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From flower to flower in the Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga Park


22 maggio 2023

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4 min

  • Comuni d’Abruzzo
  • Mountain resorts
Barisciano, ph Flodur63, CC BY-SA 4.0


Descrizione lunga

An ideal place for you, lovers of nature and mountain-biking, trekking, hiking, as well as art and good food, is Barisciano, 940 metres above sea level, one of the most enjoyable towns in the Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga Park 19 kilometres from L'Aquila.
You are in the heart of valleys and hills, with the Fajèta Mountain (Faiete Peak, 1915 meters high) dividing the town from Campo Imperatore Plateau.

You see it springing up before your eyes from the slopes of a tree-lined hill on top of which still stand the ruins of the medieval castle, erected in the 11th century in a strategic position to protect the village below.
Rising between the 6th and 8th centuries, the center offers you pages and pages of its history with its squares and monuments, both civil and religious, many awaiting restoration after the 2009 earthquake (such as the  Church of St. Flaviano, the Church of the Holy Trinity and the Sanctuary of Madonna di Valleverde).
On your walk through the narrow streets, observe the doors and windows of the small houses with elegant carved stone jambs and round arches, arriving at the Fonte Grande, an ancient artifact dear to the community. After a recent restoration it has returned to its former glory with its five central spouts with which the population quenched their thirst, two side fountains for watering animals, and two wash houses where women used to go to wash their clothes. 

Reach the main square and its monumental fountain with a boulder in the centre depicting the 4 districts of Barisciano and a mural depicting an Abruzzo landscape.
Dedicate yourself at this point to visiting - by appointment - the Flower Museum and the Apennine Floristic Centre, which are in a room of the St. Columba Convent (converted into a historic home). The museum tour illustrates with simplicity and rigor -thanks to the use of images, films, animations and the plant source material on display - the richness and diversity of the plants that grow in the Park's territory, the factors and causes behind it, and the importance of conserving and safeguarding the immense biological heritage of this corner of the planet.

Also visit the botanical garden and large herbarium at the flower centre, and don't forget to wander into the ancient friars' forest that surrounds the convent, one of the best-preserved examples of oak forest in central Italy.
So strap on your mountain-bike and choose one of the many routes, which the area offers, such as the one that takes you in 23 kilometres to the archaeological site of Peltuinum or in 47 kilometres to Lake Sinizzo. A nice route to experience with a road bike is the one between the Piana di Navelli and Campo Imperatore, while for trekking enthusiasts we recommend the approximately 4-hour walk on the path of the three small lakes (lakes of Fossetta, Passaneto and Racollo), which in winter follows one of the most classic cross-country skiing routes in the Apennines. 

Barisciano is also made for the car addicted. Set out to discover ancient mountain villages, such as Santo Stefano di Sessanio, Calascio and Castel del Monte, printed in the grandeur of the Campo Imperatore plain and, to the south, to the Navelli Plain where you can reach other towns of ancient civilization.
Curl up at the table and "hear" from the local dishes the agricultural history of Barisciano, which until the mid-20th century lived on sheep farming and some crops such as saffron, potatoes, wheat, almond and lentils. 
Here are the soups, such as "sagne e patate," "taccozzelle e patate," with sautéed assogna seasoning, which had a very prominent role here with the ever-present tubers included in all kinds of preparations.

Try, among the "dry" first courses, fettuccine, potato gnocchi with lamb and pork seasoning, and ravioli with sheep's ricotta cheese; among the main courses, don't miss the lamb-based preparations, while the local desserts speak the crunchy language of almonds and are cut-out cookies, macaroons, "nzuccariat" nuts, along with ferratelle, pandispagna, and donuts to be dunked in wine.


  • Villages
  • borghi montani
  • Comuni
  • Mountain resorts

Location of the Destination


42.327521933194, 13.590860366821

Last updated

20/09/2023, 11:22

Published by AbruzzoTurismo