Santa Croce, Puglia, Italy (National Park of Gargano)

Hi all! 

I hope you all had a good Easter break. Apologies for the brief lull in posts, but I do, thankfully, have a life. This past Easter weekend was full of engaging projects, trips and to do lists that all got done. Don't you love it when you have time to relax and be productive? It's an incredible feeling. Anyway, I want to share with you a hike that my husband and I, recently, took in the National Park of Gargano. I love this place. It has forests, campsites, beautiful beaches and cool little towns; and if you're religious and like to take religious pilgrimages, it's near the famous, Padre Pio. 

Hiking in Santa Croce located in the 
National Park of Gargano.

I don't have to tell you that Italy is a beautiful country. It's a small country that is filled with diverse backgrounds, buildings, architecture and people. The most famous areas are Tuscany, the Amalfi Coast, the lake district made famous by George Clooney and other celebrities, and the main tourists cities of Rome, Venice, Milan, Naples, Florence and Pisa, etc. 

I'm fortunate to live in an area where there are less tourists than in other parts of Italy. I live in a region called Puglia and there are so many amazing things to see and visit here. Many of which, I am excited to share with you in future posts. Puglia is dramatically different from other regions of Italy in its background, history and architecture. 

My husband and I went on a leisurely hike of a couple hours in Santa Croce which was recommend to us by our dear friends. It's difficult to find, but once you get there, it's fairly easy to navigate. I want to share with you photos of our hike. It's a fairly easy hike of a couple hours...anyone can do it. The trail is marked in certain places, but you have to be careful because it sometimes tapers off. The hike is filled with pleasurable sights of cows sitting in neighbouring pastures, unusual flora and fauna and the unusual rocks. Some of it reminded me of Ireland. But the amazing thing was waiting for us at the top of the mountain. Ruins of an old Abbey.   

Cows are everywhere around here. So, watch out for the cow poo.

A lot of the hiking surface looks like this. 
It's incredible. It looks like the surface of the moon. 

I love how cows completely ignore people. My husband really wanted a cow bell to take home, but neither of us were courageous enough to get close to a cow. 

Isn't this tree fabulous? I absolutely love taking photos of nature.

Little flowers like these dotted the hillside. 

A peek of the old Abbey.

The highlight of the hike were the ruins of an old Abbey. I looked for information about it, but I couldn't find anything. I'm sure it goes back many centuries. It's like stumbling on an archaeological site. We felt like Indiana Jones discovering a new place....although, there was another family there hiking as well. So, we weren't alone. 

 Inside a part of the Abbey.

A view of the top.

 I pretended for a moment and imagined that I was back in time and I was Guinevere or something like that. Do you ever do that?

The other family we met hiking found a skull of a cow's head and took it home. 

"What are you looking at?"

As we drove away, we passed horses and donkeys that were 'soooooooo' not interested in us.


  1. Looks lovely Reese!

    Is the weather nice there now? I'd love to pack a great little lunch with cheese and bread and fruit and walk along and snack.

    You're lucky to live there!

  2. Italy is so beautiful! I really want to travel there someday!

    I can't believe this is one hike-- Incredible! The nature, the views, the wildlife.. what a dream location to spend an afternoon!

    Thanks for sharing.. I hope you're having a great week! xoxo

  3. Thanks guys! I do try and appreciate the life here. I'm cognizant of how fortunate I am. However, I've discovered that being here on holiday is so incredibly different from living here. There are so many adjustments that I've had to make, especially culturally. Also, I meet so many dissatisfied Italians that tell me how much they want to move to America or Britain or some other part of western Europe that I wonder.......

    Thanks and wishing you lots of warm and happy wishes in your part of the world.



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