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Deep in the Angel Caves, Pertosa

Inside the Angel grotto, Pertosa

Inside the Angel grotto, Pertosa

Welcome to Pertosa and the Angel Caves
From Jesse's Journeys in Italy

Population: 727 (2003)
Official website:
Wikipedia: n/a
Map: MapQuest

The Angel's Caves (Grotte di Pertosa) are situated in a picturesque natural amphitheatre surrounded by the greenery of the Alburnus Mountain Chain at about seventy km from Salerno along the road that runs from Auletta to  Pertosa.

According to recent studies, the formation of these caves, (which run 2.5 miles underground) dates back t0 about thirty-five-million years ago.  A wealth of finds provide evidence that the caves were already inhabited in the Stone Age. 

The Greeks and Romans used them as places of worship and in the Christian era they were finally dedicated teh Archangel Michael.

The Agnel's Caves wind through the mountains for some 2,500 meters froming long underground passages, imposing grottoes of astonishing dimensions filled with impressive stalagmites and stalacites.  They are quite unique in Italy aslo because of the fact that in order to visit them visitors have to cross a lake fed by an underground affluent.  This is traversable by boat.

As the boat is skillfully steered across this underground lake and penetrates the entrails of the earth for a few hundred meters, the strange silence of this underground oasis, is broken only by the sound of the oars pounding at the water.  The crossing only takes a few minutes and upon landing the visitor is already spellbound, by the fact that here, they are met by an impressive underground waterfall, formed by the nearby Negro river.

From the waterfall, the visitor walks through narrow underground passages and corridors with arabesue decorations lit by a masterful play of lights.  Huge halls of stalagmites and slatacite, give way to smaller streams and ever-larger cave galleries. 

On your visit to Campania, visiting the Angel's Caves at Pertosa is a must!

by Jesse Andrews, October 6th, 2005




The caves at Pertosa cannot be easily reached by train.  However, they are easily reachable by car, folloiwng the A3 Salern-Reggio Calabria highway and exiting at Petina for the S.S. 19, also known as the Statale dell Calabrie.  There are many signs which lead you right to the foot of the caves.




Blue light in the Angel grotto, Pertosa


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