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Morano Calabro

Morano Calabro

A jewel hidden on Pollino Mountains

September 52017

The village of Morano Calabro is a sparkling jewel hidden on the mountains of Pollino massif. Visiting Morano is a proper surprise for those who decide to stop on this lonely center and enjoy its beauty.

From Morano visitors can enjoy the views of the southern side of Pollino. Since its foundation, Morano Calabro is located on a strategic spot, where all the roads connecting the north to the south and the east to the west have to pass. Actually, the Romans built the first defensive outpost that has been converted into a castle by the Normans.

Morano Calabro’s structure is developed around the castle on a steep hill and is a vivid representation of a medieval organization of the urban space.

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Fallistro Giants

Fallistro Giants

Magical forest

September 12017

The Area of Fallistro is one of the most famous spots of the Sila Grande. It has a surface area of 6.5150 hectares, closed in a perimeter of 1,2 km. Fallistro forest stands between 1398 and 1418 meters above sea level.

The Giganti di Fallistro area is characterized by a vegetation where century pine larch trees dominate over willow trees, beach trees and oak trees. The most relevant studies conducted over this area estimate that the origin of this forest could date back to the years 1620-1650, when the owner of the property decided to build homes for a summer resort and also build a spinning mill. Therefore the property of the Fallistro area decided to adorn and protect the homes by planting lanes of oak trees and implanting pine trees throughout the territory in order to erect shelter as soon as the vegetation of the forest would allow it.

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La Cattolica

La Cattolica

Very nice small Bizantine church

June 222017

Stilo’s ‘La Cattolica’ is one of the best expressions of bizantine style in Calabria. This building overlooks the Stilaro’s valley, also known as Bizantine Valley.

Its shape (is a square building) and location remind the visitor the old, almost magical, greek monks, with their long beards and their austere lifestyle, who found the perfect spot for their religious rites in the stark landscape.

‘La Cattolica’ stands on a hill called ‘Monte Consolino’ and it has been built during the X Century using recycled building material coming from Kaulon (a very important town of Magna Graecia). Each side of this square-shaped church is 7 meters long and the complex is overlooked by five magnificent Cupolas, covered with red bricks.

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Musaba

Musaba

Contemporary Art Museum

June 222017

MUSABA is a living entity composed which vital parts are a park, a laboratory and a museum.

MUSABA is a magical place in which arts, architecture and nature create and impressive mix. MUSABA is located in the middle of Torbido Valley, in the council of Mammola, Reggio Calabria province. This is an area full of contradictions, in which the stark landscape and the heritage of the different cultures that crossed this place play a strategic part.

MUSABA was born in 1969 when Nik Spatari and Hinske Mass decided to create an arts hub on the ruins of the ancient Santa Barbara historical complex.

Starting from the end of the 60’s they proposed exhibitions of contemporary art located into the ruins and wild nature; since then they never stopped restoring, digging up and building new objects with recyclable materials.

MUSABA’s area is packed with Nik Spatari’s works, like mosaics, plastic craftworks, the coloured church known as ‘Cappella Sistina’ of Calabria and the Art Box that are hosting structures for artists.

MUSABA is the visionary dream of a couple of artists who decided to deal with the problems of creating a living art hub in a marginal area like Calabria; this place show how the commitment for the growth of the south is possible and, overall, more exciting than doing the same activity in a friendly background.

Author: Chiara Falcone.

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Badolato

Badolato

Multicultural Ionian village

June 182017

Badolato is a tiny village that stands on the top of a hill. Badolato preserved its medieval atmosphere, thanks to its small and crowded streets. Sometimes the visitor can get impressed discovering an astonishing panorama just at the end of the tiniest of the alleys.

Badolato has been built in 1080 by Normans. During the XX century the inhabitants of the old part of Badolato left the village to move to other countries, so this magical place has been almost a ghost town for several years; but since 1997, thanks to the dedication of kurdish immigrants community and the hospitality of locals, Badolato’s old city flourished and became a nice and multicultural place.

 

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Reggio Calabria

Reggio Calabria

Last city of Italian peninsula

June 112017

Reggio is the last city of Italian peninsula. It is located between the mountains of Aspromonte and the narrow sea which divides Calabria from Sicily. 

Reggio is the main centre of an historically and culturally important area.

