Pescara, Italy sits on the rugged Adriatic coast, just a couple of hours away from Italy’s capital Rome is Abruzzo.
The region of Abruzzo is a destination that was not on my travel radar. It is one of the “un-explored” destinations in Italy.
It seems like we are missing some of the best destinations in Italy has to offer. The region of Abruzzo is home to some of the best-kept secrets of Italy minus the myriad of tourists.
There are various tourist attractions in Abruzzo for the active and adventurous as well as for the history and nature enthusiasts.
I recently went to Abruzzo to experience the region and its glorious beauty. I was not disappointed!
The region has a lot to offer to visitors including their food, wine, natural reserves, historical medieval castles and churches, seaside and mountain landscapes. There is surely something for everyone.
Let me share with you some good reasons why you should include Abruzzo on your next visit to Italy. Here are some of the things to do and points of interest within the region.
Delectable Food and Wine
No one else has culinary passionates like the Italians. They really know how to pull off delicious cuisine and wholesome goodness too!
On my recent visit to Abruzzo (for the Annual Mediterranean Tourism Event organised by the Chamber of Commerce of Pescara), our group were fed with some of the most delicious Mediterranean food in the region on our first evening in Pescara.
Abruzzo is also the home of the world’s famous pasta brands like Delverde and De Cecco. Located at the foot of Majella at Fara San Martino in the province of Chieti, Abruzzo.
We had the opportunity to see how Delverde makes their world class pasta. It was my first time to visit a pasta factory! It was great to have learned the delicate and meticulous process that goes into making pasta.
Here are some of Delverde’s world-class pasta: DELVERDE Lasagne Ondine Spinach, Delverde Spaghetti Nest Long Pasta, Delverde Organic Whole-Wheat Tagliatelle Nest Long Pasta, and Delverde Whole Wheat Organic Penne Rigate Pasta.
Another world class pasta brand based in the town of Moscufo, Abruzzo is the artisan pasta maker Rustichella d’ Abruzzo.
Here are some of the world-class pasta made by Rustichella D’ Abruzzo: Rustichella Bucatini Pasta, Rustichella d’Abruzzo Fettuccine Pasta, Rustichella Sugo Alla Napoletana Pasta Sauce, Rustichella Conchiglioni Pasta and Rustichella d’Abruzzo Fusilli Rustichella.
From Pescara, along the coastline of the Adriatic sea, you will see the Abruzzo’s traditional trabocchi dotted along the Adriatic coast.
Trabocchi or Trabocco is the traditional fishing huts in Abruzzo. These Trabocco were the fishing machines of Abruzzese since the 15th or 16th century.
This is one of the highlights of things to do in Pescara and taste the flavours of the sea. On our visit to Pescara, we had a sumptuous meal at Valle Grotte one of the well-known Trabocco in the region.
Since Abruzzo has vast meadows there are many sheep and lamb is one of the favourite meats in the region. Abruzzo is also known for their strong sheep cheese.
Arrosticini is the local favourite snack. It is made from lamb meat on a skewer and char-grilled.
And of course, wine…
Abruzzo is known for the famous Montepulciano d’ Abruzzo wine, one of the main exports of the region. I personally love the taste of the Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo wine and Trebbiano D’ Abruzzo wine that are the locally produced wine of the region.
Abruzzo is the proud home of the Golden Triangle of the Olive oil industry in Italy.
The Abruzzo’s towns that comprise the golden triangle are Moscufo, Loreto Aprutino and Pianella, the City of Oil.
The Olive oil produced in this region has earned the Protected Designation of Origin (PDO-DOP) title of excellence in their products in accordance with EU laws.
On our visit to Pianella, we had the opportunity to visit the old Olive oil mill. We were welcomed by the key people of Pianella whom cheerfully explained to us the heritage and process on how they traditionally make their DOP olive oil.
Pristine Nature Reserves and endless landscapes
Abruzzo is known as the “Greenest Region in Europe” for a very good reason.
The region is the home of three national parks ( Abruzzo National Park, Gran Sasso-Laga Mountains and Majella National Park and the Sirente-Velino Regional Park) and as well as 30 Nature reserves and oases.
30% of Abruzzo’s region is under natural protection and preservation.
The vast mountainous landscape of Abruzzo is the gateway to the Apennine mountains where the Gran Sasso d’ Italia is located, the highest mountain in the Apennine mountain region.
With Abruzzo’s lush region a myriad of flora and fauna can be found in the national parks and nature reserves.
There are a few endemic florae that can only be found in Abruzzo like Majella’s bindweed and the lady’s slipper orchids.
As for the fauna, Abruzzo is the home of the Abruzzo chamois, the Apennine wolf and the Marsica brown bear.
The national parks and nature reserves are open to the public, please be reminded to be responsible tourists when you visit these places as part of the sustainable tourism efforts of the region.
During winter time, Abruzzo is also a great ski destination in Italy.
Perched at the coast of the Adriatic sea, Abruzzo also offers a great seaside destination for those holidaymakers who love the sea.
On our visit to Abruzzo, we stayed in the region’s capital, Pescara.
Pescara is a seaside city that is a thriving holiday destination with good road access to and from Rome, a train station and an airport.
The city has an inviting and safe vibe that will make you feel at ease.
Just a stone throw away from our Best Western Hotel Pescara is the city’s esplanade where you can rent a sun lounger or enjoy other beach activities under the sun.
If you are into sailing, Pescara also has a good size marina where you can moor your sailboat to enjoy the city.
Of course, you should not miss the dining experience in a Trabocco. It’s one of the highlights of your visit to Abruzzo.
Medieval castles and churches
Abruzzo’s rich history can be seen through the countless castles and fortifications that was built as a line of defence from the medieval invaders and plunderers.
Each Abruzzese towns has a castle that overlooks the valleys in all directions. It’s like walking back in time as you walk the cobbled streets and alleys in this Italian region.
On our visit to Abruzzo, we went to see the beautiful medieval castle of Roccascalegna.
Countless numbers of medieval churches can also be found in each town of Abruzzo.
With the widespread of Christianity religion in Italy, it is a stronghold where the whole community congregates weekly and especially during a patron’s feast day.
The churches in the region are in baroque, Romanesque and rococo.
Beautiful villages in Abruzzo
Abruzzo is comprised of four main regions namely L’Aquila, Chieti, Pescara and Teramo.
Since Abruzzo is considered as the last frontier of Italy, most of the villages in this region still have the authentic charming medieval towns.
People from different parts of the world pick Abruzzo as the location to purchase their holiday or retirement home. Clearly, Abruzzo is one of the best places to live in Italy.
You get the best of everything in Abruzzo due to its location and rich natural resources.
On our visit to the region, we visited some of the most beautiful villages in Abruzzo like Roccascalegna, Spoltore and Loreto Aprutino.
These are just a few of the reasons why you should include Abruzzo in your itinerary to Italy.
The region has plenty to offer for everyone who loves to be with nature and enjoy its beauty.
Moreover, it has amazing gastronomical treats and wine and welcoming people.
Have you been to Abruzzo?
If you would require a visa to visit Italy you may want to read my Schengen visa guide.
Share us some details of your trip.
Special thanks to the Chamber of Commerce of Pescara for inviting me to join the Arte and Gusto trip to experience the beauty of Abruzzo region.