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the Degree Confluence Project
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Italy : Molise

near Termoli, Campobasso, Molise, Italy
Approx. altitude: 1 m (3 ft)
([?] maps: Google MapQuest Multimap world confnav)
Antipode: 42°S 165°W

Click on any of the images for the full-sized picture.

#2: GPS #3: Via Abruzzi in the modern centre of Termoli #4: Termoli's railway station #5: The Norman Castle of Termoli #6: The Port of Termoli #7: Old tower on a postcard and taken myself #8: Captain Peter at the Confluence, standing North #9: View to the East #10: View to the South

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  42°N 15°E (visit #3)  

#1: View to the West from the Confluence

(visited by Captain Peter)

13-Jul-2003 -- Travelling back home from my annual visits in Western Austria it is standard practice since many years to see my broker in Ancona and spend overnight there.

When continuing my trip to Sicily this morning I decided to visit 42N 15E. I left the Highway A14 (Bologna-Taranto) at the Exit "Termoli" and with a small printout of a "mapquest"-plan I found immediately the via Abruzzi in the largely rebuild new centre of Termoli. So I knew not to be too wrong. I parked my car and went over a bridge from where I had a look over the railway station.

From there I went directly to the Norman Castle, the most significant building of the so called "paese vecchio" (old village), the ancient centre of the town. It is of Medieval origin. During the Longobard domination Termoli belonged to the Duchy of Benevento and, later, to that of Spoleto. In Norman times it was part of the County of Loritello. The Swabian interest for the fortified city of Termoli is well documented. The castle was repeatedly damaged over the centuries (by the earthquake of 1456 and during the Turkish attack of 1567, for example). Frederick II of Swabia (1239-1247) set up an excellent defence system, though the city was probably already protected by an enceinte prior to this. According to the king's complex military project, the castle was completed, a rampart was erected and the enceinte was reorganised. Recent investigations have enabled the identification, within the castle, of a central nucleus (a donjon?) incorporated in more recent structures, and along the walls, of the remains of the gate structure with a steeply escarped wall (like the castle and keep), as well as traces of houses built against the enceinte. The castle stands on a frustum of pyramid base, and this is not very common. The hypothesis that the four corner towers represent an addition made after the post-earthquake works of 1456 cannot be excluded. Of the functional elements, traces of the waterworks, service galleries, the drawbridge mechanism and residential rooms are still visible. The military elements consist in a rich case history of arrow slits, which have often been adapted to more recent functions.

From the Castle it is only a few steps down to the Port of Termoli, which I could anyway not miss. The typical smell of a mixture of gasoil and rotten fish, so common in summertime in Mediterranean ports is inequivocable. When walking down to the Port I passed a beautiful tower, being as well an attraction there, as the postcard prooves. It is part of the old fortification of the town.

At the port I paid a visit to the Coast Guard first, and then I walked a two hundred metres South to the Confluence, which is about 10 metres inshore from the coastline.

Another shots have been taken to the North, to the East and to the South.

The beach there is not very exciting. It is the so called "zona libera", that means in other words: open to everybody due to not good enough for the guests of the expensive hotels.

The Italian Region of Molise, which came into being only in 1964 and is the second smallest of Italy (after Valle d'Aosta). Molise is quite mountainous. It is a region of emigration, scarcely populated and is not playing a very important role in the Italian Republic. Agriculture there is strictly traditional, industry is rare.

After this visit I continued my trip home, where I arrived after a nine hours drive.


 All pictures
#1: View to the West from the Confluence
#2: GPS
#3: Via Abruzzi in the modern centre of Termoli
#4: Termoli's railway station
#5: The Norman Castle of Termoli
#6: The Port of Termoli
#7: Old tower on a postcard and taken myself
#8: Captain Peter at the Confluence, standing North
#9: View to the East
#10: View to the South
ALL: All pictures on one page (broadband access recommended)
  Notes
On the sand of the beach, only about 30 m from the seaside.