In fact it hosts the National Museum of Magna Grecia which is considered one of the most important museums of Mediterranean area The Museum main attractions are the several evidences of the different cultures that characterized southern Calabria since the Greeks. Visitors must-see attraction are: Bronzi di Riace, the philosopher’s head, the Kuros of Reggio , The head of Apollo, the group of Dioscuri, the bronze tables of the Zeus Temple archive of Locri Epizefiri and the collections of pinks. 

Reggio CalabriaIt is one of the oldest cities in Europe and has been was one of the most important cities of Magna Grecia thanks to its strategic location.

 

Reggio Calabria is nowadays one of the three most important cities of Calabria.

 

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Pizzo

Pizzo

Magnificent,sweet small city

June 112017

Pizzo Calabro stands on the top of a sea cliff, on the perfect spot to take your time and stare to the awesome panorama of the gulf. Pizzo Calabro is an absolute must-see small city. Once there visitors can enjoy the Tartufo, a sort of local ice-cream chocolate deli.

Piazza della Repubblica and the panoramic view of its balcony is the core of Pizzo; from this sunny square visitors can easily reach Murat Castle and the churches of Piedigrotta and San Giorgio.

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Tropea

Tropea

Red onions and white beaches

June 112017

Tropea is a mosaic composed by small alleys and tiny piazzas, in which the balcony that overlooks the coast wetted by an amazing light blue sea plays the main role. Tropea is located, like most of the small villages of Calabria, on the top of a hill, trapped between cliff and beaches. A proper paradise.

The architecture of Tropea is the unavoidable result of the turnover of different cultures at the lead of the city. Must-see buildings of Tropea are the Cathedral and che Santa Maria dell’Isola church.

The main gastronomic attraction is the red onion, the famous ‘Cipolla di Tropea’.

 

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Camigliatello Silano

Camigliatello Silano

Nice mountain city

June 112017

Camigliatello Silano is a small mountain city which hosts several touristic structures such as hotels, sky tracks and small markets. It is the perfect spot to organize trips to the internal areas of the Sila. Thanks to its strategic location Camigliatello Silano is not far from the two coasts of Calabria and is a perfect place to organize holidays that combine both sea-sight and mountain day trips. Camgliatello Silano’s strong touristic point is the gastronomy.

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Scilla

Scilla

Italy's hidden treasure

June 112017

Amazing Scilla is a puzzled of variously colored buildings populating the promontory dominated by the church of Maria Immacolata and the Castello Ruffo (a castle that worked as lighthouse e monastery).

Scilla is composed by two main areas, divided by the port; Chianalea is located on the northern side and represents the fishing district. Chianalea is full of small restaurants, bars and hotels.

Scill’as high point is a rock on the northern side, this place is considered the shelter of Scylla (the monster that owns the Strait of Messina).

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Gerace

Gerace

The Cattedrale of Gerace is a must-see

June 102017

Gerace is a medieval small town of the Ionian coast. Gerace looks at the sea but hides its most beautiful secrets in the interior area; in fact the amazing Cattedrale of Gerace, built during the first half of XI century, stands 10 kilometers inland. This small town is definitely worth of a detour.

 

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Locri

Locri

Hints of Magna Graecia

June 102017

Locri has been one of the most important cities of Magna Graecia. Its story begins during the VIII century B.C. with the arrival, on the shores of southern Calabria, of a group of settlers from Locris, a poor region of the ancient Greece. Due to the importance of its past today is fundamental to visit the archaeological area of Locri Epizephyrii. This area is located in the Portigliola district, a few kilometers away from the centre of modern Locri. The archaeological park contains significant evidence relating to the ancient Greek and Roman city: the remains of Centocamere, the theater, the Temple of Marasà, the sanctuary of Demeter Thesmophoros, part of Greek city walls and a thermal building, known as Casino Macri Museum. The Archaeological Museum of Locri, which is located on the edge of the Marasà sacred area is rich in important finds.

 

 

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Museo Diocesano

Museo Diocesano

It hosts a precious gift from Frederick II to the city

March 302017

Cosenza’s ‘Museo Diocesano’ hosts a huge amount of religious elements collected by the church in the surroundings of the city of Cosenza. It has been opened in 2013 and stands just next to the Duomo, the cathedral of Cosenza.

