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The natural scenery of the high and inaccessible peaks of Gran Sasso, Monti della Laga and Majella then descends towards a wide hilly system, to finally reach the Adriatic coast.
The journey from Gran Sasso to the sea crosses areas rich in history, traditions and artistic testimonies that never cease to amaze visitors.Between the mountains and the hills, narrow valleys and natural historical paths are wedged, including the scenic and evocative Aterno Valley, dotted with ancient villages.
There are numerous nature reserves such as the Abruzzo National Park, Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga Park or the Majella Park, which provide protection to plant and animal species typical of the area, such as the golden eagle, the wolf and the Marsican bear. Abruzzo's coast is characterized by long and sandy beaches in the northern part, while to the south the pebble beaches prevail.
The small villages of the hinterland, the monasteries, the castles of the region that are so many different visit routes in the greenest region of Italy are full of charm.
Abruzzo has a rich gastronomic tradition, with specific traditions, linked to individual provinces. Sovereigns on the table are the maccheroni alla chitarra, homemade pasta, cut with a frame with steel wires; typical of Teramo are the scrippelle, thin sheets of pasta in broth and all the soups with legumes. On the coast dominate the first courses based on fish, often seasoned with tomatoes to enhance the taste of the "poor fish" that is caught in the sea in front of ancient marine localities. Among the second, typical recipe of Chieti is the scapece, fried fish preserved in vinegar. Equally so is the stew or "fish soup" which is consumed mainly in coastal centers and, revisited, in the areas of Teramo.
However, the genuine meat of the Abruzzi mountains, especially in Teramo and L'Aquila, is traditionally dedicated to sheep farming. However, everywhere in Abruzzo abound the menus based on lamb, kid, sheep. Salami, like ham, loin and ventricina, are the main dish of the mountain areas.
The typical Abruzzese meal is washed down with a selection of the best regional DOC and IGT wines. Montepulciano d'Abruzzo, Sangiovese and Trebbiano d'Abruzzo over time have conquered the national and international market for the care of their production and the excellent relationship between quality and price. There are many organic wine productions especially in Chieti's area and in Teramo's area.
Among the desserts, often based on almonds and honey, stand out the nougats, the famous ones of L'Aquila, the confetti, specialty of Sulmona, and the cicerchiata, small balls of fried dough covered with honey, but also the mostaccioli and the renowned bocconotto , typical of the Chieti area.