Southern Italy’s untapped rugged beauty with varying degrees of mountains and valleys, long winding shorelines, and let’s not forget, some of the largest and most protected national parks and reserves in Italy, make it the perfect place to visit if you love nature and hiking.
You don’t have to be an expert to experience all this natural wonder because, like most hiking trails, you can find them with different levels of difficulty and distance.
There are so many breathtaking trails to choose from. Here’s a look at a few of our favorite hiking trails in southern Italy!
Sentiero degli Dei
Located on the Amalfi coast and known as one of Italy’s most picturesque hiking routes, the Sentiero degli Dei, literally means “Path of the Gods” and it easy to see why. This breathtaking 10km path between Praiano and Positano will leave you speechless. Some parts of these hikes will take you approximately 2,000 feet above sea level and give you the chance to see some of the most gorgeous views of the Amalfi coastline. We recommend heading out early and don’t forget to bring lots of water and sturdy shoes.
Civita: Devil’s Bridge and Raganello Valley
Civita is a charming and extremely welcoming village located in northern Calabria. Just outside of the village, there is a path which leads you to the legendary Devil’s Bridge that links the two sides of the Raganello canyon. From Civita you have access to hike down to and around this impressive gorge. If you are more adventurous, you can book a tour with a certified professional guide that will give you an unforgettable adrenaline pumping experience as you climb over rocks, through tight crevices and into the rapids.
Murgia National Park
The Murgia National Park is located next to the town of Matera in Basilicata, just a few kilometers from the border the separates Basilicata from Puglia. The park is home to cliffs, gorges, and the first cave dwellings used by prehistoric man. Mixed with its wild nature, the park is also where you’ll find the Rupestrian Churches (or rock churches). Hiking here is easy, just head over to the visitor center to get all the information you need, including the different paths available.Then it’s off to discover the park’s “hidden” treasures, like the chapel of Madonna di Monte Verde (YouTube video).
Sila National Park
Il Parco Nazionale della Sila is the largest mountain range in Calabria and is often called “the green heart of Calabria”. It’s divided into three regions – Sila Grande, Sila Piccola and Sila Greca. Within the park there are visitor centres that are well-equipped to give you information on the various nature trails available. They also offer trails that are accessible for those with different disabilities making experience with nature available to everyone. One of our favorite trails in the park starts near Parco Old Calabria at Torre Camigliati, an 18th century baron’s hunting lodge, and takes you to Croce di Magara. Croce di Magara is home to Il Fallistro, or the Giants of Sila – 56 larch pine trees dating from the Middle Ages and reaching upwards of 130 feet. They are quite remarkable!
Have you ever been on a hike during your travels? We’d love to hear all about it, let us know about your favorite hiking experiences in Italy on our Facebook page.