Discovering Abruzzo


Top-ten-beaches-italy-01-punta-pennaAbruzzo is an Italian region located in central and eastern Italy. It is a land of sea and mountain. It lies between the highest peaks of the Apennines (It is in Abruzzo that the Apennines reach their maximum height and width; their highest point, Corno Grande, culminates at 2912 meters in the Gran Sasso massif) and the Adriatic Sea. It is a land rich in attractions; in fact, you can choose between ski slopes and beaches, natural parks and cities of art, medieval churches and monasteries, castles and museums.

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Il Lago di Scanno / SCANNO LAKE: the HEART SHAPED LAKE – Abruzzo (IT)

01_scannoSummary: Originated from an enormous landslide that fell down from Mountain Genzana, SCANNO LAKE is the most charming and the most visited lake in the entire Abruzzo. Located at a height of 922 meters above the sea level is the largest natural lake in Abruzzo.

The journey from the coastline to the Lake it’s a beautiful touristic experience itself. Getting closer to the LAKE driving through the narrow serpentine route, the road eventually opens to give you the spectacular calm and relaxing view of the HEART SHAPED LAKE.

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Summary: ROCCA CALASCIO is a MEDIEVAL CASTLE that lies within the Gran Sasso e Monti della Laga NATIONAL PARK and alongside the high plain of Campo Imperatore (also known as the LITTLE TIBET of EUROPE).

The MEDIEVAL CASTLE, also known as LADYHAWK CASTLE is located on a ridge at the height of 1,460 meters; it was used as a MILITARY observation POST in order to communicate with other towers and nearby castles to even reach the Adriatic Sea Coastline.

Today you can VISIT ROCCA CALASCIO for free and it’s definitely worth losing yourself in the MEDIEVAL ATMOSPHERES dated back to the year 1000 AD.

Near the fortress, at a slightly lower elevation, is Santa Maria della Pietà, an octagonal church built in the seventeenth century.

The whole area can be considered an amusement park in the open air for climbing enthusiasts, for those interested in walking in the endless valleys, for horseback riding, hiking in the nearby national parks (on foot or on a mountain bike), for skiing enthusiasts (thanks to its proximity to the SKI RESORTS).

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Summary: Considered to be the LITTLE TIBET of Abruzzo for the wonder that distinguishes it, CAMPO IMPERATORE is a beautifully unreal vast tableland, with glacial origins, located about 1,800 meters above sea level in the province of L’Aquila in the heart of the Gran Sasso Massif and inside the Gran Sasso e Monti della Laga National Park.

Campo Imperatore was also, along with the nearby area called Campo Felice, one of former POPE and now SAINT JOHN PAUL II’s favorite mountainous places in Abruzzo.

Home to a SKI RESORT of the same name covering a total of 15 km of ski slopes It is an area which is also a SHORT DISTANCE from the COAST; in fact if you are lucky with the weather it might happen to be able to go SKIING and go to the BEACH (SUNBATHING or SWIMMING) in the same day.

The entire valley has been often used as SET for MOVIES and COMMERCIALS (i.e. LADYHAWK starring Michelle Pfeiffer).

Not far from Campo Imperatore we can find the “ROCCA CALASCIO” Castle, also known as LADYHAWK CASTLE, a medieval castle that now you can VISIT FOR FREE.

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Summary: Abruzzo is best known as a region of national parks and as a mountainous region, especially for its peaks that are the highest in the Apennine system.

Yet Abruzzo is also a sea region, with 133 kilometers of coastline rich in extraordinary landscapes very different from each other and recalling the oceanic coasts of Scotland or Portugal. It is in this extraordinary scenery that we can find the wonderful TRABOCCO. A TRABOCCO is an ancient and typical fishing machine, which is frequently easy to spot on the Abruzzo coastline and it has become a symbol of it.

Today, after a period of lacking use TRABOCCHI (plural of Trabocco) are back in the spotlight. Many TRABOCCHI have been converted into restaurants where you can enjoy a fabulous culinary experience literally floating on the sea; starting with the appetizers generally consist of squid, octopus, shrimp, mussels, clams, then as a first course you can generally have often prepared homemade pasta with seafood. Among the main courses stand out roasts and mixed fried fish (mullet, cod, squid, scampi). But the true King of all the local cuisine is the “BRODETTO“, which is a soup of local fish cooked in an earthenware pot with plenty of extra virgin olive oil and fresh tomatoes….YOU DON’T WANT TO MISS THAT!!!

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Torre Cerrano: the Ancient Costal Tower – Abruzzo (IT)


Summary: TORRE CERRANO is one of the ANCIENT COSTAL TOWERS of the KINGDOM of NAPLES; located on the ADRIATIC COAST, between SILVI MARINA and PINETO stands out clearly on the horizon on a small hill behind the beach, surrounded by a clump of tall pine trees, in an environment of rare beauty. The small FORT derivates its name from the name of a torrent – Cerrano torrent, indeed. Cerano torrent was the ancient harbour of Atri and a port of call for many ships carrying cereals from Apulia and Sicily (even TODAY, SWIMMING in front of the tower with a simple mask, you can SEE the SUBMERGED REMAINS of the ANCIENT PORT).

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