Monte Conero: paradise in Marche
Monte Conero (or Mount Conero) is a small slice of paradise on the Adriatic coast. Give it one look, and you’ll be in love forever.
This beautiful “almost-mountain” (it is only a few meters short of being technically a mountain), it is beautiful, green and lush, and overlooks the sea while embraced by the Riviera of the same name.
Let’s set out to discover Mount Conero: the pearl of the Adriatic.
Countless photographs have portrayed this splendid part of the Adriatic coast, where the colors of the sea and of the mountain mix and mingle in harmony.
Mount Conero is located in the province of Ancona, Marche’s capital, and is the ideal destination if you are planning your holidays in Italy.
Excursions on Mount Conero
There are 18 different pathways to discover Mount Conero on foot, by bike or on horse, ranging from easy and pleasant walks for families – even with young children – to longer and more challenging itineraries. Any one of these options is perfect if you love adventure and are out to discover new views.
We warmly recommend two of them in particular: the one along the Portonovo Bay that leads to the North Belvedere, and the one headed to the South Belvedere (Passo del Lupo), set against the wonderful backdrop of the Two Sisters “faraglioni”.
The walk to the North Belvedere is about 45 minutes long. Start in Frazione del Poggio and head up the hill on a wide, well-signaled pathway in the shade. Once you reach a level area, you will see an amazing view of the Portonovo Bay on your left. Look down and you will notice the Napoleonic Fort, a small salt lake, the Clementina Tower and the Church of Santa Maria di Portonovo.
South Belvedere: the Passo del Lupo
A few different starting points can lead you to the South Belvedere.
One is the Bivio del Monte Conero (Mount Conero Junction): drive up the paved street and park at “Bar panini Belvedere”, then continue on foot. In a little over half an hour you will be at the South Belvedere.
The walk is beautiful and easy enough for kids to try: all you need are a pair of good walking shoes, even in the last few more narrow meters of the pathway.
An alternative starting point is from the cemetery in Sirolo, an easy 2.5-kilometer walk away.
On top of these two beautiful itineraries, there are “historical” excursions during which you can discover the local Roman Caves and rock carvings. Other options can guide you to the beaches along the Conero Riviera – both the most famous ones, such as the Urbani Beach and the Sassi Neri, or the more secluded and wild ones, such as the “Vedova” (“Widow”) and the “Scalaccia”.
The beaches of the Conero Riviera
The seaside near Mount Conero is beautiful: you simply must see the stretch of coast that goes from the Urbani Beach to the Sassi Neri, passing through the Beach of San Michele. These three adjoining beaches are in the municipality of Sirolo and can be admired in a single view from the central square of the town.
They have both free public beaches and private ones with amenities, and can be reached on foot, taking the public shuttle (during the summertime) or the private shuttles reserved for private facilities.
While in Sirolo, don’t forget to visit the Beach of the Two Sisters: you can walk there taking the pathway for Passo del Lupo – if you have the necessary equipment: this itinerary is rather challenging – or reach it by sea. If you don’t have your own boat, canoe or standup paddleboard, you can take the ferry from Numana (every day).
Another sight to see is the Beach of the Friars in Numana, listed amongst the most beautiful beaches in Italy by “Vanity Fair” in 2014.
Back north, don’t forget the “contrada” of Portonovo, overlooking the charming bay of the same name.
If you are into more adventurous experiences – and are ready to work for them! – head to the Mezzavalle Beach, an absolute favorite with the locals.