Mountain retreat, perfect walking base. Free Wifi


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From $131 / night

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  • 3 bedrooms
  • 1 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 8
  • Villa

A comfortable retreat sleeping 6 to 8 people, in the foothills of the Majella Mountains, a protected mountain nature reserve. Close to the magnificent Parco Nazionale d'Abruzzo, recently named by Lonely Planet as among the top 5 National Parks in Europe, 'unparalleled hiking country'.

The villa is surrounded by farmland, forests and wilderness, overlooking a vista of olive trees, hilltop villages, nearby peaks, and a valley bottom with a fast-flowing river. Simply but comfortably furnished, with TV and free Wifi, and a perfect base for large groups or families interested in trekking, walking, cycling, mountain biking or river rafting i...Read more


Mountain retreat, perfect walking base. Free Wifi
Civitella Messer Raimondo, Abruzzo, Italy

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Additional Location Information

The mountainous Abruzzo region is not much explored by tourists, but it's one of Europe's best-kept secrets. It's sometimes called 'the green heart of Italy'. It's a vast area of mountains, lakes and wilderness in the centre of the country, between Rome and the Adriatic Sea, About half the region is protected National Park, with some of Italy's highest mountains (Gran Sasso is 2912 metres or 9554 ft). The area is home to protected species including the Marsican Bear, wolves, and mountain deer, unusual birds, and unique plantlife. To the east are miles of protected Adriatic coastline.

Casa della Meridiana is on a south-facing hillside in the Aventino Valley, 'between mountains and sea'. Behind are the massive ramparts of the Majella Mountains, often snow-capped from November to May. Walks into the high mountains start just five km from the house, gentler strolls begin right at the front door. The house overlooks a fertile valley of olive groves and orchards, with vista to the far horizon of hilltop villages, mountain peaks and distant forest.

Good beaches on the Adriatic coast are only about 35km away, with unfrequented coves, safe swimming and inexpensive seafood restaurants. The 'Trabocchi Coast' is famous for its unique, ancient wooden fishing platforms.

In winter, there is good skiing at resorts only around 35 minutes drive into the high mountain at Pescocostanza, Roccaraso or Passo Lanciano.


Trekking and walking - rambles, day treks and multi-day treks are all easily accessible from Casa della Meridiana. The house connects with a network of waymarked paths offering low-level and high-level mountain walking. Monte Amaro (2793 metres, or 9,163 ft), the highest peak of the Majella, is a two-day trek behind the house. There are numerous mountain huts and refuges and we can arrange local guides. The house is stocked with maps, books and walking guides.

Birdwatching - eagles and other raptors are frequently seen soaring above the house and the Abruzzo mountains and coastline shelter a wide variety of unusual southern European species.

Indigenous wildlife - trips can be arranged to the high mountains to search for signs of the rare Marsican Bear, native Abruzzo wolves, and camosci - mountain deer similar to chamois. These protected animals are shy and rarely encountered, but there is a camosci reserve close to the house, and a wolf sanctuary further afield.

River rafting - the free flowing Aventino River (half a kilometre from the house) offers seasonal white-water rafting and canoeing. Tuition and groups can be arranged.

Cycling - the Aventino Valley is much appreciated by road and off-road cyclists. Many road races comes through the valley which has an excellent combination of flat roads, hills, mountains, ascents and descents. Off-road cycling is also possible with mountain bikes locally for hire. There is a bike shop in Lama dei Peligni.

History and archaeology - the Majella Mountains are internationally famous for the ancient 'hermitages' scattered in the mountains, some more than a thousand years old, most of them easily visited by car, and foot. The area is also peppered with castles and other historic sites, and every village has itschurch and historic centre. Roccascalegna Castle and the Roman town of Juventum are 20 minutes away. 'Majella Man', a neolithic burial, was discoveredin a field just a kilometre from the house.

Markets and shopping - each of the ten villages along the valley has a street market on a different day of the week, selling clothes, household goods, cheese, fruit and vegetables. The best are the Friday market in Casoli, Lanciano market on Saturday and an excellent, varied market in Guardiagrele (30 min drive) on Sundays.

Local wines - Abruzzo vineyards are the source of world-famous Montepulciano d'Abruzzo red wine and the Trebbiano d'Abruzzo and Pecorino white wines, made in Ortona, about half an hour away. Ortona wines are widely appreciated throughout Italy as cheap, quality, refreshing wines, and some vintages are of top quality, with prices to match. Winery tours and tastings are available. It's also possible to take your own containers and 'fill up' with wine by the ten-litre container (through a 'petrol pump'!).

Restaurants and eating out - traditional Abruzzo cuisine is unique and can be very localised, and for food lovers there are plenty of fine cafes, bars and restaurants within easy reach, each offering a new and distinctive experience. The nearest restaurant is ten minutes away, offering a variety of fresh, local produce including the Abruzzo's trademark feast of arrosticini (barbecued lamb skewers). Plenty of other restaurants within 20 minutes offer all kinds of gastronomic delights to suit every pocket, from simple back-street trattorias to high-class ristorantes with award-winning chefs, farm-kitchen 'agriturismo' restaurants, mountain-hut grill rooms and bars. We have a listing of local restaurants for easy reference. Further afield,but only 35 minutes away, the Trabocchi Coast on the Adriatic Sea is noted for wonderful fish restaurants.

