Calcata – This is where you can find a village of hippies in Italy

With the fasting month around the corner, I wondered where would be nice to do a day trip till I remembered a post that Natalie wrote not too long ago which made me interested in visiting it.

By chance, we had to go to Lido di Tarquinia which by chance wasn’t too far away from this place, to celebrate MILs birthday.

The place that we’re speaking of is Calcata! Not be confused with Calcutta, India. I was initially puzzled as to how Natalie could have gone to India and come back to Rome within a day.

Calcata is a charming village on top of a volcanic cliff. It is so picture postcard pretty. Even the rain clouds didn’t diminished how lovely the place looked.

Calcata reminds me somewhat of Nemi, but a little more rustic.

Did you know that in the 1930s the government condemned this area for fear that the volcanic cliff built by the ancient community would collapse. Local residents then were moved to the nearby area.

But in the 1960s the empty area was repopulated again with squatters such as hippies and artists many of them eventually purchased their homes and eventually the condemnation was reversed and now you get an interesting community there. A village run by hippies.

According to NYTimes, ‘Calcata may be the grooviest village in Italy. home to a wacky community of about 100 artists, bohemians, aging hippies and New Age types‘.

Reading that, I imagined that there will be people with long hair, bandanas over their heads, and long flowy outfits. You know, like this.

When we reached there, we first stopped by a little restaurant overlooking the cliff called L’Orchidea Salvaggia. The people running it are really friendly and I liked that there were grape vines all around us. The grapes should be ripe for the picking come October or so 🙂

I had a plate of yummy lasagna with zucchini flowers. It was so delicious! Despite it’s small size, it was extremely filling.

Cart had ravioli with creamy lemon. It was so good! Lemon surprisingly, really does go well with cream and pasta.

He also had fagiolini lessati afterwards. These beans, are quite special as instead of the typical green, these were yellow and are grown in the area.

I couldn’t help but to take a picture of the coffee cup we were drinking of. So cute!

After lunch, it was the perfect time to go a-strolling in through the village and burn of a bit of calories.

We turned by the corner …

Went through the entrance …

Walked up the slope …

And we reached the heart of Calcata.

The place does look quite hippy. While it wasn’t as obvious and in your face as I initially imagined, you can see how the atmosphere here is influenced. I saw a few lounging around with their pre-loved items, there were art galleries and bars.

This guy here is selling some bottles of juniper berries, salt and Olio di Iperico – that’s the red liquid there. Made of St John’s Wort, used for treating depression, he claims that it was matured for 40 days and is beneficial for skin maladies. Cart got a bottle for himself but when we tried it on ourselves, we found out that the skin gets really hot when you use it.

The seller looks really happy doesn’t he? 🙂

There were works going on when we were there which spoiled the view a little. Nevertheless, we took a peek inside the church.

This flyer right next to the entrance amused me a lot.

I then met this sweet tempered dog which I called, Giorgione on account on how it was breathing. It was such a calm and gentle animal.

I enjoyed walking in the area. While it was not a huge place, every passage that we went past looks so charming, especially with the flowers and vines growing all around. I’m also quite pleasantly surprised to see the amount of cats in the area. See if you could spot them in the two pictures below.

Here’s something which I thought was cute and coincidental about this black cat.

She was sitting right next to a bar called Black cat’s milkbar! An unofficial mascat! (A typo but I’m leaving it in)

Like Nemi, they are both on top of a volcano, but a big difference is how rustic Calcata is. I love how the place looks not too polished and yet so charming. I really hope that this place doesn’t get overrun with tourists like Rome is right now.

We probably spent about 2 hours or so before we had to leave for Lido di Tarquinia. And I really hope to visit this place again to soak up more of it’s atmosphere. I think that Calcata is a really charming place to be, be it for the buildings or the community animals or just the people there.

Bye for now dog!

Bye for now cat!

Bye for now Giorgione!

I love you! And I hope to see you soon!

4 Replies to “Calcata – This is where you can find a village of hippies in Italy”

  1. I have a picture of that same black and white kitty in front of the same red door! Really glad you were able to visit. I thought it was such a funny, funky little town. Loved how many people were just out and about in the piazza and down the side streets.

    AND.. I thought my Italian was failing me when I was told we were going to Calcata. I thought of India too!

    1. I’d really like to visit there again. I saw that there was a natural art museum along the road, which interests me. When we reached there, it was closed though. And there should be a waterfall somewhere in the area

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