The Cilento National Park is an ideal place for those looking for a holiday immersed in nature, history and relaxation. The area is rich in archaeological sites of great importance such as Paestum and Velia, two ancient cities of Magna Graecia, and the prehistoric caves of Marina di Camerota.
Cilento and Vallo di Diano are also home to historic towns such as Castellabate, Castel San Lorenzo, Teggiano and Agropoli, and medieval villages such as San Severino and Pisciotta, which offer a wide range of cultural and historical attractions.
The nature of the Cilento National Park is extraordinary, with caves and oases of great beauty such as the Pertosa caves, a complex of karst cavities, or the Capo Palinuro caves, an ideal area for diving enthusiasts.
Cilento: welcome to the Southern Italy
The Cilento, Vallo di Diano and Alburni National Park is a protected area of great importance for the conservation of biodiversity. Established in 1991 and declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998, it covers an area of 181,048 hectares and covers a wide range of environments, from the Tyrrhenian coast to the foothills of the Campania-Lucan Apennines. Cilento is just south of Amalfi Coast and 2 hours far from tha chaos of Naples.
Cilento has numerous caves and natural oases, including the Castelcivita caves, a complex of karst cavities, the Morigerati WWF Oasis and the Capo Palinuro Caves, an ideal area for diving enthusiasts. There are many things to do and see in Cilento. With a 7-day holiday you will have the opportunity to discover the most beautiful and unmissable ones. With the weekly offer of the Residence and B&B Villamirella you can spend a week in a residence in Cilento and save 10%.
The vast territory of the Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park and the diversity of environments that make it up represent an ideal habitat for a great variety of species of flora and fauna. Among the mammals present there are the wild boar, the badger, the Apennine hare, the porcupine and the wolf. As for bird life, there are the golden eagle, the short-toed eagle, the peregrine falcon, the chough, the green woodpecker and the rare black woodpecker.
The Cilento Park is also a rich source of plant species, with over 1,800 species of spontaneous autochthonous plants surveyed, about 10% of which are endemic or rare species, such as the Palinuro primrose (Primula palinuri), the symbolic flower of the park . Along the coasts you can still find rare species of sea lily, while on the coastal cliffs there are the rock carnation, the centaury and the Neapolitan bellflower.
For these reasons Cilento has been included in the prestigious network of Biosphere Reserves of the UNESCO MAB Program (Man and Biosphere).
What to see in Cilento: places to visit
Cilento is a unique tourist destination, which offers a combination of history, nature and lots of sea. The area is famous for its ancient origins, as demonstrated by the archaeological area of Paestum, founded by Greek colonists in the 6th century BC and considered one of the most beautiful archaeological sites in Italy.
Furthermore, Cilento is a territory rich in myths and legends, such as the beautiful town of Capo Palinuro, which takes its name from the famous helmsman of Aeneas, who died in these waters.
Cilento is also famous for its beautiful beaches, such as those of Palinuro and Marina di Camerota, which have won numerous awards for the beauty of their beaches and their crystalline waters. These locations are also very popular with diving enthusiasts, thanks to their coves and sea caves.
Also worth visiting are the beautiful Certosa di San Lorenzo in Padula, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, and the characteristic town of Castellabate, whose historic center was born around the castle built in the 12th century and recognized as a World Heritage Site by the 'UNESCO.
Finally, the small Cilento villages such as Acciaroli, Pollica and Pioppi are enchanting places that offer a peaceful and genuine environment. Acciaroli, in particular, is a fishing village that inspired the writer Ernest Hemingway to write the novel The old man and the sea.
The most beautiful beaches of Cilento, the cleanest sea in Campania
Cilento is an ideal place for those looking for a relaxing holiday by the sea. The Cilento coast is indented, full of natural caves and hidden bays, and famous for the quality of its waters which have often received the title "Blue Flag".
