We were in Sulmona in between our Adventures in Italy trips. There is a lot to like about this city in Abruzzo. One is the passeggiata, what we think is the best we’ve experienced. Certainly that is a subjective assessment. How do you decide which is best? Here’s what we like.
- It has just the right number of people. Some passeggiata’s are too crowded, some feel empty. This one feels perfect in terms of numbers, even on the busier than normal weekend.
- There is a great mix of age groups. Many passeggiata’s tend toward the elderly side. Not here. In fact, Sulmona is one of the youngest feeling cities we’ve been in. There are pre-teens, teens, people in their 20’s and thirties and on up. Some walk briskly, others stroll. Doesn’t matter the age group
- It is local. This is a less touristy part of Italy and nearly everybody is local. That lends a very real feel.
- The spaces are great. Some passeggiatas are cramped, some are too open. Here, Corso Ovidio and its several piazzas are just the right dimensions. You can’t control that of course. They are lucky enough to have good dimensions, and maybe that is partly why it is so successful.
The passeggiata is one of he things we adore about Italy. It is heart warming to see people coming together every night for a few hours of socializing. Imagine in the U.S. if at 5:00 or 6:00 we turned off the TV and computer, put down what we were doing just to go out onto the street to walk, get a little exercise and talk to folks. Imagine doing that every night just because it was important to you and made you feel alive and connected! I think it is hard for Americans to even imagine such a thing.
Sulmona reminds us of Aspen before it became a big resort town. Mountains are in its backyard. The views are stunning. There is skiing within 30 minutes.
The food is excellent. We will say their coffee and gelato do not measure up to some other cities. Hey, you can’t have everything. Ciao di Sulmona!