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Umbra Forest

16 km from Vico del Gargano is the Umbra forest. It is the largest natural forest of Italy and covers 10.500 hectares.

Foresta UmbraAccording to local folklore, "umbra" is a traditional umbra word derived from the Italian ombrosa or shady, this is because the foliage of the trees prevents most sunlight reaching the sparse forest floor.

In this Puglia amazon flourishes beech, fir, turkey oak, maple and carpini. Between the woods and shrubs flower orchids, sixty-five varieties grow here, a record in the Mediterranean. Amongst all of this live roe and fallow deer, woodpeckers and badgers.

Foresta Umbra

The forest has 14 miles of roads, footpaths and tracks, all of which have signs to provide interesting information. At the centre can be found the Rifugio Hotel, the forest farm, Saint Antonio's church and a man-made lake.

On the last Sunday of July, the festival of the forest takes place, during which there is a pageant which involves locals from all over the region.

 

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