A labyrinth among the hills
Castelnovo del Friuli
Places and history
Welcome to Castelnovo del Friuli, a labyrinth made up of thirty-eight hamlets, immersed in luxuriant nature, among hills and streams. More than anywhere else, the land has made the history of this town: in past centuries, clay was used to produce ceramic objects, now on display at Villa Sulis, while vegetable gardens, vineyards and orchards were used to produce products that the women, the rivindicules, went to sell in the markets. This same land is the birthplace of the prized pink onion of the Val Cosa. The original nucleus of Castelnovo developed around the castle, whose tower was transformed into the bell tower of the imposing Church of San Nicolò, a terrace overlooking the surrounding hills, mountains and plain.
This fascinating world, to which the inhabitants are still very attached, was hit by the crisis and emigration and suffered a severe blow with the 1976 earthquake. There are now just over eight hundred residents. But many stories and traditions re-emerge and become a reason to visit and experience Castelnovo. Two ring routes, organised by the ZeroAsfalto association, allow you to explore the area by mountain bike, amidst adventure and culture. There are various pedestrian routes, even short ones, capable of surprising visitors with important stories, such as that of Virginia Tonelli “Luisa”, a leading figure in the Friulian Resistance, burnt by the Nazis in the Risiera di San Sabba in Trieste. It is worth walking as far as Davour la Mont, an abandoned village that has recently been restored thanks to the extraordinary work of a group of volunteers and has become a place of memory, with the Tonelli houses. Or you can climb from Almadis to Praforte, on the slopes of Ciaurlec, or reach the small church of Collemonaco and discover the singular story of its bells.
Wonders of the land
Church of San Nicolò
and castle ruins
Davour la mont
Thirty-eight villages scattered across the hills
Immersed in lush nature
Ancient stories and traditions
The charm of abandoned villages, immersed in a luxuriant nature, in Castelnovo is combined with the rediscovery of ancient stories and traditions. It is here that excellent products such as the Valcosa pink onion are grown. Thirty-eight villages are still inhabited, scattered across the hills and surrounded by woods: a world to explore on foot or by mountain bike.
Cjastelnouf, pais di trojs, al era un zardin, una roba di no crodi: in primavera un spetacul di colors, arbui e vis ben tignûs e ben cultivâs.
How to get there
Castelnovo can be reached by car in about fifty minutes from Pordenone and in an hour from Udine.
The nearest train station is Casarsa della Delizia, on the Venezia – Udine – Trieste line.
The train station of Pinzano can be reached from Sacile by a substitute bus (www.trenitalia.com).
By bus, Castelnovo can be reached from Spilimbergo with line 25 (www.tplfvg.it).
The young woods of Castelnovo are criss-crossed by two well-marked routes for mountain bikers. The two routes can also be followed on foot, being careful of cyclists, but there are other short paths that allow you to visit the various villages, encountering stories and unexpected views. The rolling hills of Castelnovo are also suitable for cycle tourism. At the Ai Pioppi di Paludea sports area there is a column for recharging ebikes.