Italyupdate opens this year with a new feature. Periodically, we shall be concentrating on lesser known areas of Italy that are anxious to encourage international visitors. These features will take the form of a panoramic tour of the region or province involved, where we report on the main art cities, monuments, festivals, gastronomic specialities and general attractions. All the places described have been visited personally by our correspondent.


Our first Special concentrates on what is possibly Italys least known region of Molise. Molise, in fact, only became a separate region in 1963. Before that, it was considered part of Abruzzo, its neighbour. Sandwiched between the four regions of Abruzzo, Lazio, Campania and Puglia, Molise also has its own bit of coast on the Adriatic sea, so it can offer many different kinds of holiday, ranging from ski resorts to sun-and-sand, mountain trekking to quiet farm stays, exclusive wine tours and local food tastings, or all-the-fun-of-the-fair at some of the many colourful feasts and festivals that punctuate the calendar.


What I didnt know about Molise:

 Some of the best truffles come from here, only they all go up to the famous annual Alba truffle fair and are passed off as Alba-produced truffles. In 2009, the massive truffle that fetched the price of $200,000 in the Alba auction actually came from Molise.


Molise's Special Qualities:


 With a total of some 300,000 inhabitants, Molise is one of Italy's least populated regions. Largely mountainous and rural, there are plenty of wide, open spaces, unpolluted air and all the peace and quiet it is becoming increasingly difficult to find in our busy, modern lives.  Bordering on the National Park of Abruzzo, it shares much of the park's rich variety of wildlife, including wolves, wild boar, deer, eagles and other birds of prey. Having been so much of a backwater, Molise has been spared the tasteless building developments and industrial spreads that have blotted the beauties of many other Italian regions and most of its towns and villages have preserved their air of old world charm. Tradition is still firmly rooted here and foreigners will be fascinated by many of the unique and age-old customs and festivals. Local food production is a source of pride and you can visit many of the cottage industries that produce top-quality gastronomic specialities. Shrinking populations is a big problem in many of the charming, historic old villages and many local councils are keen to encourage the purchase of old properties to be converted into holiday or retirement homes for foreigners. House prices are low and, since Molise is still undiscovered, this would be the time to find a bargain retreat in an authentic Italian village.  


Posted on 05 Jan 2010 by Editor

With every good wish for a serene Christmas holiday 

and a  prosperous 2010 .

The writers and staff of ..



Posted on 23 Dec 2009 by Editor

Arsita, Valfino al Canto, 11 agosto, suoni valle del Vomano - TG ...

The small Abruzzo town of Arsita (near Teramo), which was badly hit in the earthquake of April 2009, received a magnificent Christmas gift from the British bookmaker Stanley International Betting Ltd in the form of a brand new state-of-the-art primary school. ..

Posted on 22 Dec 2009 by Editor

Italian  Christmas gastronomic specialities are making a hit abroad, according to latest export figures published by Federalimentare (the Italian food producers federation).

Posted on 21 Dec 2009 by Editor

On the 18 th December 2009, the town of Assisi (Umbria) will host a meeting of over 20 small Italian towns to discuss the development of Alberghi diffusi in the various Italian regions.

Posted on 18 Dec 2009 by Editor

Civita d'Antino

Abruzzo writer and researcher Antonio Bini got a warm reception at the Danish Academy, Rome, when he presented his book The Italian Dream of Kristian Zahrtmann, documenting the story of the Scandinavian artists colony that lived in Civita D'Antino, near Avezzano (Abruzzo),  at the end of the 19 th and  early 20 th century. 

Posted on 15 Dec 2009 by Editor

Hurrah for the humble Neapolitan pizza! Italys most famous and ubiquitous gastronomic delight has now received official EU recognition as a Guaranteed Traditional Speciality.

Posted on 14 Dec 2009 by Editor

After a series of tests have been completed, scientists hope to be able to announce the finding of the lost Caravaggio. ...

Posted on 11 Dec 2009 by Editor

The Association Patriarchs of Nature in Italy has catalogued over 5000 ancient trees, familiarly known as atriarchs, growing on Italian soil....

Posted on 06 Dec 2009 by Editor

Il Giacchè di Casale Cento Corvi alla prova del tempo, di Andrea ...

The Cento Corvi wine estate of Cerveteri (Lazio) was recently given a special nomination by the Gruppo del Gusto (Gourmet Group) of the foreign press in Italy for reviving the ancient wine-making traditions of the Etruscans....

Posted on 02 Dec 2009 by Editor

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