OUT OF TOWN

Un­con­tam­i­nated scenery, crys­tal- clear wa­ters, me­dieval towns perched on hills: the land­scape of the Ci­lento will lit­er­ally take your breath away each time that you visit it

Where Naples Coast & Islands - - Contents -

Un­miss­able out- of- town sights: Ci­lento

Un­con­tam­i­nated scenery, crys­tal- clear wa­ters, me­dieval towns perched on hills: the land­scape of the Ci­lento, lo­cated in the south­ern part of Cam­pa­nia, in the province of Salerno, is so var­ied that it will lit­er­ally take your breath away each time that you visit it. Soft, rolling hills cov­ered with olive groves are re­flected in the blue wa­ters of the Tyrrhe­nian sea while other el­e­ments of its nat­u­ral beauty in­clude an abun­dance of tor­rents, ch­est­nut woods and larch trees. In fact, the mag­nif­i­cent land­scape of Ci­lento is only in­ter­rupted by towns perched on its cliffs or si­t­u­ated on the shores of its sea. The area is home to the mag­nif­i­cent Ci­lento Na­tional Park and the Val­ley of Diano, with the ar­chae­o­log­i­cal sites of Paes­tum and Velia and the Char­ter­house of Padula, as­signed World Her­itage sta­tus by Unesco in 1988.

In 2015, the Ci­lento coast re­ceived 15 “Blue Flags” from Fee ( Foun­da­tion for En­vi­ron­men­tal Ed­u­ca­tion), which, since 1981 has given awards to the most en­vi­ron­men­tally aware sea­side re­sorts: Agropoli ( Tren­tova and San Marco), Castella­bate, Mon­tecorice ( Agnone, Capitello and San Ni­cola a Mare) Pol­lica ( Ac­cia­roli and Pioppi), Casal Velino, Ascea, Pis­ciotta, Cen­tola- Pal­in­uro, Vi­bon­ati and Sapri. But not only, the ports of Ci­lento, in­clud­ing Ma­rina D’Arechi in Salerno, the tourist port of Agropoli, the Ma­rina of Casal Velino, that of Ac­cia­roli, the Ma­rina of Camerota and the tourist port of Pal­in­uro also re­ceived awards from Fee. Among other things, thanks to its un­pol­luted beaches and the qual­ity of its sea, Ci­lento has now been as­signed Unesco World Her­itage site sta­tus.

PAL­IN­URO

Is the most fa­mous, A- lis­ter re­sort in Ci­lento. A highly sought- af­ter des­ti­na­tion on ac­count of its crys­talline wa­ters, its lo­cal tra­di­tions and the trendy dis­cothe­ques that make for a truly ‘ viby’ nightlife scene. One of its most pop­u­lar beaches is “Min­gardo” ( also known as the “Arco Nat­u­rale”, due to its rocky arch- like for­ma­tion ), ly­ing near the Gulf of Poli­cas­tro. We sug­gest that you hire a ped­alò to reach one of its many corners of par­adise, only ac­ces­si­ble by sea, in­clud­ing its renowned “Buon dormire” beach, boast­ing an un­usual va­ri­ety of sand

that paints the sea with sug­ges­tive colours. Pal­in­uro is also fa­mous for its nu­mer­ous sea caves and un­der­wa­ter grot­toes, in­clud­ing the “Blue Grotto” - an ideal des­ti­na­tion for scuba div­ing! Pal­in­uro also hosts myr­iad restau­rants where you can sam­ple the area’s typ­i­cal fresh fish- based spe­cial­ties in­clud­ing, first and fore­most, its fa­mous blue lob­ster.

PAES­TUM

Is the ideal sport for those in search of a hol­i­day com­bin­ing en­ter­tain­ment and cul­ture. It has a sandy beach­ing stretch­ing over 12 km and is sur­rounded by a green pine for­est where you can take much- needed shel­ter from the heat dur­ing the hottest hours of the day. Just a short dis­tance from the beach, its ma­jes­tic, beau­ti­fully pre­served tem­ples are sil­hou­et­ted against the sky. Its ar­chae­o­log­i­cal site, awarded Unesco World Her­itage sta­tus in 1988, is bounded by a wall that is still prac­ti­cally in­tact. A gen­uinely fas­ci­nat­ing small town and one that is well worth a visit ly­ing in the mid­dle of Piana del Sele, a vast plain south of Salerno where the buf­fa­los that pro­duce the re­gion’s de­li­cious moz­zarella graze.

AGROPOLI

Lo­cated at the south­ern­most ex­trem­ity of the Gulf of Salerno, boasts a stretch of coast­land ex­tend­ing over ap­prox­i­mately 3km and is rec­og­nized as a site of com­mu­nity in­ter­est ( S. C. I.). Its at­trac­tions in­clude the “Tren­tova Rock”, con­nected to the main­land by a nar­row strip of land that can only be crossed on foot, which also gives its name to the epony­mous bay, the “Scoglio di San Francesco” and a se­ries of small in­lets that fol­low one upon the other right up to the small beach of Val­lone ( Castella­bate), lo­cated just a short dis­tance from Punta Tresino. Make sure to visit its his­toric cen­tre, perched on a rock and lit­er­ally brim­ming over with a num­ber of small, charm­ing restau­rants.

CASTELLA­BATE

A de­light­ful me­dieval ham­let, it is con­sid­ered one of Italy’s most beau­ti­ful towns. Perched nearly 300m above sea level, Castella­bate is ex­tremely at­mo­spheric with its maze of dark al­ley­ways wind­ing among noble palazzi and old stone dwellings. Its sea­side area is Santa Maria di Castella­bate. The coast is sprin­kled with steep cliffs, bays, nat­u­ral coves and golden beaches of the likes of “Pozzillo”, “Ma­rina Pic­cola”, “Punta dell’Inferno”, “Baia Arena”, “Punta di Oglias­tro” and “Lago”. It also boasts count­less small nat­u­ral in­lets - found, above all, in the area of Oglias­tro Ma­rina, Li­cosa and Tresino – and sea grot­toes.

POL­LICA

Is an agri­cul­tural cen­tre si­t­u­ated on the south­ern slopes of Monte Stella , at the foot of a hill: along its coast, you can find the tourist re­sorts of Ac­cia­roli and Pioppi. Ac­cia­roli is not only a small gem but also a favourite shop­ping des­ti­na­tion fea­tur­ing a clus­ter of charm­ing bou­tiques and count­less open- air bars. Pol­lica stole the show, for the sum­mer of 2015, as one of the best coastal re­sorts in Italy, ranked first in Cam­pa­nia and third in Italy by this year’s edi­tion of Legam­bi­ente’s Blue Guide and the Ital­ian Tour­ing Club.

Pal­in­uro

Ac­cia­roli

Agropoli

Tem­pio di Net­tuno, Paes­tum

Santa Maria di Castella­bate

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