Set in the green scenery of the National Park of Gargano, San Giovanni Rotondo is famous in the world because it houses the remains of St. Pio from Pietrelcina, known all over the world as Padre Pio.
This town was founded in the year 1000 on the ruins of the former village of the 4th century b.C., of which some archaeological remains can be still seen, such as a circular baptistery of the tombs.
In 1916 the very young Franciscan friar who had dedicated all his life to charity works, the most important of which is the building of the Hospital “Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza” inaugurated on May 5th 1956, came to this town. Padre Pio lived and worked in the convent complex dedicated to St.Mary of the Graces, near to the hospital, which consisted of the convent, the old church and the new church, built by the friar, in order to host the numerous pilgrims who came to visit him.
The historical centre of San Giovanni Rotondo, developed around  a maze of alleys and narrow streets, even if it is a separate part of the town, usually hosts the believers of the religious sites dedicated to the Saint and offers them picturesque scenarios that are unique on the promontory of Gargano.

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