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Gargano national park

The park

 

The Gargano national park is a nature reserve located on the Gargano promontory in the province of Foggia and managed by the National park of Gargano based in Monte Sant'Angelo.

Gargano is an area consisting predominantly of sedimentary rocks, limestones and large sinkholes called 'Doline'. The most interesting of these sinkholes is the one called Pozzatina, which is the largest in Europe with a depth of over 100 meters and a diameter of about 500 metres.

The Gargano national park is also characterised by a large number of caves. Many of this caves were created by sea erosion and already inhabited during the Paleolithic period.

The Gargano national park consists of forests, Mediterranean vegetation, valleys, lakes and steppe plains. The forests are mainly located in the central and western part of the Gargano, while the Mediterranean vegetation extends more in the north and east part of the Gargano.

The most important part of the Gargano national park is the Umbra Forest, located in the middle of the park. It is a lush forest full of different species of trees and shrubs.

Important are also the wetlands, like Lago di Lesina and Lago di Varano, the swamps, such as Fratarolo, Sfinale and the lake area of Sant'Egidio. Very beautiful and interesting are the springs and water stagnation, stop off places for many species of birds.

Wild animals that can be found in the park include deer, woodpeckers, badgers, foxes,
martens, squirrels and wild cats.

Part of the Park of Gargano are also the Tremiti islands, located at about 22 km from the Gargano coast and consisting of three main islands: San Domino, San Nicola and Capraia.

 

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Excursions

Grande Traversata Garganica (GTG) - Great Crossing of the Gargano

This long path allows you to discover different areas of the park and the municipalities of which they are part. It is a pedestrian, cycling and equestrian route of about 200 km in length.

I percorsi di Gargano Bike (Cagnano) - Bike path of the Gargano

All routes of the Great Crossing of the Gargano can be travelled by bike. Bikes can be rented at various locations including the Umbra Forest and the visitor centres of the park.

I sentieri del versante occidentale (San Giovanni Rotondo) - Paths of the west

These paths go through the western part of the Gargano promontory.

I sentieri della costa - Paths of the coast

These paths are, all located around the town of Mattinata: -

- Route Mergoli. This is a 2 km walk with a visit of the pine forests and arrival at Vignanotica Beach.

- Route Monte Saraceno. This is a 4 km walk on Monte Saraceno with arrival to Mattinata beach.

- Routes del bosco. These two paths, one of 11.5 km and the other of 4 km, are organised by the park in collaboration with the town of Lesina.

- Route Oasi Lago Salso. This is a 5 km path ideal for bird-watching inside the oasis of Lago Salso.

- Route Tremiti. This is a 3 km path on the island of San Domino, around Colle dell'Eremita with arrival to some coves and beaches.

The paths of Foresta Umbra

Near the town of Monte Sant'Angelo, the Corpo Forestale has provided the forest with areas for picnics. From these areas is possible to start some walking trips inside the Foresta Umbra, following some predefined paths. Each path is described on the boards located at the picnic areas.

The network of cycle routes

Different cycling routes are available throughout the territory of the park. The full cycling path has a length of approximately 350 km. These routes are also connected to the main roads and the Gargano rail network.

The Pilgrims Route

The Pilgrims Route is a path of about 40 km from Vieste to Monte Sant'Angelo. It is divided into steps that can be walked separately.

 

Info centre Gargano national park

  • Monte Sant'Angelo
    Largo Roberto il Guiscardo
    Castello Normanno-Svevo-Aragonese
    Cooperativa Ecogargano

    San Marco in Lamis
    Fraz. Borgo Celano snc
    Centro visita su Carsismo - Borgo Celano
    Gruppo

    San Nicandro Garganico
    Strada Provinciale 41
    Centro Visita Torre Mileto
    Penelope-Argod

    Manfredonia
    Strada Provinciale 159
    Centro Visita Oasi Lago Salso
    WWF

    Lesina
    Via Banchina Vollaro 147
    Laguna, turismo e natura
    Amici della Laguna di Lesina

Telephone: +39 0884 565 444
Website: www.ecogargano.it