The ascent of Monte Epomeo starts from Fontana village (on the map), the highest settlement on the island, which can be reached by bus. Administratively, this locality is part of the city of Serrara Fontana, so the Internet walks infa that the road to the highest point of the island begins there. In fact, the city center is located in Serarra, at an altitude of 366 meters above sea level, while Fontana is a hundred meters higher-452 meters. The name of the village comes from an abundant mountain spring, known since Hellenic times. In the Middle Ages, a village grew up around the spring, whose inhabitants were engaged in sheep farming. Now only memories remain of the source - it disappeared about two centuries ago as a result of a landslide.
Buses of the CS and CD ring lines pass through the village, line 10 connects Fontana with the beaches of Maronti (map of bus routes).
The bus stop is located in the very center of the village, where there is a small square with a tiled sign pointing to the cardinal directions. The square is separated from the road by various decorative vegetation in tubs and boxes. This way of decorating streets is very popular on the island, I have even seen flower beds on wheels, which are removed for the winter.
There are also tables of a summer cafe, completely empty at this early hour, and a stand with detailed tourist information.
There is a taxi rank next to the bus stop, whose drivers lazily offered their services to me. The weather was overcast, and here, at an altitude of almost half a kilometer, it was noticeably cooler than down by the sea.
There is a neat little church of San Antonio in the square, but it was closed this morning, so I stopped by after walking to the top of Monte Epomeo and will tell you about it later. There is a larger church a hundred meters down the road towards Serarra. In any case, unlike this one, it is marked on the map, and is called Chiesa di Santa Maria della Mercede. But there was no time to go there.
To the left of the church is a statue of Jesus with his arms outstretched in a patronizing gesture.
On the side facing the sea, there is a very small park with a monument to the inhabitants of Serarra Fontana who died in the wars. In which wars, it is not specified, the sign informs that the monument was opened in 1957.
Behind the monument there is a viewing platform - belvedere, with a view towards Maronti. However, the landscape was not very pleasant, as instead of the expected coast, only vegetable gardens are visible.
And the roofs of houses covered with solar panels.
After finishing my brief tour of the Fontana center, I headed towards the road to the top of the extinct volcano. There is a street with the appropriate name Via Epomeo, starting behind the church of San Antonio.
The Rue Courtauld rises, and at first I thought that if this continued, I would forget about going back to my hotel for lunch. But the road to the top of Monte Epomeo was not difficult and even pleasant. Read more about this in the next article.