The little bucolic village of Decontra sits up high on the cliff edges of the Orfento Gorge, 810 masl in the Maiella Mountains, its pastoral tranquility overlooks the spa town of Caramanico in the province of Pescara. Decontra has some of the of the most incredible mountain vistas from a Pescara mountain village so it’s really worth making a visit, especially if you like walking in Abruzzo.
Truly rustic, the residents’ income was originally solely reliant on what they produced on their high terraces, the village was cut off from the world until the 1970s, a decade when both a road and electricity were introduced to the village. There’s a wide choice of footpaths for all levels including me, not the fittest rambler in the world, in a similar way to Campo Imperatore, the colours and rocky lunar-like boughs really reminded me of walks up there.
For those that like visiting hermitages, there is the nearby medieval hermitage of San Bartolomeo, which I’ll have to leave for another day as at 1630 the light was fading and it’s traditionally cut into one of the cliff-sides. The low light made a great car-journey back down, looking out to the Gran Sasso and the Corno Grande in the distance, and watching the limestone of the 2793m peak Amaro, Abruzzo’s second largest mountain, turn pink under its November snow-skull cap.