A surprise visit to Avellino

Because of his qualifying time in a track event, my son was asked to compete in an invite-only race in Aventino, in Italy’s Campania region.

It’s about a three-hour drive south of Rome, and I decided to take the day off and accompany him there.

I was excited to see him run, and to hopefully have  a wander around town before we returned.

Avellino, Campania, Italy/ Kimberly Sullivan

We were in for a bit of a surprise when we arrived, only to be told the race was cancelled last minute for “inclement weather”.

So inclement that the professional race was cancelled, but the little kids’ track clubs practiced out in those dangerous, cloudy conditions.

Sense some sarcasm from my side? More than deserved…

Avellino, Campania, Italy/ Kimberly Sullivan

So my son took advantage of that lovely track, with views of the mountains around, for a workout, and then we decided to use all our excess time exploring Avellino.

The town is about 50 km inland from Naples, with a population of a little over 50,000.

It’s easy to wander around and see the whole town, and it has one, wide central street perfect for the passeggiate. (And also where we found delicious sfogliatelle to bring back. home).

Avellino has seen a lot of destruction throughout its long history (dating back to Roman times). Much of it is built on ash that blew over from Mount Vesuvius. More recently, it was heavily damaged in WWII bombings, and suffered devastating earthquakes in 1980 and 1981. The 1980 Irpinia earthquake was especially tragic, and necessitated massive rebuilding efforts.

For fans of The Soprano series, the fictional Tony Soprano and his family came from Avellino.

Avellino, Campania, Italy/ Kimberly Sullivan

And, this being Campania, the food ain’t bad either! You’ll definitely want to have the delicious mozzarella di bufala when you’re here.

We stopped off to fuel up before the long ride back, and it was simply delicious.

Avellino, Campania, Italy/ Kimberly Sullivan

Never pass on fresh mozarella di bufala when in the Campania region!

Worth getting back just for that! So, despite the (unncessary) change in plans, we did enjoy “touristing” in Avellino.

Fingers crossed for the track next time…

Avellino, Campania, Italy/ Kimberly Sullivan

Avellino, Campania, Italy/ Kimberly Sullivan

Avellino, Campania, Italy/ Kimberly Sullivan

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