Seaside Treasure of the Marches Region

October 17, 2011 / Places
Sirolo, le Marche,
“Center of the Adriatic, center of Italy, center of the heart,” reads a brochure at the Tourist Office. You’ll agree if you seek it out, heading through the mountainous Marche region to the “la Riviera dell’Adriatico“, as Italians call this rocky stretch of seacoast, just south of Ancona. And due to unseasonably hot weather this fall, Italians have enjoyed the splendid Sirolo beaches all the way up to mid/October!

The pleasures are many. The sea, first of all… jagged limestone cliffs plunge to the sea below the town of Sirolo, framing peaceful bays of cobalt blue waters. The beach called “San Michele” entices. Below a pine forest a white-sand beach with just three rows of beach chairs and umbrellas. I have wondered about the naming of this beach: there must be a grotto in those seaside cliffs somewhere. I like to imagine that maybe a local fisherman gave thanks to the Saint in a seaside grotto after making it home safely in a storm….

Halfway down the road to the San Michele beach is one of the best restaurants on the coastline, da Silvio where Iranian owner (once cook for the former owner, Silvio), Mansur, and his friendly staff dish up seafood wonders. The only distraction: the enticing seaviews below.

A memorable seaside lunch and a relaxing afternoon at the beach are best followed by a pre-dinner stroll through Sirolo itself, once the thirteenth-century fiefdom of a count that still preserves its medieval traces.. remnants of the medieval walls, a fortified guard tower and the twisty streets characteristic of medieval defensive urban planning (can’t shoot a crossbow around a curve!). The white limestone homes are accented by color: blue doors, red and bright green shutters, fuchsia petunias in overflowing window boxes and colorful hanging wash all give chromatic splashes to back streets.

As day gives up to nightfall, the muted conversations of diners at the backstreet restaurants mingle with the chatter of local children riding their bikes and kicking soccer balls in this seaside haven. Nothing quite like a Sirolo summer night: still time to enjoy if this unseasonably hot weather hangs on.

Anne Robichaud

by Anne Robichaud

An Umbrian tour guide in Italy most of the year, Anne also teaches Umbrian rural cuisine in private homes in the U.S. in February and March (see www.annesitaly.com/united-states-events/u-s-cooking-classes)… and lectures.
Anne and her husband Pino worked the land for many years in the 1970’s and rural life, rural people, rural cuisine are una passione for Anne. She writes frequently on Umbria and other areas of Italy. See www.annesitaly.com for more on her tours, cooking classes, lectures – and her blog! Do see www.stayassisi.com for news on the Assisi apartment – and Assisi countryside guest house – she and Pino now rent out!

12 Responses to “Seaside Treasure of the Marches Region”

  1. Thank you for this lovely description and photos. I have never visited the Marche but your article intensified my desire to go. Grazie!

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  2. Lyn Beckenham

    Le Marche – another area I still long to explore! You make the sea-side area of the region sound lovely!

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  3. Josette Giordano Fahey

    Love this website. Looks and sounds like a very peaceful and beautiful area. Drawing me in! Thank you.

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  4. Judy Monteith

    When looking at the pictures and reading about them makes me feel as if I am there. It looks like a beautiful place. Judy

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  5. Frank Netzer

    Thank you for this, and all of your Notebook pages. Italy is truly a magnificent country. We especially like the Cinqueterre, with its ruggedness and beauty.

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  6. Paulette

    Anne – this is a beautiful picture and great description of Le Marche. I can’t wait to get back to Italy this spring…..still trying to decide where I will study. Hopefully plans will work out for our March Umbrian feast! Ciao

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  7. James Giambrone

    I love getting your posts Anne, the sites to visit in Italy grow with each posting and return to the homeland we will, we loved Italy!

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  8. umberto levrini

    it makes me so sad to see such beauty and too old to travel there –where were u when i was young and robusto -but the temptation is there and i might just pick-up and go look for u and spent time with ur expertise on beautiful places of italia–i ‘ve been to rome and southern italy ,sicily and switzerland,france and the uk– but never to the beautiful places that u discribe of northern italy-i tell myself that even if i am to all to travel there i can enjoy them thru anne ribecaud’s eyes and writings -milli gracia!!!

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  9. Pat Lorenzetti

    Finally an article on the Marches. “Italy’s best kept secret” as the British have named it.

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  10. Rosemary

    We spent a lovely couple of days in Sirolo when we lived in Perugia, after getting up at sunset to ride the bus to this beautiful seaside town. Views and beaches were incredible. Thanks for reminding me of it!

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  11. Paulette

    Anne and I met last year when she visited my home for one of her fabulous cooking class during her winter US tour. I read Anne’s blog last year – wrote to her asking to be put on her calendar for DC in March and from there a friendship was born. I have the highest praise for Anne – she came with wonderful Umbrian stories, an energy to gather all the cooks together to prepare a fabulous dinner, after which we sat and enjoy each other’s company. I call it My Umbrian Feast and look to a repeat performance in March 2012. I encourage all who love Italian food (and who doesn’t) to sign up for one of Anne’s dinner classes!!

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