Amongst the objects exposed in the Museo Diocesano there are a polypytch representing the ‘Annunciation’ (XVI century), the ‘Torquemada Chalice’ elaborated according the canons of Spanish religious art and the ‘Stauroteca’, a reliquary given by Frederick II the Emperor to the city of Cosenza.

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Argentino river

Argentino river

An uncontaminated place of purity

March 292017

The valley of Argentino river is a natural park. This river, which lies in south-western area of Pollino massif, is absolutely unpolluted.

Due to its isolation, its digging into the rocks created an inaccessible natural phenomenon, the flora and fauna of Argentino’s area are something very unique. Visitors can find in this pleasant context specimens of Loricato pine, Black Pine and wild Cherry-tree, as well as local Wolves, Roe Deer, Golden Eagle and Peregrine Falcon.

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MAB

MAB

A walk through the masterpieces

March 282017

Corso Mazzini is the main street of Cosenza. It is a huge car-free boulevard in which the visitors can feel the exciting mix of street activities (shops, food sellers, people chatting) and arts.

This is possible thanks to the MAB, an open-air museum which hosts various masterpieces of great artists like Dalì, De Chirico and Modigliani amongst the others.

This is the list of the sculptures belonging to the MAB:

  • ‘Le Tre Colonne’ and ‘i Bronzi di Riace’, from Sacha Sosno;
  • ‘Il Grande Metafisico’, ‘Ettore e Andromaca’ and ‘i Grandi Archeologi’ from Giorgio De Chirico;
  • ‘La Rinascita della Cultura’ and ‘il Lupo della Sila’ from Mimmo Rotella;
  • ‘La Grande Bagnante’ from Emilio Greco;
  • ‘San Giorgio e il Drago’ from Salvador Dalì;
  • ‘Testa di Medusa’, il ‘Cardinale in Piedi’ from Giacomo Manzù;
  • ‘Ferro Rosso’, ‘Paracarro Grigio Bardiglio’, ‘Paracarro Bianco di Arni’, Parcarro Rosato di Toscana’ and ‘Paracarro Noce di Siena’ from Pietro Consagra;
  • ‘La Testa di Cariatide’ from Amedeo Modigliani.
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Palazzo Arnone

Palazzo Arnone

Cosenza National Gallery

March 282017

The building known as Palazzo Arnone has been built during the XVI century according to the will of an important local family. During the last centuries is has been destined to different public services (it has been a Court, an Archive and a Prison).

Nowadays in Palazzo Arnone is located the local National Museum and the government’s Arts office.

The collection hosted in Palazzo Arnone is very important for those who want to have a proper experience into the southern Italian painting; great works from artists like Pietro Negroni, Mattia Preti and Umberto Boccioni are making this place one of the most important museum of southern Italy.

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Rendano Theatre

Rendano Theatre

A place of culture, peace and beauty

March 282017

The city theatre, named after Alfonso Rendano, is something that really represent the vivid cultural activity of the city of Cosenza. It has been built during the XIX century but inaugurate only in 1909.

During the II world war it has been almost completely destroyed and then rebuilt and given to the city in 1960. During the reconstruction people in charge wanted to respect its original project with the result than now Cosenza has a marvelous neo-classical theatre in which the interiors are totally covered in red velvet.

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Palazzo della Provincia

Palazzo della Provincia

Majestic 19th-century building

March 282017

The building the hosts the headquarters of the ‘Provincia’, the local government, has been built during the XIX century and is a good example of civilian southern Italian architecture.

The ‘Palazzo della Provincia’ lies on the eastern side of XV Marzo square and is, with the theatre, one of the elements of the frame that surrounds the statue of B. Telesio, one of the most important Italian philosophers.

Once inside the building we suggest to visit the cloister and the ‘Sala degli Specchi (the hall of mirrors).

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The Duomo

The Duomo

A diamond in the casket of the Old Town

March 272017

Duomo is the Italian word that defines the main church of a city, its cathedral.

The Duomo of Cosenza is, since 2011, cultural heritage of UNESCO. According to the investigations Cosenza’s cathedral has been built during the XI century; this original building went destroyed because of an earthquake in 1184. The reconstruction took few years and only in 1222 Frederick II, the Holy Roman Emperor, could celebrate its opening. This fact is very important because underlines the deep relationship between the Emperor and the city of Cosenza.

