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Civitella Messer Raimondo

A little but big "fief" located at the foot of the Maiella Mountains


26 maggio 2023

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3 min

  • Comuni d’Abruzzo
Civitella Messer Raimondo, Ph. Zitumassin CC BY-SA 3.0


Descrizione lunga

If you happen traveling the Abruzzo Trail, which starts in Pescara and goes back through the villages of the Vestina area to the coast, make a stop along the way in Civitella Messer Raimondo, a small community at the foot of the Maiella that was inhabited since prehistoric times.

Its stone houses stand on a rocky crust. The Verde and Aventino rivers wash over them and a slice of Lake Casoli, also known as Sant'Angelo, a artificial lake in the municipality of Casoli near the border with the territories of Civitella Messer Raimondo and Gessopalena.
The ancient settlement is evidenced by rock paintings from 3000 B.C. found in the cave "La Capraia", in the mountains, by tombs equipped with a rich set of bronze furnishings, in the Fonte Liberatori district, and by a thermal building from Roman times, adorned with mosaics, on the hill of "Il Piano".

You may be wondering "Who was Messer Raimondo?". He was Raimondo da Anchino, a noble commander and lieutenant, who ruled the country in the late fifteenth century. 
Enter the hamlet, which every day makes its ancient feudal lord come alive, and visit the Church of SS. Salvatore, of thirteenth-century origins but restructured: the three-aisled interior, which is covered by barrel vaults, preserves a precious organ, the only example of the work of Quirino Cipollone and son, a Launchian family of famous organ craftsmen.
Visit the Castle or Palace of the Baglioni counts, who began their lordship in the town around 1800 and settled in the monumental building, which stands in Piazza Roma, the highest part of the historic centre. 
We do not know the exact date of its construction but the presence of bastioned walls suggests a medieval foundation. The main facade is inserted between stone cantonments and is on three levels. On the right side there is a corner turret with a defensive function.

You enter the castle through an imposing portal, made of Maiella stone, overlooked by a balcony on corbels, also made of stone, on which three openings appear. In the inner court there is a heavily renovated tower that had sighting functions.
The 19th-century Palazzo Gattone, which you reach from an alley on Corso Umberto I, is also attractive: the main entrance is characterized by a stone ashlar portal, and the upper-floor rooms host the paintings and sculptures of the protagonists of a summer event dedicated to art.
And now let's discuss sports. 

You can go canyoning on the Aventine River, if you are keen on it. Trekking and nature bathing can be experienced in nearby Fara San Martino nature reserve, which is just a few kilometers away, with the headwaters of the Verde River, whose name comes from emerald colored algae on the bottom.
Don't miss the gnocchi al sugo, "cif ciaf di maiale", "chitarrina con pallotte" and "campanella", a sausage from the mixture of shoulder meat, bacon and ham, spiced with chopped hot bell pepper and tied by hand, as the village farmers used to do. Its name comes from its shape and the system of curing: the product was hung from the beams of the houses and the opening of the door caused it to swing like a bell. 
Another typical product of the area that you must try is Civitellese Almond Cake, whose ancient recipe is guarded and handed down from generation to generation by local families.


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Location of the Destination


42.089312102742, 14.21632886657

Last updated

11/01/2024, 13:19

Published by AbruzzoTurismo