Picinisco is one of the small towns of the Valle Di Comino territory in the province of Frosinone, in the region of Lazio. It is situated between the towns of Cassino and Sora, perched high, overlooking the whole of Val Comino valley. The views are spectacular.

Picinisco’s 62 kilometre of roads and large territory (2nd largest in Lazio) forms part of the Parco Nazionale d’Abruzzo, voted by Lonely Planet in 2011 as one of the five best National Park’s in Europe.

While the origins of Picinisco are uncertain, what is certain is that the first written record of the name is to be found in 1017AD and the first record of the Castle in 1054AD.  The Castle was followed by the Belltower in the early 13th century, adjacent to the Church of San Lorenzo and then the Church itself in 1305AD. The Church of Santa Maria at the Cemetery was mentioned in the records of Monte Cassino in 1110AD and further archaeological evidence proves this to have been a place for votive offerings by the Romans before the birth of Christ. The first dwellings in and around Picinisco, which were discovered by Don Dionigi Antonelli, are located in the hamlet today known as Immoglie, formerly named San Valentino and razed by the Saracens prior to 894.

The village was a fortified walled town for its protection in medieval times and the majority of the buildings in the old town date from 1700 to 1900. Parts of the original fortification walls from 1000AD remain in use in a number of buildings including the Hotel “Sotto Le Stelle”and the gates of these walls can be seen around the village.


Picinisco has Five Gates

  • Porta della Prece, (the prayer gate) built in 1711, as can be seen from the date on the keystone of the arch, at which you will find the Hotel Sotto Le Stelle;
  • Porta Saracena on Via Porta Saracena. This was at one time the only point of entry from Val Comino into Picinisco;
  • Porta Codarda, located on the northwest wall;
  • Porta Rione, situated on the southeast approached from the Parco Montano. On either side lie the towers of the castle;
  • Porta della Piazza, leading onto the piazza (today called Piazza Ernesto Capocci) is constructed in its present form in 1838.

Iron ore was dug from its mountains in time of antiquity along with silver and copper. Iron was still being promoted in the mid 19th century at a time when paper produced by the Bartolocmucci  Visocchi mill at Borgo Castellone was famous throughout Europe. However, like all of central and southern Europe, emigration resulted in millions leaving their homes throughout the 19th and early 20th Century. The inhabitants of Picinisco and many other towns in Valle di Comino found themselves following the tracks of relations to England, America, Belgium and Scotland and did not forget the route home. To this day, thousands return for holidays, weddings and baptisms.

Today, Picinisco is full of tourists in the balmy summer months and is a place where one can escape the overpowering heat of the valley and retire to the fresh mountain air nights. There is skiing in the winter months, mushroom picking, truffle hunting, wild boar hunting and wonderful hillside walks and many other pursuits to be enjoyed.