Pescara is the largest city in the region of Abruzzo and a major transportation hub. It is also the capital of the province of the same name. Except during the summer months, when the 16 km long sandy beach is occupied with tourists, it is a rather unsightly city by Italian standards.
Pescara travel guide
Tourist information: Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, 301 – 65100 Pescara (tel. +39 085 429001). Town hall: Piazza Italia (tel. +39 08542831).
Planes, trains and coaches
Pescara’s modern central station is an important hub, as the trains from Rome and those traveling along the Adriatic coast intersect here.
Pescara Airport (tel. 899130310) is located about 3 kilometers outside the city and is used by RyanAir, among others. There is a direct bus connection to the Corso Vittorio Emanuele II in front of the central station.
The interurban buses have their base in the Piazzale della Repubblica. There are buses to L’Aquila and Sulmona, as well as to more distant destinations such as Naples and Rome (Stazione Tiburtina).
The city’s biggest attraction is its beach.
Attractions that survived the World War II bombardments are the San Cetteo Cathedral, the 16th century Madonna dei Sette Dolori Sanctuary, the Palazzo del Governo and the birth home of Gabriele d’Annunzio, an Italian poet and hero of World War I.
The Santo Spirito Church and the Sant’Andrea Apostolo Church needed to be reconstructed after World War II.
The Bourbon Bath is what is left of the fortress of the city. For a while, it was used as a prison.
Events and festivals
The annual Pescara Jazz Festival takes place in July.
A brief history of Pescara
At the site where present day Pescara was founded, there used to be a busy port called Aternum. It is not known which people had founded this city.
After the fall of the Roman empire, the population dwindled to no more than a small number of fishermen. This village came to be called Piscaria.
Later, both Ruggero II and Federico II improved its infrastructure. In 1510, Charles V turned Pescara into a military fortress, which led to an increased importance and a population growth. The situation improved even further under the D’Avalos.
In 1927, Pescara became a provincial capital, after merging with Castellammare Adriatico. Pescar itself till then had been part of the province of Chieti, Castellamare of the province of Teramo.
During World War II, bombardments devastated much of the architectural patrimony of the historical center.
Between 1950 and 1970 Pescara experienced a period of rapid economic growth.
How to get to Pescara by car
The A14 along the coast runs parallel to the SS16. Both roads call at Pescara but on the slower SS16 there is no toll to pay. From Rome you can take either the A25 or the SS5 (toll-free).