THE IN­SID­ERS ABRUZZO, ITALY

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Travel & Indulgence - LU­CIANA MASCI

SEE: San Martino Gorge, Ma­jella Na­tional Park, Chi­eti, Pescara and L’Aquila prov­inces Walk the mag­nif­i­cent lime­stone gorge and see the ru­ined 10th-cen­tury Bene­dic­tine abbey of San Martino in Valle. Also in Ma­jella Na­tional Park, climb to sum­mer pas­tures fre­quented by shep­herds for more than 3000 years. Fara San Martino at the exit of Santo Spir­ito val­ley is con­sid­ered Italy’s home of pasta; par­co­ma­jella.it; comune.farasan­martino.ch.it.

STAY: La Grande Quer­cia B&B, Ter­amo A de­light­ful prop­erty run by Sergio and Russ with great Abruzzese hos­pi­tal­ity at the foot of the ma­jes­tic Gran Sasso moun­tains in Ter­amo prov­ince; la­grand­e­quer­cia-abruzzo.com.

DINE: Ris­torante Cal­dora Punta Val­levo, mu­nic­i­pal­ity of Rocca San Gio­vanni, Chi­eti prov­ince Dine here for the best seafood on the Adri­atic coast of Italy. Spoil your­self with a five-course de­gus­ta­tion lunch; pun­taval­le­vo­cal­dora.it.

SNACK: Pescara food mar­ket, Pi­azza Largo La­porta, Via di Porta, Pescara Try deboned roast suck­ling pig sea­soned with gar­lic, rose­mary and pep­per and slow-cooked; scoff on a bread roll with crack­ling.

SHOP: Eu­ge­nio di Rienzo, Scanno, L’Aquila prov­ince This 13th-gen­er­a­tion gold­smith and fine ar­ti­san crafts stun­ning pieces of tra­di­tional jew­ellery in gold and sil­ver fil­i­gree. His pen­dants, ear­rings and bracelets are works of art; eu­ge­niodirienzo.it.

IN­DULGE: Copa De Dora Ge­la­te­ria, Via Nazionale Adri­at­ica 10, San Vito Chi­etino, Chi­eti prov­ince This has to be the best ar­ti­san gelato in all of Abruzzo; I rec­om­mend the pis­ta­chio and tiramisu flavours.

BAR­GAIN: Ca­soli mar­ket, Chi­eti prov­ince Pick up a bar­gain at these weekly out­door mar­kets in a pretty hill­top vil­lage in­land from Pescara. Look for pro­duce such as fresh sea­sonal cher­ries plus tra­di­tional linen cloth and hand­crafted wooden spaghetti frames; comune.ca­soli.ch.it.

AVOID: Pace your­self and be­ware of over-in­dul­gence as Abruzzo is a gourmet paradise, with the best ex­tra vir­gin olive oils, wines, saf­fron and truf­fles (from S.Z. Tartufi of Atessa, Chi­eti prov­ince); sz­tartufi.com.

ab­so­lutelyabruzzo.com

AB­SO­LUTELY ABRUZZO TOURS

Si­mon­etti, Castelli, Ter­amo prov­ince This com­pany has been mak­ing tra­di­tional ma­jolica ce­ram­ics since the 14th cen­tury. Its hand-painted and fired pieces make per­fect presents or me­men­tos from Abruzzo; ce­ramich­es­i­mon­etti.it.

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