Ascrea between history and beauty
St. Nicholas, the brigands and the lake
What it is and where it is
Ascrea is a small stone village firmly clinging to the side of one of the hills that plunge into Lake Turano. Ascrea sits on a fairly steep slope, and this causes the streets to be narrow, often connected by alleys and stairs, and the buildings, made strictly of stone, rise at different heights, almost as if each of them supported itself on its own rock outcrop. Walking through the village during the day makes one rethink the liveliness of a town where everyone probably knows everyone; walking through it at night gives a priceless serenity.
Why it is special
When you look at Ascrea from afar, you immediately know what its pivotal element is: the parish church of St. Nicholas of Bari. With its simple, somewhat austere façade, it rises above the bustling chaos of narrow streets and passageways and holds the heart of Ascrean spirituality thanks to a series of paintings and a fresco that have come down to us from centuries past and have been rediscovered thanks to careful restoration work.
Not to be missed
The parish church itself marks one of the most beautiful points from which to admire Lake Turano. In fact, from the alley adjacent to the Church bell tower - accessible by continuing to walk up the steps leading to the parish church from Piazza Mareri - you can enjoy one of the most evocative views of the entire Turano Valley, with an unmissable glimpse of the waters of the lake and the villages of Castel di Tora and Colle di Tora.
A bit of history
The Church is dated 1252, but the architectural reading of the structure is conditioned by the successive destructions suffered by the village. Ascrea in fact has had an eventful history. In 1440, for example, it was sold to the Mareri counts, and in the 16th century it became a refuge for brigands. To come to terms with the situation, Pope Pius V ordered the destruction of the Mareri castle in 1568, which also affected the parish church.
To make travel arrangements
Discover places and related research