No Warnings and notice
Ovindoli (Dvinnërë in the Abruzzo dialect) is a municipality in the Abruzzo region with about 1,200 inhabitants of the province of L’Aquila and it is situated at a height of 1,375 m above sea level. Ovindoli is the gateway to the south of the Sirente-Velino plateau, which separates the Velino and Sirente massifs, inside the beautiful regional Park of the same name. As regards the etymology of its name, some opt for Obinolum, believing it derives from Ovis due to the pastoral activities that were carried out here since ancient times or from Ovatio (Triumph) as the Marsi used to praise their victors among the Ovindoli mountains. Even if the origin of its name is not certain, the popular motto is, in fact, known and shared by everyone: dvinnr fatt a pnnei piu’ i rmir i più é bei. (Ovindoli is perfectly made, the more you admire it, the more beautiful it seems). Historically, the key driver of the Ovindoli economy was the pastoralism until the 1970s when Ovindoli developed not only summer tourism but especially winter tourism, with the ski runs on the slopes of Mount Magnola and over time, it has become one of the most popular skiing resorts on a national scale, only 35 Km from L’Aquila, 100 km from Rome and Pescara. The summer period emphases the particularity of this pleasant hamlet situated in the central Apennines. Uncontaminated nature, high air, water and soil quality, water make Ovindoli both the natural destination for tourists coming from the nearby cities: Rome, Naples, Perugia, Florence, but also Bari and Lecce. Peacefully strolling among the fields and woodlands, using either the bike or a horse to move around freely for example to reach the Arano valley, which is considered one of the most beautiful valleys in the Centre-South of Italy. Yet Ovindoli is to be enjoyed also in Spring and Autumn, periods in which you can appreciate the tranquillity and authenticity of the location by going for a stroll or a horse ride, in search of forest fruits or prized varieties of mushrooms or truffles, by admiring the beauty and varieties of the local flora and fauna, the heart and driving force of the internal Abruzzo areas and to discover the remains of the well-preserved Roman and Medieval civilisations, especially in the hamlets of St.Potito and St. Iona.
This is a hamlet of Ovindoli which can be found on the road that links Forme and Ovindoli passing through Fonte Capo la Maina. Apart from the remarkable historic-artistic heritage, worthy of note is the fabulous Medieval Tower; over recent years, a wide-ranging, complete tourist offer is steadily developing which consists of top quality “Agriturismi” (farm holidays), riding stables, restaurants and parties that attract many tourists from Ovindoli and elsewhere.
St. Potito is situated on the slopes of Mount Pizzo in Ovindoli. A delightful town with a wealth of history and legends which rises on a rocky mass that slopes down to the valley below. It can be found on the road that from Celano goes up towards Ovindoli. The enchanting houses that you can see also from the roadside create the marvellous surroundings to a magnificent landscape with the waterfall of St. Potito and a touch of history that, apart from the Medieval Castle, has recently been enriched by the archaeological excavations that have revealed a Roman villa dating back to the I century A.D.
16th century home in Piazza St. Rocco
Palazzo Rinaldi is a 16th century building overlooking the main square in Ovindoli, piazza St. Rocco.
There are the remains of a Medieval hamlet in the historical town centre of Ovindoli represented above all by the Gothic arch gateway called Porta Mutiati close to the Palazzo of the legendary “Re Zappone” (King Zappone).
St. Sebastian’s Church – 15th – 16th centuries
The original church was rebuilt following the earthquake in 1915.
Currently, the church hosts a polychrome terracotta statue of the enthroned Virgin Mary adoring the Child created at a time when He should have been on her lap and one of St. Sebastian in gilt stucco, 2.30 m tall dating back to the 17th century. Among the sacred ornaments, the following are worthy of note: the embossed gilt silver processional cross portraying the crucifix with the Eternal, the Virgin Mary, St. John and the skull while on the underside , there is the Saviour with the four Evangelists coming from Sulmona school and it dates back to the 15th century.
Then there are six brass candelabras, a gilt copper pax with the Madonna and the Dead Christ upon her lap as well as the Magdalene and several other sacred ornaments.
Imperial Roman Villa - St. Potito
These are the excavations of a Roman Villa dating back to about the 1st century A.D. that could have been the summer residence of Patricians and Roman emperors as can be seen from the discovery of mosaics, frescoes, floorings, tombs and coins of the Emperor Hadrian which have come to light probably after the draining of Lake Fucino. The Villa probably belonged to Lucio Vero, brother of Marcus Aurelius, and it was used up to the end of the 3rd century. In Medieval times, the same was transformed into an ecclesiastical building the remains of which have been found. The most important artefacts have been catalogued and kept in the Parish church of St. Potito.
Medieval Castle - Castellum Sancti Potiti
In the highest part of the hamlet, there is the Medieval Castle (which also belonged to the Counts Berardi) linked to a small hamlet, now abandoned. Both date back to the 11th century A.D. Moreover, today remains of a larger building, probably a noble residence can still be seen.
The Church of St. Potito
An embossed silver and copper processional cross dating back to the 16th century is kept in the church of St. Potito.
The Church of Our Lady of the Snow (Madonna della Neve) – St. Potito
On the edge of the town walls, there are the remains of another religious building, the final construction stage of which dates back to the 15th century. Inside the present day town, situated along the state road, there is the church of the "Madonna della Neve" (Our Lady of the Snow) a small building on several levels the interior of which is embellished by suggestive decorative frescoes dating back to the 16th century.
The Church of St. Eugenia –San Iona –San Potito
Inside the church dedicated to St. Eugenia there is a Madonna and Child, a processional cross and sacred ornaments.
Hamlet and Medieval Tower – San Iona
In the ancient hamlet there are still wide stretches of the wall, characterised by doors, corner towers and slits which can still be seen. In the old town centre, with breath-taking views, there are also the remains of the mother church, built in a Medieval style which collapsed following the 1915 earthquake. Within the context of the defence system of the Marsica area, the watch tower in San Iona was introduced as a connection point between the castle in St. Potito and that in Celano. The tower was built in the 13th century by the Counts in Celano on a hill around which the historic town centre was established. It is a circular plan isolated tower built on a rocky bank made of two overlapping environments: the lower one has a circular plan covered by a hemispherical stone vault with a lookout hole, framed by ashlar stone at the top and the upper level was used as a guard house and has an octagonal plan.
Ovindoli - The square
Il paese - The square
Ovindoli - Old town
Winter sports resort Ovindoli Mount Magnola
Ovindoli - Old town
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