which still spans these territories.
The geological transformations' physiognomy due to volcanic activity are still visible in the ridges and crater basins that surround the lake. The valley flat area is very fertile, especially devoted to the core cultivation , and has emerged as the lake's lowering result through an external emissary excavated by the Etruscans and later expanded with the filled Farnesiane, which take their name by the Caprarola's and Ronciglione's lords.


After the Vico Lake's Natural Reserve's establishment , in 1982, occurred landscape constraints that have stolen the land in a wild overbuilding. Thanks to its unique characteristics and biotypes present, it is considered one of the most valuable Lazio's natural areas and with a relevant national interest.
Throughout the year, the lake offers a unique environment that change the seasons rhytm and thanks to the abundance of different natural environments, such as the reeds that runs along much of the shore, marsh, one of the largest of Lazio, or the beech forest Mount Venus, which occasionally opens its gaze on breathtaking scenery. Particularly interesting is the path set for the visually impaired, but suitable for everyone.