Domenico Boccia is a professional “Environmental Educator” and a “Taste Guide” who regularly leads hiking tours for people caring about the discovery of nature and, through nature, the taste of ancient agricultural and food traditions. He specializes in Abruzzo Tours, his beloved homeland. With his walking tours he will give you the experience of walking in a beautiful environment discovering places through the flavors and traditions.
This time Domenico will take us on virtual, “tasty” tour that we will call “On the cheese track”.
Most villages in Abruzzo, still nowadays, show evident signs of ancient sheep tracks that led from the mountains to the sea. The image of sheep being led from the high mountains to the sea in the fall, before the cold weather hits, and back to the mountains just before the summer, is immediately related to the presence of a very rich wild life and to the dangers, for the flock, that came mainly from the presence of wolves and bears.
People of Abruzzo enjoys the ancient bond between man and the surrounding wild fauna. Following what we will call the “wool thread” and the presence of flock in these land one can better understand, through paths, stories, proverbs and tastings at the typical sheepfolds, the traditions of Abruzzo, traditions that are still pretty much alive and not outdated by technology.
Domenico’s virtual “On the Cheese Track” itinerary starts from Opi a little village in the heart of the National Park of Abruzzo
and a perfect “base camp” from where he will take you for an excursion to the Val Fondillo, inhabited by a large variety of wild animals, and to the “Grotta delle Fate” (Cave of the Fairies) the most elevated water spring in the park.
A day will be dedicated to visiting a local shepherd where you’ll taste freshly made ricotta before hiking till “La Valle Fredda” (The Cold Valley) following the track of old alpine pastures, crossing the karstic dolines that are a typical geological phenomenon of this area until you reach the Village of Pescasseroli one of the best known locations in the National Park of Abruzzo and a quite famous skiing station in winter.
The next day you will start from Pescasseroli, visit the ruins of Castel Mancino and then head to the Vallone di Iorio until you reach a mountain retreat, at 1835 m. of elevation, from where you will enjoy a breathtaking view over most of the Park and if one gets lucky may spot the legendary Marsicano Bear. The night will be spent at the shelter.
In the morning you will leave the “Rifugio di Iorio” (the shelter) and walk on the crest of the Rocca, the border between Abruzzo and Lazio Region till you will reach the crossing of Monte Tranquillo starting descent towards the Sanctuary and back in Pescasseroli walking through the beautiful old beech forest named “Della Difesa.
The following day you will make an excursion to the “Camosciara” Reserve.
This was the initial nucleus of the park back in 1922. You’ll visits the Falls of the Nymphs and “Tre Cannelle”. In the afternoon, walking through the forest, you will arrive at Villetta Barrea Village where you’ll visit Grancia di S.Angelo’s Farm and the laboratories where they produce a special type of cheese named “Caciocavallo” that you will be invited to taste.
On the last day Domenico will take you for a visit at the Museum of Transhumance and then on a tour accompanied by a very special guide, Maria Pia Graziani, specialized in guiding people through and to different tastes.
Walking with her you will reach the little Barrea Village and from there Civitella Alfedena and its wildlife reserve famous for the presence of the Appennine Linx and Wolf.
Domenico Boccia will be our guide for more virtual “Hike to taste” tours. If you like to have more information about his itineraries you may contact him at email@example.com