The ancient hillside village of Navelli in Abruzzo, Italy known for its “Oro Rosso” or (Red Gold) referring to its production of saffron is a great tour destination as opposed to other well-trodden paths in Italy.
If you want a more relaxed and laid-back experience of the Italian countryside, Navelli is definitely worth exploring. Along with neighboring towns in the region, this quaint little village is considered one of the most beautiful of its kind in the country and belongs to an exclusive club known as Borghi piu belli d’Italia or literally the most beautiful burghs in Italy.
The town is the epitome of postcard perfect, with its cobbled streets, pale golden stone houses, arched windows, huge wooden doors, and rocky stone steps, all backdropped by the lush green of the surrounding nature.
The town of Navelli went through two major periods of reformation, namely the Medieval and the Renaissance periods. Influences from both eras are very palpable in the way that the city and its structures are built. A walking tour of this hilltop town is a great way to explore its amazing wonders, starting with the 17th century palace called Palazzo Santucci, a medieval fortress with beautiful stone staircases that lead up to open galley views over the rest of the village. Next to this palazzo is San Sebastiano Church and its iconic bell tower.
Another major feature in the town of Navelli is Porta Castello. This is one of the most historic spots in town and a major gateway into the village. Since the massive earthquake of 1456, the it has been restored and expanded to include even more imposing walls, that dominate the area.
Apart from the town’s palazzos and centuries-old churches, Navelli is also quite well known for its superb culinary fare. As a matter of fact, the region is one of the main producers of some of the best saffron herbs in the country, not to mention its abundance of olive groves and crocus flower blooms.
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