Hiking in Abruzzo is natural, the territory is healthy and diverse, authentic and unspoiled. It lends itself “naturally” to the steps of the pretentious explorer eager to discover. Many are the faces of a unique region in its conformation: there where the sea ends, emerge the mountains with simplicity and without sharp contrasts.
We’ve compiled 5 great locations in close contact with nature, but also with the tradition and culture of this strip of land jutting out into the sea which is called Terre dei Trabocchi.
1. The Valley of Santo Spirito: from the gorges of San Martino to Bocca dei Valloni
The trail branches off into the Valley of Santo Spirito, in Majella National Park, in Fara San Martino. The land rises towards Monte Amaro, the highest point of the Majella range. The name is related to the presence of a small chapel on the right side of the Valley, in the vicinity of Bocca dei Valloni, consisting of a cave. Inside there is a limestone altar. The trail starts from the San Martino gorge, a narrow rock crevice. Just outside the gorge one can find the cave monastery of San Martino in Valle, dating from the 9th century. The route starts from the car park in front of the spectacular Valley of Fara San Martino. Following the signs to the Park “H1,” along the gravelly path and right after the monastery is the cliff, for rock climbing of the local CAI section. The path (circular) has a length of 3.6 kilometers, the time being about 3 hours. For info: Majella National Park Visitor Center. Tel. 0872980970.
2. Walking with Maurizio Salvatore, Tufillo
The trail dedicated to Maurizio Salvatore, a member of the Vasto Alpine Club who disappeared prematurely, develops in unique panoramic scenery. From the Trigno River valley it goes back to the beautiful village of Tufillo, concentrating on the Southeast slope of Monte Farano. The territories touched by the path are included among the rocky outcrop of Caprafica and the clay ridge of Colle Amarena; the route (circular) of 21 kilometers can be followed in about six hours starting from SS 650 Trignina, at kilometer 58,600. Here you take the Maurizio Salvatore path, indicated by appropriate signs. For info: CAI Vasto Tel. 347 4217181.
3. The ring of Sant’Angelo Cave, Palombaro
Sant’Angelo cave, a place of worship of medieval origin at the edge of the village of Palombaro, on the slopes of the Majella, stands at around 1,000 metres above sea level in a natural environment of great beauty. It’s characterized by limestone cavities carved by time. Inside you can admire the remains of an ancient church, formerly the Church of St. Michael the Archangel. The cave, located at the entrance of the narrow access path to the Palombaro Valley and Ugni Mountain, is immersed in florid and rich vegetation.
The hiking trail develops within the Majella National Park. The starting point of the route (circular) is in Località Piano Massaro. The route has a length of 3 km and it can be run in two hours. Info: the visitor’s center of the Natural Museum of Majella National Park. Tel. 0872980970.
4. Trekking in the nature reserve “Lecceta di Torino di Sangro”
It is a path that traverses the savage and spectacular coastal forest of Torino di Sangro, the “Lecceta”. The name comes from the dominant tree species, the oak. The route, technically challenging, offers to the most experienced hikers the opportunity to cross the entire reserve, visiting the main tourist-receptive structures in the area, such as the visitor center, the Wildlife Area, the Balcony of the Sun, and the Mediterranean garden. In the southern part of the trail you can encounter roe deer and listen to the characteristic sound of the colorful european bee-eater, which from May to September nests near the “Lecceta”.
The departure is expected from the reserve’s visitor center, from here you cross the picnic area in the Southwest direction, follow the “hiking trail” signs. The path (circular) is 5.3 km long, the journey time is about three hours. For info: Coop. Terracoste Tel. 333.7971892.
5. A poetic journey between nature and culture in the Valley of Taranta Peligna
It is one of the most beautiful valleys of the eastern slope in Majella National Park, the Valley of Taranta. The path is fascinating, not just for its natural elements, its origins, or the traditions of the small village of Taranta Peligna, but also because it sends the hikers back to World War II, when the partisans of the Majella Patriots Group liberated the oppressed towns overlooking the Aventino River. It also doesn’t leave out the literary flair of Gabriele D’Annunzio that concludes the tour: Here you can visit a Carsic complex at 1500 metres above sea level and the highest tourist cave in Europe, the caves of Cavallone, which inspired the scenography of the pastoral tragedy “La Figlia di Iorio”, the celebrated work of art.
The path is linear; the trail leaves from the Church of our Madonna del Carmine, a few hundred meters before entering the village of Taranta Peligna. The route has a length of 6 km and a duration of nearly five hours. For info: Raffaele Madonna (Alpine College Guides Abruzzo) Tel. 3391397870.
Within our portal dedicated to active vacation www.leterredeitrabocchi.it/outdoor, you can find all the detailed descriptions, technical data, maps and gps locations for each path.
Translated by Alan Glenn Embree
[Credits: leterredeitrabocchi.it/outdoor | Photography: Carmelita Cianci, abruzzofotografia, Marricc 80, altovastese.it]