The façade is divided in three parts and three is the number of the internal naves. The painting of Madonna del Pilerio which lies in one of the chapels is a tremendous example of the Byzantine style that was echoing from near Sicily.

Cosenza’s Duomo host one of the first expressions of French Gothic style in Italy: Isabel of Aragona’s funeral monument.

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The Castle

The Castle

One of Federico II's favorite places

March 272017

The Castle of Cosenza lies of the hill called Pancrazio, it has a perfect view over the valley in which Cosenza lies.

Even if this place has been always chose as defensive stronghold, since the Brettii era (local population contemporary of the Romans) and getting to the Normand era under Roger II, Cosenza’s castle will always be linked to Frederik II, the Emperor.

 

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Casa Noha

Casa Noha

To understand the city and its people

March 222017

Casa Noha is an example of a local house obtained digging the rock. It is equipped with multimedia tools which give the visitor the chance to understand how life has been going on in the last centuries in Matera.

Casa Noha is actually managed by FAI (the national institution that aims the preservation of natural environment).

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Bridge on the canyon

Bridge on the canyon

An adventure worthy of a Western movie

March 222017

Crossing the canyon over the Gravina river is an off-track adventure that still remains in the field of totally accessible experiences. The bridge has been built in 2015 and is the perfect spot for those who are looking for a great sight to take amazing photos.

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Domenico Ridola museum

Domenico Ridola museum

Very rich of finds found nearby

March 202017

The façade of Domenico Ridola Museum is decorated according to he Baroque style; this building has been a monastery before being converted into a museum.

Domenica Ridola, who has been a well known doctor of the city of Matera, is the first person who organized the archaeological excavations that empowered the local community and granted them the tools that allowed to re-discover the incredible history of Matera.

The Domenico Ridola museum hosts a wide amount of evidences that go back to the Palaeolithic era.

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Cave churches

Cave churches

Religious buildings built in the rock

March 202017

Cave Churches very typical structures obtained by digging into the rock; visitors can find them in the Sassi zone and also in its surroundings. The cave churches the visitors have to absolutely visit are Sant’Agostino, San Giovanni in Monterrone, Santa Lucia alle Malve and the Madonna dell’Idris church.

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Palombaro Lungo

Palombaro Lungo

Channel pattern under Piazza Vittorio Veneto

March 202017

Palombaro Lungo (large Palombaro) is one of the several subterranean environments which compose underground Matera. The purpose of Palombaro Lungo is the collection and distribution of rain-water.

Palombaro Lungo is a geologically extremely interesting point because it lies in the exact point in which meet a calcareous and a clay fault.

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Case cisterna

Case cisterna

Old houses built in the rock

March 202017

All the underground structures that have been developed in Matera are an endless example of how humans are able to adapt to the environment they live. This is the case of ‘Case cisterna’ which literally means tank-houses. The ‘Case cisterna’ are private housing and a water diffusion network at the same time because of their characteristic canals that bring the water from higher to lower levels.

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San Francesco d’Assisi

San Francesco d’Assisi

The most beloved church in the city of Sassi

March 202017

The church of San Francesco d’Assisi is Matera’s most beloved religious building. The actual church has been built during the XVIII century but before that a cave church was standing on the very same spot.

Just like other local churches San Francesco d’Assisi has been decorated according to the Baroque style characteristic of near region of Puglia.

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Purgatory church

Purgatory church

Church devoted to the worship of the dead

March 202017

It has been built during the XVIII century and is very famous in local oral history because only a huge collective effort made possible its construction.

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Piazzetta Pascoli

Piazzetta Pascoli

One of the most beautiful views of the Mezzogiorno

March 202017

The view that the visitor of Matera can enjoy from Piazzetta Pascoli is amazing: one of the most awesome panoramas in Italy. In this place people are still practicing a social life according to the southern Italy approach to life: they’re coming here to share moments of their days and talk to each other enjoying the beauty that surrounds them.

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The Cathedral

The Cathedral

The main church of the city of Sassi

March 162017

Matera’s Cathedral overlooks the area of Sassi and the wonderful natural context in which it is settled.

The Cathedral has been built during the XIII century; its rose window has got 16 spokes in which is represented the meaning of life according to a circular vision, overlooked by San Michele.

