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Path of Tratturi - Trekking & Off-roads Vehicles

Where: Italy - Molise

Duration: 6 days / 5 nights

Treatment: Half board

Participants: at least 2

Departures: from the 01/06/2021 to 26/03/2023

From 1.250,00 €

A program for true walkers to discover Molise walking, for some stretches, on the footsteps of the Regi Tratturi of transhumance. The network of Tratturi has not only allowed transhumance for thousands years, but has also fueled an intense cultural, urban and demographic movement. Along its lines, beside flocks and goods; languages, traditions and cults have spread; and together with mercantile, artisanal and industrial activities, urban centers have formed. Using the road network at the bottom of the valley, Molise can be crossed by car from one side to the other in just over an hour. Thanks to the short distances, you will visit the major centers and archaeological sites, together with your guide who will be with you for the entire duration of your itinerary, with off-road vehicles for transfers and available for trekking days.
VALIDITY: FROM 01/06/2021 TO 31/03/2022

1st day: Arrival in Termoli
Arrival in Termoli within 15.00, accommodation in hotel and relax. At 17.00 meeting with the guide at the hotel and walk inside the characteristic medieval village of Termoli, small treasure chest set against a promontory and surrounded by high and mighty medieval walls in an elliptical shape. Visit to the Cathedral of Santa Maria della Purificazione, in Romanesque-Apulian style in which are interesting the facade and the floor mosaics visible under the current level of the base. Crossing narrow and picturesque alleys, you reach the imposing Swabian Castle, a perfectly preserved testimony of the fortification system built by Emperor Frederick II of Swabia starting from the  first half of the thirteenth century. Walk in the nineteenth-century district located outside the ancient walls of the Borgo Antico whose first constructions were granted only after the year 1847 by the will of King Ferdinand II of Bourbon; panoramic photo from Piazza Sant’Antonio of the imposing wall that protects the entire ancient village of Termoli. Dinner in restaurant, presentation of the trip, free activities and overnight at the hotel.

2nd day: “Sea of Wine”
Campomarino / Tratturo l’Aquila-Foggia / San Martino in Pensilis / Larino / Termoli
Breakfast at 08:00 and short transfer to Campomarino Lido. At 08:30 start of the walk from the beach of Campomarino Lido along a couple of kilometers of shore which are considered an example of "Macchia Mediterranea". Continuation in inland direction, crossing an area between the Biferno and Fortore rivers, skirting the border with Puglia. It is the area that in ancient times experienced the development of the civilization of the Frentani (one of the main Samnite tribes) and was later an important Roman granary. It is a fertile plain where the path winds through rows of vines, olive groves, orchards and small vegetable gardens. Campomarino is considered an excellence for the production of wines. We will visit a cellar located along the way to have a small tasting. At 12:30 stop along the Tratturo l'Aquila-Foggia for a bivouac lunch with tasting of the "Pampanella" of San Martino in Pensilis, home of this delicious and spicy bite of roast pork. At 15:00 arrival in San Martino in Pensilis, whose name derives from the church around which the first inhabited nucleus was formed in medieval times. The town retains the Renaissance Baronial Palace, called "the Castle", which dominates the square with its square structure and the large “loggia” from which you can see the sea. One of the most fascinating and unique Molise traditions takes place in this town every 30th April, it is called the “carrese”, a race of chariots pulled by oxen.  In the “Carrese”, many ritual elements are linked together: the scanning of peasant time (the awakening of nature), the passage from adolescence to adulthood, the religious one that includes popular and official worship; all these are united in the presences of the ox and the relics of the saints carried in procession on the winning chariot. At 15:30 transfer to nearby Larino, the ancient capital of the Frentano people, which was presumably founded twelve centuries before Christ and subsequently, mentioned several times in the year 66 BC. by Cicero in an important prayer, and then became an important Roman municipality (Larinum). Meeting with the tour guide and visit to the Thermal Area and the Roman Amphitheater built around 80 AD; the building, although not one of the largest in the Roman world, could accommodate up to 10,000 people. Walk in the picturesque historic center of medieval imprint and visit both the prestigious Palazzo Ducale, whose original nucleus was built between 1100 and 1200 by the Normans; and the Cathedral of San Pardo, in Romanesque-Gothic style, built in 1319 and awarded in 1928 of the title of Basilica Minore. At 19:00 return to Termoli at the hotel. Fish dinner in a typical restaurant. Time for leasure.

