Pollino National Park

Pollino National Park is the largest protected area which has been recently established in Italy. It involves the Southern Apennines in Calabria and Lucania. It stretches out from the Tyrrhenian Sea to the Ionian Sea, from Cozzo del Pellegrino to Serra Dolcedorme, from Piani di Campolongo, Novacco and Lanzo, to Piani del Pollino, from the rivers Argentino and Abatemarco, to the ravines of Lao and Raganello, to the streams Peschiera and Frido. The territory, large and unpolluted, preserves rare and exceptional endemic species, like the Bosnian Pine, the Golden Eagle and the Roe Deer. The natural places, covered with large beech tree woods, snow, formed by dolomitic rocks, morainic deposits, glacial cirques, scattered with gorges and caves, are enriched with paleontological sites, like Grotta del Romito and Valle del Mercure, and archaeological sites dating back to the Greek colonization, with Sanctuaries, Monasteries, Castles, Historical Town Centers like Laino Castello, environments characterized by rural life, popular feasts, ethnic-linguistic minorities of Albanian origin of the 15th-16th century.
The whole Park area includes Pollino and Orsomarso massif. It is a mountain chain belonging to the Southern Apennines, at the border between the regions of Basilicata and Calabria, in the heart of the Mediterranean area. Its mountains represent the highest peaks of Southern Italy, covered with snow most of the year, from November to May. From its summits, over 2,200 meters of altitude above sea-level, you can see westwards the Tyrrhenian coasts of Maratea, Praia a Mare, and Belvedere Marittimo, and eastwards the Ionian coast from Sibari to Metaponto.
The nature and culture of Pollino, the global frame of its physical and human heritage, which is manifold and complex, wide and differentiated, go from naturalistic, geomorphological, vegetational, botanic, and faunistic values to a unique landscape and historical, archaeological, ethnic, anthropological, cultural, and scientific values.
The most “prestigious” and famous area is made of Dolomitic rocks, calcareous ramparts, fault walls of tectonic origins, precipices, very deep gorges, karst caves, the so-called “timpe” or gorges of volcanic origin, swallow holes, plateaus, meadows, high altitude pastures, morainic deposits, glacial cirques, erratic boulders. (Fonte www.parks.it)