Friday, 23 March 2012

Serramonacesca: Castles & Towers

Torre Polegra & Castel Menardo

The Castel and the Torre of Serramonacesca were founded in the XII and XVI centuries and are of Longobardo origin.  Both were built with the task of defending Serra's Abbey of San Liberatore a Majella.  
Castel Menardo

Stunning views from the Castel, a prime spot for defending the Abbey

Little is known of their history, but it doesn’t appear as though the Castel’s life was long, probably dismantled by Charles of Anjou after the battle of Campi Palenti in 1268.  

There is scant information on when the Torre was abandoned, but the dominant theory is that, in the 1400’s, a ferocious plague had decimated the population of the Torre and surrounds, forcing the monks of the San Liberatore to advise the survivors to take refuge in nearby Serramonacesca.
Torre Polegra

Both the Castel and the Torre are only accessible by foot, but both are very beautiful walks and well worth the effort.  The Torre can be reached from the road through our hamlet of Garifoli, and the Castel from Serramonacesca itself.

Torre Polegra amongst the trees, with the skiing of Passo Lanciano beyond
A beautiful walk, particularly in the spring

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