Archive for the 'Calitri' Category

Discovering beautiful lakes on our doorstep (Part 2)

Sunday, September 29th, 2013

Laghi di Monticchio, Italy In my previous blog you will have read all about our adventures in and around the fair town of Potenza. If not, go right back to start and catch up before reading on…

So having chanced upon the wondrous Laghi di Monticchio after our laborious travails through the hills of Basilicata, we promised ourselves to come back and explore this little hidden paradise properly. This is exactly what we did a few days later, following the much easier route from Calitri along the gently winding valley road en route to Melfi. Well before that town, however, you turn off and upwards towards Rionero in Vulture. (more…)

Discovering beautiful lakes on our doorstep (Part 1)

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

Countryside Calitri, Campania,  ItalySo there we were, on holiday in Calitri. The open French doors let in a cooling breeze and views of an open countryside of green valleys and forested hills. I was peering over a map of the region, as I am want to do when ‘exploring’ new territory.

Ever since I first arrived here and began studying the local maps, the name of Potenza seemed to be calling out to me – as it did on this particular occasion. I know, it’s just a dot on a map with a name beside it, like so many others on a fold-out atlas, but while Bari, Matera, Brindisi, Foggia, Benevento and Cassino are all still on my to-do list, Potenza had, well, the most potent pull of all. (more…)

Melfi, castle town of the Langobardi

Thursday, November 1st, 2012

Lombardi castle of Melfi, ItalyThough set in the midst of peaceful rural country, Calitri is a convenient point from which to explore surroundings that include Vesuvius, Naples, Amalfi, Positano, Salerno, Capri, Benevento, Monte Casino, Herculaneum, Bari, Puglia and the Adriatic Coast, to name a few. You’ll be able to reach most of these places in little more than an hour, but if you just want to cruise around the countryside and go for a short trip to visit local towns there is also plenty to see.

At little more than a quarter of an hour’s drive from Calitri, Melfi is just such a town. Situated at the base of the heavily forested Monte Vulture, this ancient town traces its roots to pre-Roman times when it formed part of the ancient region of Lucania. Touched also by the Samnites and classical Greeks, it was long a quiet little town within Roman Italy before the fall of the Roman Empire changed the landscape considerably and added further elements to the mix. (more…)

Why Italian food is so good

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

Le Cannazze di CalitriI like a lot of Italian things: cars, furniture, clothes, art, etc. What all of the above have in common is design, that special Italian flair for creating things that are pleasing to the senses, and the eye in particular. But, as in most countries, there are two sides to Italy. One is a world of elegance and sophistication, reflected in the fashion of Milan, the architecture of Florence, the monuments of Rome and the uniqueness of the Venetian thalassocracy.

The other Italy is an earthy world inhabited by real salt-of-the-earth people whose priorities in life are not being stylish and sophisticated but enjoying food, family and the simple pleasures in life. It is within this category that most Italian food falls, for where other countries have a rather clear distinction between haute and peasant cuisine, Italian gastronomy is remarkably homogenous. (more…)