The Cammino di Celestino takes you from picturesque Sulmona to the enchanting Abbey of San Liberatore in Serramonacesca, through the striking Majella National Park in Abruzzo. Over 100 kilometres (62 mi) and six stages, this walk immerses you in the spectacular Majella and Morrone mountains, passing through dense forests and deep valleys. The hermitages and abbeys you encounter along the way are charged with history, art, and evocative beauty.
The trek takes its name from the humble hermit Pietro da Morrone, who became Pope Celestine V at the end of the 13th century. The hike follows the paths that Pietro walked to reach the hermitages.
The highlights are the spectacular natural beauty of the park, at times wild and majestic, and the impressive hermitages, such as the hermitage of San Giovanni, located at 1,227 metres (4,026 ft) in the Orfento Valley. You reach the hermitage via a stairway and a narrow 15-metre (49 ft) horizontal ledge, so take care while admiring the surrounding panorama.
It's important to emphasise that the Cammino di Celestino requires some hiking experience and good training as it passes through high mountains.
As for the best time to hike, pring and autumn are the ideal seasons to fully enjoy the natural wonders of the Majella. I recommend avoiding the winter months when weather conditions can make the route difficult or even inaccessible.
Each stage ends in a village offering accommodation such as agriTourisms or B&Bs. Agritourism is a new type of agriculturally-based accommodation. You can also spend the night in a tent along the trails by requesting a free permit from the park in advance. Some overnight facilities also offer special areas for pitching your tent, as well as services such as showers and toilets. However, bear in mind that opportunities to buy food supplies along the trail are limited. I recommend buying the necessary supplies for the next day at the end of each stage. In addition, you'll find several drinking fountains along the route to fill up with water, but make sure your water bottles are full at the start and finish points of each stage too.
The complete route follows the official camino, which starts at the Badia Morronese in Sulmona and ends at the Abbazia di San Liberatore in Serramonacesca. In the first and last stages, I've extended the route to connect with nearby stations to make your journey more accessible. The best way to reach Sulmona is by train. For the return journey, you can use TUA buses from Serramonacesca to Scafa, Chieti Scalo, or Pescara, where you can take the train back to Sulmona.
Get ready for an unforgettable experience on the Cammino di Celestino, where unspoilt nature and millenary history come together in the heart of Abruzzo. Enjoy this unique adventure!
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Last updated: July 20, 2023
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The first stage of the Cammino di Celestino offers a relatively easy experience and allows you to explore the suggestive city of Sulmona and then reach the hamlet of Badia and subsequently Pacentro. Pacentro is a wonderful village of medieval origin, dominated by the Caldora Castle, and is considered…
The second stage of the Cammino di Celestino consists of a panoramic and pleasant, but not short, route that will take you from the Peligna Valley to the Orta Valley, bypassing the Morrone massif through the San Leonardo Pass and immersing you in the heart of the Majella. Like Pacentro, Caramanico Terme…
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The third stage of the Cammino di Celestino from Caramanico Terme to Decontra is characterized by the climb along the valley of the Orfento river up to the Pietra bridge, passing through the hermitage of Sant'Onofrio and ending in the charming village of Decontra. During this route, you will walk first…
You are halfway through the adventure! This stage of the Celestine Way goes from Decontra to Fonte Tettone. The first part of the excursion takes place on grassy ground, while the descent to the Hermitage of San Giovanni takes place through a beech forest with a stretch on rock stairs. From here, you…
The fifth stage of the Cammino di Celestino, which begins at Fonte Tettone and ends at Macchie di Coco, will lead you to discover a wooded and open area, once dedicated to agriculture and grazing. Through the suggestive Vallone di Santo Spirito, you will reach the Hermitage of San Bartolomeo, another…
The last stage of the Cammino di Celestino is not difficult and develops in the northern part of the Park. It has short uphill stretches alternating with comfortable descents.
Leaving Coco Spots behind, at the beginning of the route you will walk along a paved road until you reach a col, where you will…
Hiking Collection by komoot
Hiking Collection by komoot
Hiking Collection by Philipp Hesse
Mountain Biking Collection by Rüdesheim