L'Aquila is the capital city of both L'Aquila province and the region of Abruzzo. This city of 100,000 inhabitants is located in a hill and around it are the Apennine Mountains. The snow capped mountains of Gran Sasso d'Italia is towering over the north east side of the city. The city is also home to the L'Aquila University.
The city itself is located at an elevation of 721 meters and it is surrounded by four mountain peaks that are over 2000 meters in height. Since the warm air that comes from the Mediterranean is blocked by the surrounding mountains the city has a comparatively cold climate. L'Aquila is located 100 kilometers away from Rome towards the north east of the country.
Construction of this city has been started by the Roman Emperor Fredrick II and it was completed by his son in 1254 AD. The wall that surrounds the city was completed in 1316. Many earthquakes have rocked the city and caused devastation many times. Since the city is located on an ancient lake bed, the seismic activity gets accelerated.
The city of L'Aquila is a popular resort for skiing and hiking around the surrounding mountains but it has not got affected by foreign tourism yet. There is a massive Spanish fort built by Don Pedro de Toledo the Spanish Viceroy stands in the highest area of the city. It houses the National Museum of Abruzzo at present. There is the cathedral of San Massimo which was built in 13th century but was destroyed several times due to earthquakes and rebuilt.
In the area surrounding the town there are many castles and monasteries. One of the notable structures is the fountain with ninety nine sprouts built in 1272. The history of this fountain is unknown. Luminous fountain in which there is a sculptor of two women holding two large jars is another interesting construction to watch.