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Nature

The Molise Coast

Sea, culture, beaches, food and wine - 35 km along the coast of Molise for ever new experiences and emotions

Far away from the hubs of mass tourism, the coast belonging to the Region of Molise extends for 21.7 miles, from the mouth of the Trigno River to that of the Apulian tributary of Saccione. Its limpid sea, lovely flora and fauna and, above all, its grand artistic and cultural heritage make this zone a destination for a relaxing, spontaneous, DIY summer trip, as well as a great launch point for excursions into inland Molise. Termoli is well-known here, but not to be left out are the tiny centers of Marina di Montenero, Petacciato and the lido of Campomarino, all offering a marvelous natural frame for a vacation by the sea.

Make time for the promontory surmounted by the old borgo of Termoli. Surrounded by high defensive walls, and featuring a lively, inhabited center just outside the walls, Termoli is the ideal example of an authentic marine village. Its magnificent tower, the local symbol and the only remaining of its kind from the ancient Swabian Castle, stands out as it watches all life from overhead. In the heart of Termoli, the large Piazza Duomo boasts the beautiful Romanesque facade of the Cathedral of San Basso, where the relics of the town’s two protector saints – San Basso and San Timoteo – are kept. In the vicinity of Montenero, rather, rises the Sanctuary of Santa Maria di Bisaccia, built atop the ancient homonymous Chapel that, due to seismic activity, was raised to the ground. Then, in Petacciato, visit the Church of San Rocco, Romanesque in origin and accompanied by a massive bell tower; it shares the town center with the exquisite Renaissance Palazzo Battiloro. Campomarino, inhabited since Antiquity, is the location of the ruins of an ancient Roman villa (in Arcora). And the Church of Santa Maria a Mare, erected between the 12th and 13th Centuries, preserves precious frescoes from the 1400s.

Things to do abound all throughout the coast of Molise, begining with Termoli. Awarded Europe’s Blue Flag several times over for its transparent waters, its accommodating beach establishments, hotel and athletic offerings satisfy the range of vacationers every summer. Sailing and water sports enthusiasts flock to Rio Vivo Beach in the city’s south.

Petacciato is also a welcoming beach locality with numerous establishments that provide umbrellas, refreshment, and all the other accoutrements. For nature lovers, a stroll through the woods around Petacciato – traversed by the River Tecchio – is a must. Enchanting beaches and limpid seawater are just two of the best characteristics of Campomarino (Province of Campobasso), where travelers can choose from an array of touristic lodghing that includes hotels, house and apartment rentals, campsites, resorts, and restaurants, nightclubs and sports facilities. Campomarino is also a great spot for time with nature; besides its being circumscribed by mesmerizing, sprawling vineyards, it lies near the mouth of the Biferno River, and much of it is occupied by the Faunal Oasis of the Ramitelli Forest.

Underrated taste itineraries that let tourists get to know Molise’s typical cuisine and products, from Termoli’s fish broth and Campomarino’s D.O.C. Biferno wine to the saggiciotto (smoked salame) from Montenero di Bisaccia. Traveling along some of Molise’s many tratturi (or transhumance routes), grassy trails where herd movement has been practiced since pre-Roman times. A visit to the spectacular trabocchi that line the littoral from Termoli to Vasto and Francavilla al Mare (the end of the Abruzzese Coast, also known as the Costa dei Trabocchi).