Boasting several world class national parks, the Central Apennines are a nature lover’s paradise. A complex system of mountain ridges and vast tablelands, this great topographic knot is the final refuge of many animals and plants that were once widespread across all of Italy’s mountainous areas.


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Central apennines

Less than two hours’ drive from the cafes and colonnades of Rome is a land that is both wild and wondrous. With craggy peaks topping out at nearly 3000 meters, ancient beach forests inhabited by bears, wolves and wild boar, and skies patrolled by golden eagles and griffon vultures, the Central Apennines truly are Italy’s “wild heart”.

Central Apennines Italy map

Rewilding vision

For each rewilding landscape Rewilding Europe has developed an inspiring vision that shows their ambition for the next ten years. Together with their local partners they work to make this vision a reality.

Rewilding Efforts

In the Central Apennines rewilding area Rewilding Europe is working with local partners to develop large “coexistence corridors” by connecting the local economy with wilder nature in five corridors collectively covering more than 100,000 hectares.

By reducing the damage caused by such wildlife, and by allowing communities to benefit from it, people living here will become ambassadors for the area’s wild nature.  

Rewilding Europe is working with local partners to reduce bear mortality and conflict by installing traffic accident prevention measures, removing old fencing, restoring and improving signage, and distributing new mobile electric fences.

By working to establish a vibrant nature-based economy in the Central Apennines rewilding area, Rewilding Europe is providing local communities with an economic incentive to protect such wildlife.

The Central Apennines is now a true biodiversity hotspot, a wilderness at the very heart of bustling Italy, only 1,5 hours from Rome. The Central Apennines, a majestic range of limestone peaks reaching an altitude of almost 3,000 meters, concealing caves, deep canyons, some of Europe’s oldest beech forests and a wide range of grasslands – inhabited by the Marsican brown bear, gray wolf, Apennine chamois, red deer, golden eagle, vultures and an astonishing set of endemic flora. This provides opportunities for truly Mediterranean wilderness experiences in the Apennines – the Wild Heart of Italy.
Greater Côa Valley frog
Greater Côa Valley frog


Greater Côa Valley
Signature Journey
Abruzzo, Wild heart of Italy


Greater Côa Valley flowers
Photo expedition
Abruzzo with Bruno D’Amicis & Umberto Esposito
Greater Côa Valley
Make it Private
Winter Wolf Tracking In Italy’s Apennines
Greater Côa Valley flowers
Make it Private
Italy’s Big Five


“This truly is the wild heart of Italy!”

Picture of Mario Cipollone

Mario Cipollone
Team leader of Central Apennines

How would you characterise your rewilding area?
Historic villages and dramatic landscapes with outstanding opportunities to experience majestic wildlife and wilderness experiences a short drive from Rome. Brown bears, wolves, large ungulates and large birds of prey are the main attractions, complemented by excellent Italian food, wine and hospitality and the opportunity to meet livestock owners and mountain people and sample their unique culture. I invite every nature lover to come here and enjoy what our surprising nature can offer in the most respectful way. This truly is the wild heart of Italy!

What would you like to see achieved in your rewilding area in the next five years?
Over the next five years I would like to see significant growth of the Marsican bear population with an extension of its core area, the comeback of scavengers and raptors which inhabited this area before hunting and poisoning took their toll, and the expansion of the European otter in our rivers. I would also like to see an increased environmental awareness amongst our local stakeholders, and the increased adoption of best practices for coexistence with wildlife, which form the basis of our conservation efforts.

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