Gargano is a fascinating land that gives the traveler many experiences and many wonders that you cannot miss. Often, exactly because there are so many things to be done and to be seen, one can let out of sight the most charming places and the most beautiful experiences to live.
To avoid all this and to improve your experience on Gargano, we have decided to write a list of advices, classified for every city, about the things you shouldn’t miss. We begin today with Vieste, wonderful city of Gargano promontory the most exposed into the Adriatic sea among all garganic cities and with wonderful places that will excite and emotion you.
- Being the famous monolith Pizzomunno the key symbol for this splendid town we have to begin our list of advices speaking exactly about it and his beloved Cristalda. The Pizzomunno rock, about 25 meters high is situated exactly at the city’s feet, at the beginning of the famous promenade E. Mattei. This is also known for a wonderful legend that tells about him and his love. According to the legend, Pizzomunno was a young man in love with a charming young lady named Cristalda. But because of mermaids jealousy, this two lovers were separated; Pizzomunno was transformed into the monolith that today all of us can admire meanwhile Cristalda was kidnapped by the mermaids and taken into the depths of the sea. The legend also tells us that every one hundred years, in a full moon night, the two lovers come back to life to meet again and live their dream of love. In the honor of Cristalda was built a beautiful monument that you can admire on the other promenade of Vieste, promenade Europa.
- A boat trip along the coast line will let you discover the wonderful marine caves of Vieste. It can’t be described only with words the incredible charm of this nature’s work of arts; those, probably even the fruit of sea and wind corrosion offers a breathtaking scenery. You will see incredible colors that will merge with the intense blue of the sea and of the sky, the green of the luxuriant nature that seems like it wants to jump into the water and you will listen the song of the wind, waves and seagulls that will carry you into an unknown and fantastic time. In this experience you can admire the incredible Mother Nature’s work of art, the Architiello di San Felice; an arch of rocks in the middle of the sea sculpted only by the force of nature, a true masterpiece.
- The Naturalistic-Archeological oasis “La Salata”, fascinating place due to its ancient history it is an idea place to discover the ancient origins of Vieste; its origins goes back to III-IV century A.D. and it is managed by WWF. Extended on a 6000 m2 territory with a beautiful vegetation of Mediterranean bushes includes at its interior “Necropoli La Salata”, a wonderful early Christian burial complex with more than 300 ancient tombs excavated into the rock.
- Continuing our itinerary at Vieste, we stop to visit the marvelous historical center to discover among the many wonders the imposing Castle Svevo. Constructed by Federico II di Svevia in the XIII century A.D., this dominate the view from the highest point of the old town. The historical center of Vieste will make you live a unique experience, walking through small houses, cribs and alleys and you will be inebriated of typical local products perfumes and incredible colors; the small windows, the ancient stone arches and the wonderful squares that looks at the open sea will emotion you and they will give an unforgettable experience.
- The Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta is another marvel to find in the historical center of Vieste. Its exterior is built in an Apulia Romanesque style with a splendid bell tower in baroque style meanwhile the inside decorations are from 1700.
- Also in the historical center of Vieste is present Chianca Amara, a monument that commemorates the Turk invasion in Vieste. This stone takes its name because on it were decapitated almost 5000 viestans in their intent of defending their city from the pirate Dragut Rais, in 1554. This stone is also testimony of how this people defended their territory, even with their lifes.
- The lighthouse of Vieste is another wonder that you cannot miss; it was built in 1867 and it still has today a great importance for the navigation into the Adriatic Seas thanks also to its incredible strategic position; in fact it is built in front of the city on a natural isle named Scoglio di Santa Eufemia. On this natural isle it can also be found the Cave of Santa Eufemia; its walls have more than 200 writings in Latin and Greek, dated back to III century A.D. Even this is an ideal place to discover the ancient origins of Vieste.
- Trabucchi, ancient fishing machines built with wood piles situated along the Gargano coast, are still funtional today and are another marvel of this land. Exactly here at Vieste you can visit, among the numerous trabucchi, the trabucco of San Francesco that is between the most ancients of this area. It has more than a century of life and it is so special that WWF manages it also (non functional in this moment but also emotional to see). Going around for the trabucchi it’s very likely to find one in work, well, that is the perfect moment to discover how they work and their origin. You’ll see, it will be an experience quite exciting.
- The coastal watching towers are another interesting point you can visit at Vieste. Built in the second half of the ‘500’s and in the most exposed places of the coast, served as a method of warning about the invasions of Saraceni pirates. In fact it was enough that an enemy ship was seen from a tower that immediately it was lit a warning fire, and by doing so, in the other towers was lit another fire and so on.
- Because the sea, of a fantastic light blue, has been forever a reason of proud and a source of income for the habitants of Vieste, the Malacologico Museum is almost a sign of gratitude. Here you will find a vast exhibition of wonderful seashells, rare and unique in the world, collected in various places of the Earth and gatherd from some lovers of this field. Just think that this museum is among the largest and supplied from Europe.
- To get to know better the customs and traditions of viestan people, participate in a patronal feast would be a must. Every year, on April 23 San Giorgio, patron of Vieste is celebrated; on May 9 it is the turn of Santa Maria di Merino; the last is also a good opportunity to get to know better the garganic culture and to visit the Sanctuary of Santa Maria di Merino and the Roman archeological site close to the Sanctuary. In June 13 it is Sant’Antonio celebration. Even September has its Saint, dedicated to the sea and the fisherman protection we have Madonna Stella Maris.
- The Civic Archeological Museum of Vieste is another landmark is you have a passion for archeology. Here you can see many artifacts of this city, some even from III century.
- For beach adventure lovers we can advice some of the most beautiful bays and beaches of Vieste. Going towards Litonarea to Mattinata and turning for Pugnochiuso, you will find Baia di Campi, Baia di Porto Greco and Cala La Pergola. These are all made of round rocks and not with sand like other beaches; they also have the characteristic of being deep close to the shore. Staying closer to the city of Vieste we can take advantage of the beautiful beaches of San Lorenzo and of Molinella and why not try even the largest ones, the beach of Pizzomunno, the beach of Europa promenade and Santa Maria beach.
- As a last advice, after seeing all this wonders, natural or manmade, is that of tasting the exquisite local dishes of Vieste, maybe taste them while watching the sea for giving to yourself the maximum of emotion. Between the main local dishes we advice the famous “ciambot”, a fish soup made with freshly caught fish, anchovies with green turnips, orecchiette with green turnips, stufted eggplant and peppers and why not grilled caciocavallo, sea fruit salad and bruschetta garganica. Come ultimo consiglio, dopo aver visto tutte queste meraviglie naturali e non, c’è quello di assaggiare gli squisiti piatti locali di Vieste, magari degustandoli affacciati proprio sul mare per regalarvi il massimo dell’emozione. Tra i piatti principali che consigliamo c’è il famoso “ciambot”, zuppa di pesce fresco appena pescato, alici e cime di rapa arrancate, orecchiette alle cime di rapa, melanzane e peperoni ripieni e perché no, caciocavallo alla brace, insalata di mare e bruschetta garganica….!!
These are the advices that we gatherd to make you spend your experience at Vieste at its best. These are the main wonders that this fantastic town can offer to its beloved traveler. And now what are you waiting, begin to think about spending an experience on Gargano, it will be an unforgettable emotion..!
Great experience on Gargano to you all…!!
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