3rd day: “Ventricina”
Guglionesi / Montenero di Bisaccia Tratturo Centurelle - Montesecco / Pietrabbondante / Campobasso
Breakfast and Check-out. At 08:00 transfer to Guglionesi for a guided tour of the village with an ancient history, where sea and hills meet together with olive trees and vines. The historic center is well preserved on the top of the hill, with the scheme in which churches and public buildings of great historical and artistic importance are located. We will visit the church of Santa Maria Maggiore, built on Romanesque structures, which inside houses superb masterpieces. At 10:00 return to the starting point of the path to move towards Montenero di Bisaccia. At 14.00 arrival at the gates of Montenero di Bisaccia near the Sanctuary of the Madonna di Bisaccia, stop along the Tratturo Centurelle-Montesecco for a bivouac lunch with tasting of Montenero di Bisaccia “ventricina”, a local salami produced using exclusively pigs reared in loco and fed mainly with cereals and dried legumes. Short visit to the Sanctuary. At 16:00 departure towards Pietrabbondante where, on the slope of Monte Saraceno, the Samnites built a majestic cult complex consisting of a theater, a temple and two buildings with arcades on either side. The works began at the end of the 2nd century BC. and ended in 95 BC. The building  was intended for both worship and institutional activities because, if religious rites were held in the great temple, the senate met in the theatre to adopt important resolutions in the interest of the State. At the end of the visit, departure to Campobasso, arrival at the hotel and accommodation in the reserved room. Dinner at the hotel and overnight.

4th day: “Sannio Pentro”
Sepino / Tratturo Pescasseroli – Candela / WWF Oasis Guardiaregia / Forra del Quirino Waterfalls and Bojano.
Breakfast in hotel. Departure around 09.00 to Sepino, the starting point of the "archaeological journey" of today. The historic center of Sepino is a small jewel of medieval architecture in which sober and elegant Renaissance buildings are inserted. We start from the central square and, after a passage through its alleys, we take the route to reach "Terravecchia", a Samnite fortress with mighty walls that had to face the assaults of the Roman troops led by the consul Papirio Cursore in 293 BC. on the occasion of the III Samnite War. Continuing the journey, further down, on a hill from which the Tratturo dominates, in a light plain hidden in the woods, we bivouac for lunch near a Samnite temple used until the Middle Ages as a church dedicated to St. Peter. After the lunch, we continue to descend until we reach the Tratturo Pescasseroli-Candela which will lead us to the entrance door of the Roman city of Altilia, last stop of the day. Before the Romans, a small but prosperous Samnite commercial center already existed in this place. With the victory of Rome over the Samnites, a thriving town was born here, Saepinum, which soon acquired importance in the Roman world thanks to the industriousness of its inhabitants and the rich families who lived there. Saepinum, defined as “the city of Tratturo”, has a rhomboid shape with four doors placed at the ends of the Decumano and the Cardo. The walls, in uncertain reticulated work, were built just before 4 AD; along their path there are 25 circular and two octagonal towers. Guided tour.
At 17:00 transfer to Guardiaregia. We are inside the WWF Oasis of Guardiaregia-Campochiaro, nature is protected and the surrounding environment is an incomparable beauty. In this perched village we take a short walk in its ancient village where it will be possible to admire, from above, the Quirino gorge with its waterfalls and the Piana di Bojano with the passage of the Tratturo Pescasseroli-Candela.
Return to Campobasso, dinner in the village and overnight at the hotel.

