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Discovering the Ancient Route: A Spiritual and Natural Journey Between Basilicata and Calabria

Embarking on a journey through the heart of Southern Italy, the “Ancient Route Madonna del Pollino” emerges as a path not just through landscapes, but through time, culture, and spirituality. Straddling the regions of Basilicata and Calabria, this route has, for centuries, been a testament to the enduring bond between man, nature, and the divine. It beckons travelers seeking not just beauty, but also a deeper connection with the world around them.

Ancient Route Madonna del Pollino: the map
Ancient Route Madonna del Pollino: the map

A Sanctuary Amidst the Clouds

At the core of this journey is the Sanctuary of the Madonna del Pollino, nestled in Mezzana, a quaint hamlet of San Severino Lucano in Basilicata, soaring at 1537 meters above sea level. This sacred site has historically united the people from the Calabrian and Lucanian sides of the mountain, especially during the feast of the Madonna del Pollino. It stands as a beacon of faith, offering solace and a sense of belonging to those who make the pilgrimage.

Sanctuary of the Madonna del Pollino
Sanctuary of the Madonna del Pollino


A Tapestry of Villages, Nature, and History

The route unfolds across eight picturesque villages, creating a vivid mosaic of experiences from the Ionian Sea’s azure coasts to the majestic peaks of the Pollino massif. It’s a journey measured not in miles but in “kilometers of songs and prayers“, a testament to the deep-rooted spirituality and cultural heritage of the region.

Travelers are invited to immerse themselves in an evocative experience, where every step taken is an opportunity to dissolve the burdens of the heart and to embrace the longing for goodness and beauty. It’s a chance to be enveloped in the tranquility of nature, the richness of history, and the profound sense of religious devotion that permeates the landscape.

The Scenic Wonders of Mount Pollino

The Ancient Route offers unparalleled scenic beauty, with the Pollino massif serving as the dramatic backdrop to this spiritual voyage. As the highest mountain chain in the southern Apennines, it boasts peaks that touch the skies, from Serra Crispo (2053 m) to the towering Serra Dolcedorme (2266 m). Each step along the way is accompanied by breathtaking vistas, from the kaleidoscopic sunrises and sunsets to the soothing melodies of the mountain’s waterways and springs. These natural wonders not only enhance the journey but also enrich the soul.


A Journey for All

Whether on foot or by bicycle, the Ancient Route Madonna del Pollino is accessible to all who wish to undertake this journey. It’s an invitation to explore, reflect, and discover the wonders of Mount Pollino, the charm of its villages, and the spiritual solace found at the Madonna del Pollino Sanctuary. This route is more than a pilgrimage; it’s an adventure through the heart of Southern Italy, offering a unique blend of natural beauty, historical depth, and spiritual enlightenment.

In embarking on this ancient route, travelers are offered a rare opportunity to connect with the past, embrace the present, and look forward to the future with a renewed sense of purpose and wonder. It’s a journey that promises not just memories, but transformations, inspiring all who traverse its paths to seek and find the goodness and beauty that lies in the world and within themselves.

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