A view of the town of Pacentro, in Abruzzo inside the mountains of Majella National Park

Best Attractions in Pacentro

Pacentro is an ancient hill town, situated in the heart of the Majella National Park in Abruzzo, Italy. In 2001, Pacentro was awarded the title as ‘One of the Most Beautiful Villages in Italy.’

On one of our two tours to Pacentro, you’ll have the opportunity to discover the town; a storybook village from a different era. Now, we’ll introduce you to all the best attractions in Pacentro.

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Zip Line

Rob soaring above Abruzzo National Park on the Zipline

Fly like an eagle over the Majella National Park and Pacentro itself on the Zipline Majella. Glide down the 1km long cable at 80km per hour, and savor fantastic views of the ancient city and the surrounding mountains.

The first zipline in Central Italy promises an experience both safe, and extreme.

Caldoreschi

‘I Caldorschi’ is a week-long event in August, which recreates the mediaeval atmosphere of 1450, the time Pacentro was ruled by feudal lord, Antonio Calora. Expect parades in medieval costumes, music performances, duels, jousts, and even witches. These period re-enactments finish in a perfect medieval setting; the Caldoresco Castle of Pacentro, an authentic jewel of Abruzzo.

Corsa Degli Zingari

‘Corsa degli Zingari’ is a competition where the young men of the town race each other barefoot, down steep, treacherous paths. This event, wholly unique to Pacentro, has been held on the first Sunday of September for over five centuries.

Once, the Corsa degli Zingari was regarded as an essential right of passage for manhood, a military recruitment test, and a way to win reward or social favor. The final goal is the Church of the Madonna di Loreto in the historic center of Pacentro, where runners attend to their wounds. Afterward, a celebration parade commences.

Pane, Abruzzo e Fantasia

Italy is known for its great food culture. But the pleasure lies in not only eating well, but cooking a fresh, delicious meal.

Find experiential tourism at its best as you learn how to make traditional Abruzzo dishes from scratch. After class, dine in the restaurant with fireplace, or sit outside and enjoy the bird’s eye view of Pacentro and the entire valley, as you enjoy the fruits of your labour.

Settimana Santa (Holy Week)

On Holy Week, actors stage dramatic scenes throughout Pacentro, inspired by the Passion and Death of Christ. Throughout the week, special events are held, with Easter Mass as the grand finale. On Good Friday, a procession with sacred images are carried throughout the town.

Sagra Della Polta & Pecora al Cutturo

Twice each year, Pacentro hosts outdoor cooking festivals that celebrate  their local culinary traditions. ‘Sagra Della Polta’ focuses on celebrates an ancient local farmer’s dish of  local-favorite beans, potatoes and cabbage. Pecora al Cutturo’ is a celebration of the local, traditional, spiced-sheep stew. YUM!

Street Boulder

Once every year, free climbers from around the world converge on Pacentro for this unique international sporting event. The ancient brick, stone, windows, and balconies of this historic town challenge climbers of all levels.

The day ends with a feast in the main Piazza, of course!

Taverna dei Caldora

This restaurant celebrates regional cuisine with specialities such as spaghetti with saffron and truffles in the former wine cellar of a 16th century palace.

Recognise it? George Clooney’s The American was filmed here.

Mercatini di Natale (Christmas Market)

The streets come alive during the Christmas Market Festival of Pacentro. Over 50 stands set up in kiosks and historic houses host local artists and craftsmen. Crafts, food and wine, clothing, Santa’s Grotto, pony rides, marionettes, music, and lots of fun for young and old.

Presepe Vivente (Living Nativity)

Joseph and Mary’s quest for an inn is recreated in the picturesque streets of Pacentro.

Visit to enjoy a holiday event which combines religion, flavors and Pacentro’s picturesque streets.