Historic it may be, but Pescara, the largest city in the Abruzzo, is today an overwhelmingly modern urbanisation. It stands on the Adriatic coast on each side of the mouth of the Aterno-Pescara river, its sandy beaches stretching for over 20 kilometres along the coast, making it a very popular holiday centre, primarily for Italians. The beaches are the main draw, and you can cycle for miles along the coast, crossing the estuary via the Ponte del Mare, built in 2009 and Italy’s longest pedestrian and cycle bridge.
As a university city, Pescara is particularly proud of its association with Gabriele d’Annunzio, the early 20th-century poet, playwright and soldier. You can visit the house where he was born in 1863, but more interesting is the Museo delle Genti d’Abruzzo, which tells the story of the Abruzzo people through art, artefacts and displays.