Central Italy

Looking for a campground one night in Central Italy around Abruzzo, we were climbing up a very twisted road and I couldn’t figure out why the area looked so devastated and ruined, I since found out this area was hit hard by several earthquakes in 2017! The structure of these stone buildings just crumble and to top it off the quake then caused an avalanche! It felt like we were riding through a war zone

Still today the town looks deserted.

We stayed in a campground in Barrea, in the Parco Nationale D Abruzzo, where we met a lovely man called Pasetta. He owned the campground for 50 years and has traveled the world walking! He is 81 yrs and fit as a fiddle. He told us stories of all the places he has walked, but most important to him where the wonderful people he met along the way. He had visited NZ and said it was one of his favorite places. He even wrote a poem about NZ and read it to us in Italian.

The past few days has been some incredible riding. We are travelling down the centre of Italy, up n down passes, through valleys and many national parks. Super grateful to be on motorbikes getting the full benefit of what this amazing country has to offer

A normal day goes like this… wake about 7am (Bindi about 5.30am) doze till about 8.30am. Pull the plug on the mattresses, roll em up, pack the bag, pack the tent, pee and wash, yogurt n cereal, strap bag on bike, off we go! Coffee stop after about an hour riding! Few more hours riding then Late lunch in a restaurant somewhere, ride a few more hours, find somewhere to camp, cook something in the jet boil, bottle of red wine, sleep, repeat!

Not everything goes to plan, Bindi got stuck trying to cross this brook. I think he had google maps on walking mode 🤔 🤣 An hour later, wet boots, very hot, and not much talking we found the lunch spot

Temperature was 39 degrees today down in the valley where we stopped for a lunch and I had the best pasta I have ever eaten in my life! They called it Macaroni, it is hand rolled and melted in mouth, accompanied with salami, grilled veges, meats. We rolled out of there still dressed in HOT motorbike gear and headed up the mountain towards our Airbnb in a little village called Motta Santa Lucia a village close to where mum was born. The plan was to sleep there the night and explore the area next day. No response from the Airbnb guy so we stripped off and slept in the park till about 5.30pm. The locals started to come out to the plaza and we attempted to ask them if they knew Nicollo, the Airbnb. Every one kept saying “yes, the green door” the green door” NO ANSWER AT THE GREEN DOOR!!! We met a lady who called her husband and after many phone calls, he found us some where to sleep. He asked the beer delivery guys to let us follow them to the next town where he has arranged somewhere for us to sleep.

So off we went down the hill and up the hill to the next village called Conflenti in the Province of Catanzaro! Incredible the village grapevine! We turned up in the plaza following the beer truck and they were waiting for is! A beautiful grand B&B the owner just handed us the key and said they would be back in the morning to get us some breakfast! A bed, we were very excited.

Tomorrow is a special day as I get to visit the area where my Mum was born!

3 thoughts on “Central Italy

  1. Dear Irene, I am just loving hearing of your adventures and being inspired. You are setting a wonderful example of what is possible and the tantalising stories of places, people, scenery, warmth and delicious food is helping me to get planning! I am glad I am on your list of contacts for your travel blog! Thanks for keeping us all posted, and best wishes for the next part of the adventure! Helen (Bruce Davey’s wife, who you met during your south island leg of the Te Araroa when you stopped with Bindi at Paul Davey’s house).


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