Among the most beautiful beaches to visit, we recommend the Buondormire beach in Palinuro, reachable only by sea and characterized by emerald green waters and fine golden sand. Another unmissable beach is the Baia degli Infreschi, also known as Cala degli Infreschi, located between Marina di Camerota and Scario and characterized by a beach of pebbles mixed with sand and a sea with deep waters.
Cala Bianca beach is another ideal destination for those looking for an exceptionally beautiful beach with white sand and clear sea waters. Finally, Punta Licosa, declared a Marine Protected Area, offers one of the most beautiful and award-winning beaches in Italy.
Cilento and the protected marine areas of the Cilento coast
The Cilento, Vallo di Diano and Alburni National Park is a protected area of great naturalistic and landscape importance, which hosts a vast range of environments and species of protected flora and fauna. In particular, the park hosts two protected marine areas of great beauty and importance, the Costa degli Infreschi and della Masseta and the Area of Santa Maria di Castellabate. Baia degli Infreschi in Marina di Camerota is famous for its submerged caves, underwater springs, beaches and small bays. The Punta Licosa reserve in Santa Maria di Castellabate is characterized by the presence of Cilento Flysch, a rare rock formation composed of layers of particular colors. Both areas are home to a diverse range of unique fauna and flora, including oceanic posidonia, groupers, moray eels and lobsters.
The Punta Licosa Reserve is also famous for the presence of the "red of Licosa", a particular variety of rock mullet that lives only in these waters and which has been included in the list of Traditional Agri-Food Products (PAT). Cilento is also a protected area due to its rich biodiversity, with unique plant species such as the sea lily and trees typical of Cilento such as olive and fig trees.
The trekking paths inside the Cilento National Park
The Cilento Park is an ideal place for nature and outdoor sports lovers. It offers numerous hiking trails, including the Magliano Nuovo-Postiglione route, a 30 km hike that crosses the Gole del Calore and connects the villages of Magliano Nuovo and Felitto, passing through a medieval bridge.
The Sentiero del Castelluccio is another option, 10 km long with a vertical drop of 500 meters, which leads to the top of Castelluccio and offers a spectacular view of Marina di Pisciotta and Capo Palinuro.
For the more trained, the Revolutionary Cilento Path retraces the historical itinerary of the revolutionary uprisings of 1828. Finally, the Lovers' Path is an easy 2 km path with a difference in altitude of 140 meters, which offers a breathtaking view of the Gulf of Velia , Punta Telegrafo and Capo Palinuro.
Cilento, home of the Mediterranean diet and of over one hundred year olds
Cilento, known for being the area where Ancel Keys conducted his studies on the Mediterranean Diet, boasts an extraordinary longevity, with 30 centenarians for every 100,000 inhabitants, more than double the rest of Italy. What are the secrets of this longevity?
The diet, based on seasonal, local and frugal foods, plays an important role in the lifestyle of the inhabitants of Cilento. Furthermore, attention to conviviality, social relationships, outdoor physical activity and contact with nature, together with personality traits such as resilience, autonomy and emotional stability, are key elements in the longevity of Cilento residents. Furthermore, the strong religious and family component in their lives helps to give life meaning and purpose.
As underlined by UNESCO, the Mediterranean Diet, of which Cilento is the cradle, is much more than a simple food model, but is an expression of the culture and history of the area, characterized by skills, knowledge, rituals, symbols and traditions related to the cultivation, harvesting, fishing, breeding, conservation and sharing of food. In summary, the Mediterranean Diet represents a way of life that emphasizes the values of hospitality, neighborliness, intercultural dialogue and creativity, guided by respect for diversity.
For your italian holidays choose Cilento, choose authenticity
Cilento hides authentic jewels among its Cilento villages, where you can admire uncontaminated landscapes and discover ancient traditions that are still alive. In summer, the numerous festivals and fairs will give you the opportunity to taste the delicious local gastronomy. The region offers a unique combination of sea and mountains with breathtaking views along the Cilento coast, accompanied by a rich history and craftsmanship. By choosing to spend your holidays in Cilento in a family residence, you will have the opportunity to explore the most fascinating medieval villages and historic centers for a unique and authentic experience.