photo © Louise Shapcott
Campoli is a small mountain town in the province of Frosinone, which has part of its territory within the National Park of Abruzzo Lazio and Molise. The village is perched at a height of 650 metres above sea level, on the edge of a huge karst doline (or sinkhole) locally called Fossa or Tomolo and is completely separated from the surrounding hills.
The village is semicircular in shape and arranged around the edge of the doline. It has wonderful panoramic views overlooking the Valle del Liri, the Valle di Roveto and the Val di Comino and the scenic backdrop of Monte La Rocca (1.925 m).
The name of Campoli is derived from a diminutive of the latin word campulus (meaning earth or field) which indicated that the land was able to be cultivated. The name Appennino was not added until 1863. It’s population currently numbers approximately 1,800 and its inhabitants are known as Campolesi.
The Medieval Tower
The Medieval Tower, built of local stone, still dominates the town. The tower measures 25 metres in height and as well as being a defensive stronghold and an observation point, it was a symbol of power. The structure has a truncated conical base and the walls are of considerable thickness there is a spiral staircase, which reaches up to three quarters of the height of the tower. A rampant lion is carved on a stone above the first window, a symbol of the Cantelmo family. Originally the tower was connected to the ducal palace through a raised passage. During the last century the tower was used as a water tank. The tower is now used as a small museum named the “Torritorio” and is open to the public with guided tours during special events. Note – areas of the town walls are still clearly visible today around the historic centre.
The Medieval historic centre, with the ancient tower at its core is made up of a network of cobbled alleyways. Some of the town walls and watch towers have been incorporated into houses over the centuries. In the main square there is the town hall or comune. There is also a wonderful terrace looking down over the karst doline named the “Tomolo” and the natural park of the Bear Sanctuary.
Photos – A Tour Around the Town of Campoli Appenino
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Last Updated Nov 2018