5th day: “Le Morge”
Pietracupa – La Morgia dei Briganti / Tratturo Celano – Foggia / Trivento
Breakfast. At 08:00 transfer to Pietracupa. This village stands out from afar because it is gathered around the Morgia that dominates it and the bell tower. Under the church there is a beautiful crypt carved into the rock. Guided tour of the small village and departure to the next Morgia: the "Morgia dei Briganti", starting point of today's trekking. A legend tells that this isolated cliff was a refuge for outlaws and rebels. "LE MORGE" are spikes of rock emerging from the ground, in this specific case they are tuffaceous stratifications of marine sedimentation dating back to the Pliocene period. In fact, the air seems impregnated with a faint smell of the sea. Since ancient times they have been used as a solid support for residential settlements and the man have adapted them carving stairs, basins, caves, ovens and much more. At 10:00 start of the Trekking. We are in the center of Molise, a portion of territory set between the Trigno and Biferno rivers that was created by the debris deposited by the Matese and Mainarde mountains. Our itinerary follows these large Morge and the valley floor of the small river Rivo, crossing and walking on the great Tratturo Celano-Foggia. Reaching the last Morgia along the river, before the path begins a short but steep climb to the village of Trivento, we stop for lunch with a bivouac at the foot of the "Pietra Fenda". Last kilometer on foot of today and we reach Trivento, located on the crest of a hill overlooking the valley of the Trigno river. The town retains numerous witnesses of its long history. Stronghold devastated several times during the Samnite wars, it was then a Roman municipality and diocese already in the fourth century. In the center stands the cathedral, founded in the early Christian era on a temple dedicated to Diana. Noteworthy is the crypt, divided into seven small naves, by columns and pillars that support small cross vaults. Free visit of the village.
At 18:00 return to the hotel for dinner and overnight.

6th day: Last trekking before goodbye
Matrice / Tratturo Cortile – Centocelle / Santa Maria della Strada
Breakfast in hotel and Check-out. At 08:30 departure towards Matrice. Far from the noise, in the open countryside, on the edge of the Tratturo Cortile-Centocelle and on a beautiful hill, stands Santa Maria della Strada, an architectural jewel of 1100. Professor Corrado Carano, an art scholar, a few years ago, speaking of the temple told as follows: "It seems that in this temple the medieval artists wanted to collect all the notes of architectural music that the Italian genius had created in Italy, in a way that with its simple beauty it could compete with all thechurches of the same style in our peninsula ". Leaving the small church of Santa Maria della Strada, we quickly reach Petrella Tifernina for the last visit of this trip around Molise: the monumental complex of San Giorgio Martire. In the center of the old part of the town stands an architectural "trittico" of considerable historical and artistic interest: three monuments set one into the other and from different eras, a Byzantine, a Lombard and a Romanesque temple.
The Temple of San Giorgio Martire is one of the most interesting achievements of Romanesque architecture in the region. Construction began in the twelfth century and slowly went on so that was completed only in the thirteenth century, for this the outside and the inside the church reveal a different artistic development. The only document relating to the dating, preserved in the building itself, is the inscription placed in the “lunette” of the main portal.
At 12:00 departure for your destination of origin, or why not extend your stay in complete relaxation in one of our Dimore Rurali or farmhouses?

2 nights in double room in a 4* Hotel in Termoli on bed and breakfast basis; 2 dinners in restaurant in Termoli; 3 nights in Campobasso in a central 4* Hotel on bed and breakfast + 2 dinners; farewell dinner in a typical restaurant in Campobasso; all transfers by off-road vehicle 9 seats for every 6 participants; environmental Hiking Guide accompanying you along the walking routes; organization of the Bivouacs/Tastings as for the program; assistance from our staff on site; medical/baggage insurance; Easyweeks Tour Operator telephone assistance 24/7

 Means of transport to reach Molise; tips to guides and drivers; meals where not indicated; what is not expressly indicated in the rates include.

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