La Transumanza – Take the Shepherd’s Journey

It’s an Abruzzo practice that is thousands of years old.

La Transumanza, which literally means “crossing the land” is a twice-yearly practice of Abruzzo shepherds herding their flocks across the mountains and down to the plains and greener pastures of Puglia and sometimes, Lazio. You can easily understand the pragmatic nature of this. In winter months when the mountains can become inhospitable and lacking in a bountiful food supply.

Now, La Porta dei Parchi offers La Transumanza that you can join.

Yes, you can take the journey up into the breathtaking Apennines with the shepherds for four nights and three days with Nunzio’s shepherds. You have the opportunity to live like the shepherds, eating what they eat, and sleeping as they sleep. For those who either can’t rough it or prefer a nice comfy bed, other sleeping options are offered.

Master Shepherd Nunzio Marcelli tells us about La Transumanza in the following video.

The is the third in a four-part interview series about Nunzio and La Porta dei Parchi. I hope you’ll tune in to hear him speak passionately about this special event. While my dear friend Novelia is on hand again to provide a translation, this video is an excellent opportunity to hear Nunzio speak in Italian and hone your comprehension skills. Nunzio speaks quite clearly. He’s also a professor so he understands the importance of speaking clearly!

If La Transumanza is something you find yourself wanting to do, be sure to check out La Porta dei Parchi’s website where you can learn more. 

By |2019-01-20T02:14:25+01:00December 11th, 2018|Abruzzo|8 Comments

About the Author:

I’m an American expat living in Italy!


  1. Betty December 28, 2018 at 1:59 am - Reply

    Jed, I’ve really enjoyed your great videos……good job capturing close to the earth lifestyle for the rest of us wusses!

    • Jed December 28, 2018 at 1:12 pm - Reply

      Grazie, Betty! I’m trying to “up my game” constantly. So much to learn. So many possibilities. Next year, when I do the Transumanza, I’ll be sure to capture the full immersion experience! Buone feste!

  2. Debra December 12, 2018 at 5:57 am - Reply

    Oh, Jed….what a fantastic video. I love seeing the scenery that I now recognize. Listening to Nunzio was a treat. Even picked up several words. Might be hope for me yet! Seeing our awesome Novelia is always fun. I do think I might try the sheparding and sleeping on the mountain. However, I might wait for your full report when you return next summer…lol. I show everyone at work your videos and they love them. They also like seeing where their cheese comes from that I bring back for them. Keep up the great work, it’s very much appreciated.
    PS. My home purchase is progressing nicely…yey!!

    • Jed December 12, 2018 at 2:57 pm - Reply

      Ciao Debra! So good to hear from you and I’m glad you continue to enjoy the videos and snippets of the part of Italy you’ve come to love so well! I’m glad to hear all is going well with the house. Let me know when you’ll be back in Sulmona. I hope to see you again soon! xoxox Jed

  3. Rich Del Signore December 11, 2018 at 10:14 pm - Reply


    Sign me up!
    Looks awesome and I may someday try it!
    These videos really make me miss Abruzzo

    • Jed December 12, 2018 at 2:59 pm - Reply

      Ciao Rich! I’ll keep dangling the Abruzzo carrots in front of you! Maybe we’ll do La Transumanza together. What a full immersion story that would be!

  4. Kevin December 11, 2018 at 5:33 pm - Reply

    Jed, it’s so cool how you tilted the camera to make it look like the shepherds, and their flock, are actually climbing up a mountain. 😉 Okay, okay… bad humor aside…this looks like such a wonderful experience! You’ve captured what so many of us miss as we go about our modern, hectic day-to-day lives..

    • Jed December 12, 2018 at 3:02 pm - Reply

      You crack me up, Kevin. Sorry to disappoint you, but no false advertising! But, maybe next time I’ll employ the camera tilt to exaggerate! It really is a different world up there. Amazing how so many other things fall away and seem petty.

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