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Gemelli Mountains, the Park Eastern Outpost
Between Campli and Civitella del Tronto
- Involved Municipalities: Campli
From Teramo, following a short stretch of Piceno-Aprutina road leading to Ascoli Piceno, you will reach Campli, an enchanting art town rich in historical-architectural monuments, most of which date back to the 14th century. Not to be missed the wonderful Church of St Mary in Platea, with its 13th century frescoes preserved in the crypt and the precious furnishing of later epochs, as well as the so-called "Scala Santa" (sacred stairs), an important place of worship dating back to 1776. The former Monastery of St. Francis houses the National Archaeological Museum, preserving finds coming from the nearby Italic Necropolis of Campovalano (11th-2nd century BC).
From the nearby country hamlets of Roiano and Battaglia, a short tour on foot, on horseback, or by mountain bike will led you to the isolated Valle di Fosso Grande, and in particular to Grotta S. Eremo, an important site for the presence of an ancient settlement and monks since the Early Middle Ages. In this area, it is possible to carry out climbing activities along the mountaineering trails of the western slope of Mt. Foltrone (1,718m), the main summit of Montagna di Campli, but also spectacular flights by hang glider.
Once you reach Campovalano, where near the archaeological area you will find the beautiful Church of St Peter (8th century), another short detour will lead us to Guazzano, another important departure point for climbing activities leading to Foltrone, covered with wonderful ilex and beech tree woodlands.
Going ahead along the road leading to Ascoli Piceno, offering panoramic settings of great charm, you will reach the wonderful late-Renaissance village of Civitella del Tronto, set on the slope of a hill called dalla Fortezza: the hill was named after an impregnable fortress built in the 16th century on a pre-existing fortification already mentioned in the 12th century. Visiting the ancient village is exciting: following a thick network of narrow roads and lanes climbing towards the upper part of the settlement, you will reach the imposing Fortress, open all year round. The travertine walls under the fort house an equipped practice wall for sports climbing.
You will move then to Ripe di Civitella where, at the Church of St Peter, since the Early Middle Ages there was a Monastery depending on the nearby Abbey of St Mary of Montesanto. Ripe is the departure point for naturalistic tours leading to Mt. Girella (1,814), the highest summit of Montagna dei Fiori, and across the enchanting and fascinating Salinello Gorges, an incredible combination of history and nature for the presence of several Benedictine hermitages set in caves inhabited by man since the Paleolithic Age, like Grotta S. Angelo. These caves are also particularly interesting for speleological activities.
To visit the hermitages and Salinello Gorges: Museo della Grotta di S. Angelo - Contact: Associazione Verde Laga - For info and bookings for the visit to the museum: Tel. +39 0861 918376 (Museum)
Historical Museum of the Ancient Weapons - Fortezza di Civitella - Tel. +39 0861 91588 - +39 333 9030360 - firstname.lastname@example.org - www.fortezzacivitella.it
National Archaeological Museum - Campli - Tel. +39 0861 569158
(photo by M. Anselmi)
(photo by Archivio Ente Parco)
(photo by Archivio Ente Parco)