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Photo Blog: Bonefro & Termoli, Italy

My first collection of photos on this blog of Bonefro, Italy received quite a bit of attention, especially from those who were looking for family roots in Bonefro. I was very lucky to spend 8 summers in Bonefro helping to run the Adriatic Chamber Music Festival, and I feel that I came to know the town and its people very well. It’s a time of my life that I will never forget, and I do plan to go back again.

Here is a second batch of photos that I took in 2004, a mix of photos of Bonefro, Termoli and the Tremiti Islands, islands that can actually be seen from Bonefro on the clearest of days, something I saw only once or twice in my 8 years there. I hope you enjoy the pictures.

Bonefro photo essayAs mentioned in the previous blog, the most important part of any small town in Italy is its piazza. This picture is one of those rare moments when not a soul sits in the center of town chatting, playing cards or simply walking around.

Bonefro photo essayIn 2002 a large 5.4 earthquake shook the small town of San Giuliano di Puglia, just a short distance from Bonefro. While most of the news was centered on San Giuliano and the 26 people killed there, several of who lived in Bonefro, Bonefro was greatly affected by the quake. Here is a picture of one of the two main churches in Bonefro that had to be reinforced by metal beams in order to prevent it from falling down. It looked this way for several years afterward.

Bonefro photo essayThe other church in Bonefro. It too was forced to close after the 2002 earthquake.

Bonefro photo essayAfternoon chat. A common site when walking through the streets of Bonefro, or any other small town in Italy.

Bonefro photo essayThe convent. While it no longer serves a religious purpose, the convent is between 400 and 500 years old. It has also served as a jail and more recently a school. It now serves as a center for annual events, such as the Adriatic Chamber Music Festival, which I was a part of. The foundation of the convent itself date back over 2,000 years.

Bonefro photo essayThe convent hallway ceilings lit up at night. The ceilings in the convent are high and gothic in design.

Bonefro photo essayEvening music in front of the convent. I can’t remember what these instruments were called, but they were unlike any I had ever seen before.

Bonefro photo essayMore evening music and singing in front of the convent.

Bonefro photo essayIn addition to the piazza, and sitting right next to the pizza itself are the 4 to 5 bars that are open for business year round, also a place for talking (and arguing), playing cards, watching TV and gambling.

Bonefro photo essayI have always been amazed at some of the front doors all throughout Bonefro, many having on their front doors these to knock on. Very ornate in their design.

Bonefro photo essayFood shopping.

Bonefro photo essayNight festival in Termoli. 45 minutes away by car is the coastal city of Termoli. In August of every year the old town has a night festival that lasts for two weeks. Here is the main pizza in the center of old town Termoli, decorated with lights. Festivities last well into the night, with all main roads closed off for music and food.

Bonefro photo essayI forget who the saint is in lights here, but very much a common sight in Termoli at that time of the year.

Bonefro photo essayLate night discussion in front of the old church in Termoli’s old town piazza.

Bonefro photo essayFestivities also include sidewalk shows. Here is a show in the old town piazza in Termoli.

Bonefro photo essayInside an abandoned lighthouse at the Tremiti Islands.

7 Responses to “Photo Blog: Bonefro & Termoli, Italy”

  1. 1 franje

    I’m an Italo-canadian, who was in Bonefro in July 2008. I wonder if we met! I loved hearing the orchestra of the Adriatic Chamber Music Festival. Do you have any photos you can post of your time in Bonefro in 2008, presuming you were there?

  2. 2 Giovanna Antonico

    I absolutely love the pics
    brings back memories of my childhood, ..walking through these streets

  3. 3 Marie Radei

    My family came from Bonefro to Norwood, Mass., in the early 1900s. I enjoyed both of your photo blogs very much. I visited Bonefro in 2006 but would like to return to the Adriatic festival in the future.

  4. 4 Donna DiMarzo

    My husband family came from Bonefro, so I’ve always wanted to visit. Now after seeing your beautiful photos of this lovely village I can’t wait.My only problem is there doesn’t seem to be any lodging available in the center of town. If anyone knows of any rooms available for rent I would love to know. Thanks for your essay on Bonefro I truly enjoyed it. Ciao Donna

  5. 5 Melisa


    Thank you for posting you pictures. I was looking for black and white pictures of Bonefro and looking at your site found a picture of my dad, aunt and nonna talking in front of our house…

    I love your work and I was wondering if you had any other architectural photos of Bonefro I could take a look at?

    Thank You very much and have a nice day.


  6. 6 joseph march

    Dear Donna,

    My father’s family was from this regent. Thou it has been difficult
    to pinpoint exactly which town. I’ve been told: Termoli, Bonefro, Campobasso, and Campomerino.

    My father Americanized his name from DiMarzo to March in the 30’s.
    If you have a moment, I’d like to here from you just to see if there might be a connection.

  7. 7 admin

    Hi Joseph,

    There is a bar in Bonefro’s central piazza called Bar di Marzo ( and is a very common name in Bonefro. Also on the World War I & II monuments in the piazza, you will find a lot of di Marzo names on it. Perhaps there are other di Marzos in the area (San Giuliano di Puglia, Montelongo, Ripabottoni, Santa Croce di Magliano etc). I can send you by email the address of the former mayor of Bonefro, Luigi Pesce, who I often refer to when people ask me about family lineage for Bonefro. Hope this helps. I haven’t been to Bonefro since 2005, and miss it very much. Spent 8 summers there from 1998-2005 and got to know it very well. A very beautiful and tranquil part of the world.

    I’m glad you enjoyed these pictures.



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