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Published: October 23rd 2013
Avellino, across the Italian peninsula, up the east coast to San Merino – afternoon of 19 & 20 October 2013
After leaving the Amalfi Coast, we got to Salerno and headed north to Avellino where we did some food shopping. We then got on the toll-road until we hit a secondary road north at Candela, driving up to Foggia. Staying on the toll road we reached the eastern coast of Italy after driving through some broad-acre farmland. All the hills had been ploughed up and everything looked really dry.
We reached a town called Termoli where we decided to go back onto the coastal road to see more interesting sights. However there were trees between us and the beach so eventually we went back on the toll road.
More and more camp sites are closing for the winter, so we were a little more dictated to where we would stay each night. We ended up driving just north of Pescara, in a little place called Roseto degli Abruzzi which is right on the beach (we were back on the Adriatic Sea).
As we were driving up the eastern coast, the sun was setting. It was
absolutely brilliant and extrodinary. But wait, there is more. When the moon came up and we had arrived at the Eurcamping Site, it was a full moon and the reflection on the sea was beautiful. Tom and I pulled out a cold Corona and watched the moon for awhile before having dinner.
The next morning the sunrise (no I didn’t see the sun rise but it was about 1 hour after!!) was beautiful. We sat outside and had our breakfast. The sun was warm and we knew the weather was going to be kind to us again.
The Adriatic sea was very calm and blue. We could hardly distinguish between the sky and the sea. Many part of this eastern coast was a little like the Gold Coast. One village ran into the other. Several of the villages didn’t have high-rise buildings so had a little more ‘personality. We could imagine what the coast line would be like in the summer holidays.
We stayed on the toll road for more speedy travel. By 1 o’clock we were just outside Sam Merino. We parked on top of a hill (to have lunch) which looked over the town and
we could see a really tall hill (749m Monte Titano) with a couple of castles on them. This was Centro of the old town of San Merino. We then drove into the city and easily found a park, especially for motor homes.
We found there were 3 separate lifts to go up the 3 levels to the old town. It was the most efficient trip to a hill-top old town we have experienced….and we have been to a few now!!! On the other side of the hill there is a funicular you can catch to get to the old town. San Marino’s highlights are its spectacular views, its UNESCO-listed streets, and a stash of rather bizarre museums dedicated to vampires, torture, wax dummies and strange facts. We saw them all but didn’t go in!!!
What we saw was a lot of was gun shops. As San Merino is an independent Republic, it has different laws to its surrounding Italy, so guns can be sold easily. It’s an interesting country of 61 sq km, it’s the oldest republic and the world’s oldest surviving sovereign state (since AD 301), it has the lowest unemployment rate in Europe and one of
the planet’s highest GDP. Worth a visit.
On top of all that, they have done an excellent job at restoring the Basilica, several castles, buildings which house the museums and the multiple towers. The streets are paved with smooth stones and zigzag up the hill to the various buildings. There are of course, the obligatory tourist shops.
We then drove further north onto Bologna, via the motorway once again, and camped at Centro Turistico Citta Di Bologna from where we will visit Bologna tomorrow.
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