It is a town in the province of L'Aquila, located in National Park of the Majella, on the slopes of the mountains of the Morrone, at the mouth of the Valley of Peligna. Although inhabited since ancient times, the village was mentioned for the first time in a deed of the VIII century, in which the Dukes of Spoleto donated the church of Sancti Leopardo in Pacentru to the Monastery of San Vincenzo al Volturno. In the X century, the inhabitants fortified the town and started the construction of the first core of the castle, to defend the population from the continuous raids of the Normans and Saracens. Over the centuries, the town submitted the domain of several powerful families: the Caldora, the Orsini, the De Sanctis, the Colonna, the Barberini and the Marquis Recupito of Raiano.
Emblem and main feature of the town is the Castle Caldora (or Castle Cantelmo), whose original structure dates from the XI century, initially built in a triangular shape with a single tower to the north. Residence of the Caldora Family, the castle was enlarged and a new wing with two other residential towers were added. Finally with the Orsini, two more cylindrical towers were erected.
Not to miss:
- the Cathedral Church dedicated to St. Mary of Mercy of the XVI century, which features an imposing façade preceded by a monumental fountain;
- the Church of San Marcello, dating back to 1047, probably the oldest in the area, which preserves inside interesting frescoes;
- the rural Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie;
- the Church of the immaculate conception, in Baroque style;
- the Convent of the Minor Friars (1589), which houses inside a painting by the Flemish artist Spranger;
- the numerous palaces;
- the rural engravings and paintings in the cave of Colle Nusco.