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A chest of emotions

Welcome to the Mountain of the Sun, a karst and varied land, eternally embedded between sea and mountains, mysterious. The Gargano area is such a unique land, so naturally, historically and archaeologically varied to be considered worthy of recognition and protection. In this context it’s impossible not to mention the Gargano National Park, which includes the municipalities of Apricena, Cagnano Varano, Carpino, Ischitella, the Isole Tremiti, Lesina, Manfredonia, Mattinata, Monte Sant’Angelo, Peschici, Rignano Garganico, Rodi Garganico, San Giovanni Rotondo, San Marco in Lamis, Sannicandro Garganico, Serracapriola, Vico del Gargano and Vieste.
Each of these towns holds a secret, composing a wonderful combination of nature, history, traditions, customs and habits, feelings and emotions.
The most important and well-known tourist centres, and not surprisingly those with the largest number of hotels in the Gargano area, are Vieste, Peschici and Rodi Garganico, on the northern coast, and Vico del Gargano, inland.

Rodi Garganico

Rodi Garganico, nicknamed the Garden of the Gargano area for its vast and pristine citrus gardens, is an ancient town of fishermen, farmers and traders. It’s characterized by a well-maintained old quarter, the narrow alleys and terraces overlooking the sea, the modern marina, from where in summer the ferry departs to the Isole Tremiti, for its long golden sandy beaches. It’s also renowned for its oranges and lemons cultivations. We have dedicated to our beloved town a whole page that describes the history and traditions, places to visit, local events of our romantic village.

Vieste, Peschici and Vico del Gargano

Vieste is the biggest town of the Gargano area; it’s plenty of hotels and accommodations that allow to accommodate the many summer tourists attracted by the crystalline sea and the natural wonders of the Gargano area; despite the prevalence of tourism activities carried out by the population, Vieste is an ancient fishing and farming village. It has a picturesque medieval hamlet with narrow alleys and white houses, connected by very suggestive buttress arches. It’s dominated by a castle built by Frederick II in 1240, from which you can enjoy a wonderful view of the sea. Near the cathedral there is the “chianca amara” (literally it means bitter stone), a remarkable example of Apulian architecture of the 11th century, where the pirate Draguth Rais beheaded 5000 Vieste’s citizens during his invasion. The long white sandy beach of Vieste is dominated by the very famous Pizzomunno, an impressive vertical rock embedded in the sand. Among the events that you can’t forget, there is certainly the feast of St. George, April 23, the day on which there is a religious procession, the horse race on the beach, fireworks and beautiful concerts. From Vieste, long beaches alternate with beautiful cliffs, secluded bays, trebuchets and watchtowers, enchanting caves and delightful coves.

 An equally characteristic village is Peschici, which was founded on a rocky promontory overlooking the sea. From its position, Peschici overlooks the coast from Rodi Garganico to Vieste, while towards the horizon it can see the natural paradise of the Isole Tremiti. Its old town is typical for the numerous alleys and white houses, clear Mediterranean style, partially carved in the rock and today they are enriched with the typical blue doors; in the historic centre there are suggestive workshops, all kinds of shops and a host of clubs, taverns, inns and restaurants where you can taste the typical dishes of the Apulian tradition. Even in Peschici, at the end of the cliff, a small medieval castle stands, which had its heyday under Frederick II, who built the tower, called “Rocca Imperiale”.

Vico del Gargano, one of the 100 most beautiful villages in Italy, is located inland, on a hill between sea and forest. The name derives from the Latin vicus, village. City of ancient origins, Vico del Gargano holds in its territory precious archaeological testimonies, such as the Necropolis of Monte Pucci, located in Calenella, a popular destination for trekkers who come to the Gargano area from all over Italy and lovers of archaeology and history.
In the Dark Ages it suffered numerous raids and looting until it became a village. It was the great Emperor Frederick II of Sweden who foster its rebirth. Evidence of this period is the characteristic old town, with its towers and its medieval castle: a place that is definitely worth a visit. Vico del Gargano is also known as the land of the lovers; In fact, on February 14 there is the Feast of St. Valentine; it’s a special day on which the saint is carried in procession during the day by the numerous religious brotherhoods and the entire population. A must, in the day of love, is a stop at the Vicolo del Bacio, in the historic centre… The village lies near the famous Foresta Umbra, equipped with picnic areas and nature trails that put tourist closer to special flora and fauna of the area. In particular, the Natural Reserve of the Gargano National Park has an artificial lake inhabited by ducks and carps and has play areas for the little ones, as well as fenced areas for deer and podoliche cows.

Natural resources of the Gargano National Park

The Gargano area is not only characterized by its history and its sea. This mountainous promontory of limestone is a little microcosm that encloses fantastic ecosystems and wonderful views: on this small part of Italian territory there are more than 2,200 plant species, or about 35% of the national flora, and there are 170 species of birds out of the 237 nesting in Italy.

In some periods of the year, along the wetland of the Lake Salso, in Manfredonia, you can practice birdwatching, observing the beautiful choreography made by migratory birds that leave and arrive from Europe.

In addition to the various species of birds there are many mammals including Italic roe deer, wild boar, deer, stone martens, wild cats, hares, hedgehogs, moles, badgers, foxes and dormice.

Still, the charming Gargano coast, 150 km long, with its rocky caves, coves, backdrops, bays and beaches lapped by clear blue sea, is the perfect place for an exciting journey to the scenarios of nature: not surprisingly, the Gargano area is one of the top destinations for motorcyclists and cyclists. The promontory of the National Park and the Foresta Umbra, however, are some of the favourite destinations for trekking lovers.

The Foresta Umbra covers the promontory with huge beech trees and shady pines, with fragrant orange groves of the gardens of Rodi, the soft banks and high rocks immersed in the Adriatic. Finally, on the marina coast at the edge of the Gargano area there are Lesina and Varano lakes, full of vegetable gardens and gardens.

In spring and summer tourists from around the world come to visit the wonderful Sea Park of the Isole Tremiti, where it is also possible to delight exciting dives, thanks to the beautiful backdrops, the bays, the fishes, the corals that crowd one of the main environments more characteristic of the Mediterranean.

The picture is completed by the many typical products that you can find on the tables of the Gargano, from the excellent olive oil and the Carpino beans to the Monte Sant’Angelo bread, from Rodi and Vico del Gargano citrus to the typical caciocavallo that it’s obtained from the podolica cow’s milk of the Gargano.

The religious tradition

Eventually, a tourist attraction is definitely up made of the religious sentiment which is typical of the spirit and character of the inhabitants. In Monte Sant’Angelo there is the Basilica of St. Michael the Archangel, which is since the Middle Ages an important pilgrimage site, while the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie in San Giovanni Rotondo, where there are the remains of St. Pio from Pietrelcina, is visited by thousands of pilgrims every year.

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  Via C. Grossi 23 | 71012 Rodi Garganico FG - Italia

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