ASCA – Bioagriturismo LA PORTA DEI PARCHI is a cooperative society set in Anversa degli Abruzzi, a small town in the pronvince of L’Aquila (700 m above sea level). The headquarters are composed of two parts: the original agricultural and zootechnical premises (referring to ASCA Cooperative), which comprise: sheepfold, dairy, point of sale, hayloft, warehouses, offices, garage, tool shed. The second part concerns our tourism premises, according to the concept of “bioagriturismo”, i.e. organic farming plus farm hous holidays. On this side of our properties, you will find a food court, rooms with bathroom, flats, lecture hall for didactic moments. During the year, the main activity is cheese production and cattle-breeding.
Our society was first set in 1977, following the idea to redevelop a mountain area at risk of depopulation. Redevelopment was to be achieved through innovation applied to traditional agricultural production. During the decades, our company has reached the result of a model which today is widely imitated in Italy and abroad.
Set within a breathtaking landscape, our company lies in a strategic position to the various Abruzzi’s Natural Parks. We can thus offer a wide range of (guided) excursions: excursions by car/bike/horse and hikes. We also offer demonstrations and courses about: organic farming, cheese making, officinal plants, natural feeding, typical (non-GMO) products and so on. Bedrooms and flats for our guests are located in a farmhouse recently built with country style and set in a mountain area with an amazing view over the “Gorges of Sagittarius” (Gole del Sagittario), in front of the striking beauty of the Maiella mountain range. All the premises were built during the 70’s right outside the medieval town of Anversa degli Abruzzi, which is today listed among the “Borghi più belli d’Italia” (a publicly recognized selection of Italian most beautiful ancient towns). The place is set at the heart of the gorgeus Abruzzi Natural Reserve, rich with its wonderful water sources that poet Gabriele d’Annunzio mentioned in his work “La Fiaccola sotto il Moggio” (The Light under the Bushel). For this reason, the old town is also the venue of a Literary Park, devoted to the D’Annunzio.
We can welcome our guests in rooms or flats set in the premises of our company, but it is also possible to find accommodation in the medieval centre of the old town, according to the formula known as “albergo diffuso” (scattered hotel). The guests who opt for this formula will be accommodated in our partner’s houses and will enjoy the enchanted atmosphere of an old village made of small lanes.
Both formulas may be combined with different types of accommodation: bed&breakfast, half board or full board. Meals are served at our food court, set in a rural building we created in the 90’s with a view to give our guests a specific environnment to taste our natural organic products (in addition to the products of many patner societies).
For those who love trekking, we are at the very heart of Abruzzi Natural Parks. This means, the possibility to move freely over 1000 meters above sea level, almost reaching 3000 metres on the peak of Gran Sasso. Likewise, strolling along the old cattle-tracks of transumanza (“transhumance”) is an amazing journey through pristine environnments, such as the three great plateaux lying within the province of L’Aquila. Just a few small villages break the landscape of these highlands, where time seems to have stopped long ago.
Last but not the least… Do not miss a visit to our lakes, castles and hermitages! The historic plenty of our mountains is a continuous surprise. From medieval towns to old sheepfolds and cattle-tracks it is still possible here to esperience the rythm of nature. This is -after all- the legacy of the shepherd traditions that have fed this territory, from Maiella to Camosciara, the core of Abruzzi Natural Park, i.e. the oldes natural park in Italy, the “reign” of local species like the brown bear (Orso Bruno Marsicano), the chamois (Camoscio d’Abruzzo) and the legendary wolf of the Appennines (Lupo Appenninico).