Pasta - some of Italy's finest pasta is made in the village of Fara San Martino, only 5 kilometres from the house, in several factories and artisanal producers The reaon for this is the clear, pure spring water that gushes from the mountainside. Among the internationally-known brands from Fara are Del Verde, Di Cecco and Da Cocco.

Caves, gorges, waterfalls and natural spectacles - the whole Abruzo region is thick with natural wonders, and two of them are within ten minutes of the house - the Cavallone Caves, at Lama dei Peligni, accessible in summer through a cablecar, and the San Martino Gorge. Other natural phenomena, viewpoints and curiosities are scattered around he region, many accessible by car, others only after a challenging walk. Guidebooks are available in the house.

Festas, street festivals and religious events - every town and village in Abruzzo has at least one festival or street party, especially in the summer months, with singing and dancing, open-air food and wine, and fireworks. Food festivals celebrate everything from mushrooms and garlic to tripe and wild boar. Abruzzo is also famous for its ancient religius festivals, notably the snake festival at Cocullo (one hour away) each May. TLama dei Peligni holds two 'devil-burning' bomgire ceremonies each year, in December and August, as well as religious festivals and an annual pastry-making competition.

Beach and seaside - only 35 minutes away, the nearest beach at Fossacessia Marina is clean, well-maintained, free, and several good-value fish restaurants are right there. To the north, more developed beaches offer sun loungers, water-skiing and sailboarding, while to the south are many small small sandy coves with safe swimming, nature reserves, and seaside walks. The entire Trabocchi Coast is famous for its traditional wooden fishing platforms, some of which are also restaurants serving fish frsh-caught from the sea.

Skiing - from around December to March, dependeing on weather, skiing is available at several ski resorts all within about 40 minutes of the house, with ski schools, equipment hire, on-piste and off-piste skiing. Abruzzo skiing is among the most southerly in Europe.

Touring - Casa della Meridiana is well-placed for motor or bike touring throughout the whole Abruzzo region and Adriatic coast. Pescara, the regional centre (marina and port), the historic town of Chieti, the ancient monastic town of lanciano and Guardiagrele are all within easy reach. Day trips are possible to Rome and Naples, and centrally-placed Abruzzo is also an ideal base to make longer trips further afield to Bologna, Florence or the south by car, bus or train.

More About This Location

Away from it all, Mountain nearby, Rural retreats


Last updated on December 29, 2013
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Rates shown in $ USD (Rental listed originally in GBP)

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$131$574$2,4591 Night
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Rental fees

  • Additional guests | per stay | Fee applies to parties of 5 guests or more occyping more than two bedrooms
  • Damage deposit | $246

Additional notes from the owner

Prices quoted here are for 'family' occupancy (groups or families of up to four). For larger groups (five to a maximum of eight), a small additional charge of £50 per week will be made to cover additional cleaning and linen costs. In spring and autumn periods, we will make a reduction of £50 a week as a special 'couples rate', for a couple occupying only one bedroom. Please email for a detailed quote.

All final prices quoted for accommodation are INCLUSIVE of final cleaning, linen and towels, electricity, gas, h/c water, and broadband WIFI. NO extra charges will ever apply except for a winter fuel supplement, where applicable, in colder weather (usually November to March). See below.

Booking arrangements:

In order to confirm a booking, we require a non-refundable deposit of 20%, payable by PayPal or bank transfer to Abruzzo Immobilare Mare e Monti in Italy. Balance and full payment must be paid on arrival.

Currency: Prices and deposit are quoted in £ sterling, however payment of final balance must be paid locally in Euro at a conversion rate agreed on the date booking is confirmed (usually the rate prevailing on the date of confirmation).

We ask for a security deposit of 150 Euro to be paid locally in cash in Euro on arrival. This deposit will be returned in full on inspection of the property, LESS any charges for major breakages, loss or significant damage, and the cost of any winter fuel supplement (if applicable)

Casa della Meridian is heated by gas central heating. If central heating is used, a charge will be made based on actual fuel used (normally only likely to apply November to March). A log fire is also available.

Arrival and departure:

Changeover day: we will do our best to be flexible especially for guests on Ryanair flights which may arrive and depart mid-week. In peak season (July, August and September) changeover day must be on a Friday or weekend.

We ask guests to leave the house by 10am on the day of departure to allow for cleaning and restocking. Arriving guests will normally be able to access the house after 4pm on the day of arrival. However we will do our best to be flexible so that guests can co-ordinate travel arrangements and flight times, especially if there is a gap between arriving and departing guests. Please email us your flight times and we will advise.


  • Towels Provided
  • Linens Provided
  • Fireplace
  • Sofabed
  • Central heating
  • Washing Machine
  • Local Guides/Maps
  • Ceiling Fans
Phone / Internet
  • Wireless Internet
Pool / Spa
  • Sunbed
Property Features
  • Parking
  • Mountain Views
  • Microwave
  • Charcoal Grill
  • Refrigerator
  • Dishwasher
  • Toaster
  • Oven
  • Freezer
  • Stereo or CD player
  • DVD Player
  • Television
  • Radio
  • Books
  • Board Games
  • Outdoor Dining Area
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Patio
Onsite Equipment
  • Golf Clubs
  • Beach Towels
  • Pet friendly - yes
  • Smoking allowed - yes
  • Suitable for children - ask
  • Suitable for the elderly - ask
  • Wheelchair accessible - no

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