The Pizzomunno Monolith is a unique rock formation that emerges from the sand on the beach of Vieste. This limestone formation, approximately 25 meters high, is one of the most recognizable and famous natural icons of the Gargano, the peninsula on which Vieste is located. Its shape has been shaped by wind and sea erosion over the centuries. The monolith is known for its beauty and its majestic shape, which changes appearance depending on the angle from which you look at it.
The legend of Pizzomunno and Cristalda
It is said that at the time when the current city was just a village made up of sparse huts and inhabited by fishermen. A tall and strong young man named Pizzomunno lived there. Also in the same village lived a girl of rare beauty, with long sun-colored hair named Cristalda. The two young people fell in love, loving each other madly without anything being able to separate them.
Every day Pizzomunno faced the sea with his boat and punctually the mermaids emerged from the sea waves to sing sweet songs in honor of the fisherman. The sea creatures did not just sing, but prisoners of Pizzomunno’s gaze they offered him immortality several times if he agreed to become their king and lover.
The love that the young man showered on Cristalda, however, made the mermaids’ offers vain. One of the many evenings in which the two lovers went to wait for the night on the islet that stands in front of the coast, the mermaids, seized by a fit of jealousy, attacked Cristalda and dragged her into the depths of the sea.
Pizzomunno chased in vain the voice of her lover. The following day, the fishermen found the young man petrified with pain on the white rock that still bears his name today. Even today, every one hundred years the beautiful Cristalda returns from the abyss to join her young lover who has returned to human form for the occasion and relive their ancient love for just one night.
Visit to the Pizzomunno Monolith
To visit the Pizzomunno Monolith, you should travel to Vieste, a coastal city overlooking the Adriatic Sea in the Gargano region. The monolith is located right on the beach in Vieste, so it is easily accessible on foot from the city. You can reach it via a short walk along the seafront, while enjoying splendid panoramic views of the coast. The monolith is a popular destination for visitors wishing to admire this extraordinary natural creation.
The best time to visit
You can visit the Pizzomunno Monolith throughout the year, but the most recommended seasons are spring and summer. During these months, the weather is mild and the days are longer, providing the opportunity to explore the beach and surrounding area. However, it is important to note that the beach and monolith can be busier in summer due to the high tourist season. If you prefer to avoid the crowds, the months of September and October, in early autumn, can be a great choice, as the weather remains pleasant, and the beaches are less crowded.
Furthermore, you can combine a visit to the Pizzomunno Monolith with exploring other natural and cultural beauties of the Gargano area, such as sea caves, the Gargano National Park and the picturesque coastal towns of the region.
Ultimately, the Pizzomunno Monolith is one of the most iconic attractions in Puglia, with its imposing presence on the beach of Vieste. Your visit offers a unique opportunity to admire the beauty of nature and to explore the enchanting coast of the Gargano.