Everyone knows that every country is a small box containing legends and traditions that are lost far away in time. A distant, remote past full of testimonies that have traced the destiny of a territory.
In Marina di Camerota, a seaside village in the Cilento National Park, lies a history as old as the hills. With a suggestive walk between the blue of the sea and the green of the Mediterranean maquis, following the road that from Palinuro runs along the Cilento's coast, you reach the Pearl of Cilento.
It is easy to understand why this place has attracted and continues to attract thousands of tourists: wild nature, Mediterranean scents, jagged coastlines, coves with crystal clear waters, islets, watchtowers, caves of land and sea, rich in the mysterious charm that has its roots in prehistoric time.
The Caves of Marina di Camerota have attracted scientific interest and assumed international importance thanks to the historical finds brought to light by experts. The research has made it possible to reconstruct the changes that occurred along the coast and the activities of prehistoric man. The Neanderthal man was the first inhabitant of this magnificent territory.
From the historical centre of Marina di Camerota, which preserves intact the appearance of a fishing village, through alleys that pass under suggestive vaults and arches, you can reach the beaches, where you find out the first Palaeolithic caves. Here, we are at the home of the Neanderthal man.
Grotta della Cala
The first cave to visit, a few meters from the sea, is the Grotta della Cala. It consists of a cave front and a cave back, connected by a bottleneck.
The shape of this cave resembles an hourglass. Pebbles and bone weapons testify the presence of our Neanderthal ancestors who inhabited the cave in the Middle Paleolithic. Then the cave bequeathed to Homo Sapiens, that used the cave in a more systematic way. People lived off hunting at that time; for this reason various stone tools have been found, such as scrapers and back tips, faunal remains, sea shells used as ornaments, bone artefacts and fireplaces. The traces found on the site allow us to mentally reconstruct lifestyles of 20,000 and 40,000 years ago.
Those who choose Cilento for holidays can't miss these places where history is touched. The visit to the caves of Marina di Camerota is one of the experience for everyone, instructive for adults, fascinating and adventurous for children. A face to face with prehistory. The entire display, with mannequins reproducing cavemen in their clothing and appearance, has been designed by experts from the University of Siena, in synergy with the Superintendence of Monuments and the management of the Virtual Museum of the Palaeolithic of Camerota.
In the afternoon, when the sun is on its way to the other side of the world, it is the ideal time to visit the caves. On the promenade of Marina di Camerota, near the marina area, the time travel starts. More than a trip to the center of the earth, it is a raid, a leap in time that allows you to understand the historical beauties enclosed in this handkerchief of land where Marina di Camerota is the place from which to start discovering the caves of the coast.