Molise is one of the smallest regions in Italy and can be considered as a city of 300,000 inhabitants on an area of 4,438 km² and divided into neighborhoods such as Campobasso, Termoli and Larino that do not exceed 50,000 residents.
Between sea, trabucchi and tratturi
The small region boasts an ancient and fascinating territory, rich in Roman and Sannite ruins and wet by a Blue Flag sea. Another interesting feature are the tratturi, the routes that have always been used to move the flock from Abruzzo to Apulia.
The regional capital is Termoli, a city overlooking the coast of the trabucchi, ancient fishing tools spread over the central Adriatic coast. Here they are located near the ancient village and have been particularly important in the past for a seaside village like Termoli, as they were able to catch them even in the case of bad climatic conditions, which did not allow fishing boats to leave.
Once in the city, leaving the car at the port parking lot, you reach the old village through a spiral staircase. At this point it’s nice to get lost in the labyrinth of the alleyways of the old village, driving you between the pastel-colored houses with the scent of the sea.
Few steps between lanes and rejecélle, as well as being called the narrow streets, and you will find yourself in the square overlooking the Duomo dedicated to San Basso by the severe architecture that contains elements of the Romanic and Gothic carved in the rosewood marble of Gargano, while arches and decorations tell of Pisan and Arabic influences. From August 3 to 5, the Saint Patron San Basso is celebrated in Termoli with various events. The main event is the Regatta of San Basso on August 3rd, during which there is an evocative procession in memory of the miraculous find of the relics of the saint, by some fishermen.
On the other side of the village, attention is drawn to the scale of the castle of Federico II and the trabucco at the foot of the ancient walls overhanging the sea. Most probably the Termoli castle was part of a wider defense system, consisting of walls that cradled the whole perimeter of the city and several cobbled towers, of which only one has been preserved intact and located at the entrance to the ancient village.
The glimpse extends over the fine sandy coastline alternating with rocks and submerged caves, well-known 16 times of the Blue Flag of Europe, where there are 30 well organized beaches and distributed in the beaches of Sant’Antonio, the most popular at the foot of the Lungomare Cristoforo Columbo to the north of the Old Village, and Rio Vivo to the south, more sheltered from the winds.
After the walk, the gourmet stopover based on the fish broth called U vredétte is compulsory. We tasted it, along with a delicious parmigiana of alici, from the Osteria Dentro le mura (Via Federico II of Svevia 3, Tel. +39 339 5024932), prepared by chef Antonio Terzano and made from fresh fish.
Few tables both inside and out on the small dehor on the walls that look at the blue of the sea. We chose to eat outside, caressed by the gentle breeze and sun-heated, watched from the towers of the Swabian fortress.
And now we can also say, paraphrasing the Lucano Rocco Papaleo that besides Basilicata also Molise exists and it also does through the kitchen and the grace of Antonio and Lina Terzano. Now we have to deepen the knowledge of this region fascinating for its ancient and even mysterious atmosphere.