: Southern Italy
: Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park
The Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park, the second largest Italian National Park and World Heritage site, is still maintaining unchanged the harmony between nature and thousand years of history and will enchant every visitor with its amazing landscapes.
Flora and fauna
Chilly in April.
- Agropoli is a large coastal town which offers a good base for exploring the Cilento. It has a quaint old town perched upon a promontory, with a medieval castle and picturesque port. Along its coastline 'Lungomare' there are a lot of restaurants, hotels and shops.
- Santa Maria Di Castellabate is a very popular tourist resort with a good selection of beaches, hotels and restaurants.
- Paestum is a 6th Century BCE greek town with 3 large impressive temples. The ruins are open all year round, along with a museum nearby.
- At Paestum, visit a traditional Casereccio (dairy) to buy fresh Mozzarella buffalo cheese, popularly known as Bocconcini.
- Castelcivita has some spectacular caves called 'Le Grotte Di Castelcivita'. Guided tours take around an hour and cost 10 Euro per person.
- Velia, near the coastal town of Ascea has interesting archaeological remains from the early greek settlers, and later the Romans. Admission is 3 euro per person, and takes around 3 hours to explore.
In august many Cilento villages celebrate Sagras, which are eating festivals where you can try all kinds of typical local dishes. Zeppola/Zeppule are ring doughnuts covered in sugar. Fiorilli/Sciurilli are egg and flour fried courgette flowers. Lagane e Ceci is chickpeas with long flat pasta strips. Mulugnane m'buttunate/ melanzane imbottito is eggplant stuffed with breadcrumbs and flavouring, and pan fried.
- In Agropoli, Good restaurants are 'Il Buttero' on via Pio Decimo, 'La Brace' on Via Risorgimento, and 'La Barracuda' on lungomare.
- Lacrima Cristi (the tears of Christ) from Naples, is a strong red wine.
- Paestum produces a couple of local wines.
- Grappa is a very strong clear spirit which is made locally in all the villages.
- Amaro Lucano is a local aperitif.
- Borgo Riccio, Strada Provinciale 86, n°56, tel: +39 0974 831554 [email protected] . A great bed and breakfast with private rooms in the tranquility of the Cilento and Vallo del Diano National Park. Clean, cozy and friendly. Cooking facilities, English speaking staff, library.
- Bed and breakfast Cilento. The warm family atmosphere, the small number of guests, the peacefulness of the country setting, combined with the intense scents of the sea and the countryside make “Baia di Trentova” the ideal location in which to spend your holidays throughout the year.
- Oliveta Agriturismo, http://www.agriturismooliveta.it/ Oliveta Agriturismo is a bed and breakfast located in Prignano Cilento. It offers good food, and four double bedrooms. Full and Half Board holidays may be booked. It is open all year round.
- Hotel La Playa, http://www.hotellaplayaacciaroli.it/ Based on a private beach, Hotel La Playa is a hotel situated in the small village of Acciaroli. Hotel La Playa specialises in organic Italian cuisine, growing their own ingredients at Tenuta Degli Eremi, a slice of Italian coast which is yours to visit. Full and half board holidays are available to be booked.
When hiking in the Cilento, be aware that there are some natural hazards. There are vipera (Vipers) and cinghiale (Wild Boar). Vipers are poisonous and need to be identified and avoided. They are around a foot long and grey/green in colour. Wild Boar are numerous in the Cilento, and can attack if they are with their young. Wild Boar are nocturnal, and can be seen after sundown.