The façade, inspired by Puglia’s Romanesque style, has got 12 arches and columns. On the main gate is represented a Lyon that is going to eat a person (metaphor of the evil that is constantly threatening the good).

Entering the Cathedral after having been observing the humble exteriors is quite a shock due to the Baroque internal decoration.

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San Pietro Barisano

San Pietro Barisano

Among the largest rock churches in Matera

March 162017

San Pietro Barisano is the biggest cave church in Matera. Its construction begun during the XII century. Its main peculiarity is that the part of church visitors can see from the outside is the façade.

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Cave house

Cave house

Housing built in the tuff

March 162017

While everywhere else people were using mud, bricks or wood to build its private environment here in Matera locals decided to carve their living places out of the rock. This is a magnificent example of how humanity can adapt to the environment respecting it and enjoying the opportunities it gives.

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Madonna dell’Idris

Madonna dell’Idris

Rupestrian Church

March 162017

This Church has been built in the rock, according to the typical standards of Matera’s architecture. This religious building hosts a fantastic fresco of Santa Madre dell’Acqua and several other decorative elements from the period between 1500 and 1700.

The Church of San Giovanni in Monterrone is included in this structure and, surprisingly, is totally different under the decorative point of view from the adjacent Madonna dell’Idris.

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San Pietro Caveoso square

San Pietro Caveoso square

Piazzale with breathtaking views

March 162017

This square gets its name from the Church built in the rock that stands nearby. The views on the Murgia Materana Natural Park that San Pietro Caveoso square offers is the best quality of this place in Matera.

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Calanchi

Calanchi

Natural art works

February 82017

Calanchi are a Belvedere Marittimo very typical naturalistic attraction; their particular shape is the result of the action of the wind over the sand.

Calanchi are like mini-canyons and, sometimes, they look like natural balconies.

 

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Convento dei Cappuccini

Convento dei Cappuccini

The place where are preserved the remains of St. Valentine

January 272017

The Monastery of Belvedere Marittimo pays homage to San Daniele Fasanella and has been built at the end of XVI century. San Daniele Fasanella is the Saint of the city. The monastic order living in the Convento is the one named Frati Cappuccini, followers of San Francesco d’Assisi’s doctrine.

The Convento dei Cappuccini is standing on a hill full of massive tree, this characteristic makes this place the perfect spot to spend a day of relaxing reflections. The monks that have been living in this religious place have suffered persecutions along the centuries, sometimes the have been thrown out the monastery, but they’ve always come back to underline their deep relationship with this building.

The main attraction of the Convento dei Cappuccini in Belvedere Marittimo are San Valentine’s relics; the remains of the Saint of love have been hosted in this place since the XVIII century.

Thanks to a restoration that took place during the XX century visitors can now enjoy the original colours of the internal decorations.

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Castle

Castle

Military fortress

January 272017

The Castle of Belvedere Marittimo has been originally built by Normans , around the 11th century, to be a military outpost. Its location was perfect to have a 360 degrees view of the coast, which was the main door for enemies to enter this area.

Only under Aragonese domination this building became a proper castle at the end of 15th century.

The castle of Belvedere Marittimo is a great place to observe the towers, the fortifications and the bastions that have been decorated by many different hands belonging to different socio-cultural backgrounds.

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Murales/Graffiti

Murales/Graffiti

Talking walls

January 262017

Diamante started to host an open-air artistic exposition in 1981. Local, national and international artistic took the streets and the wall of Diamante at the beginning of the summer to transform the wall of the city into massive canvas where to put their feelings.

So we can serenely affirm that Diamante started to host street art exposition way earlier than more celebrated destination all around the world.

 

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Peperoncino Festival

Peperoncino Festival

Festival dedicated to the Red King

January 262017

The first edition of Peperoncino Festival took place in 1992 when the city of Diamante wanted to celebrate the arrival of Peperoncino to the ancient Europe thanks to Cristoforo Colombo’s discovery of Americas just five hundred year before.

This Festival’s aim is to celebrate local gastronomy; the centre of all kind of recipes and food experiences is, naturally, the Peperoncino, the local variety of chilly pepper. In every and each event proposed by the staff of Peperoncino Festival (theatre, music gigs, public lectures) the final purpose is to look for Peperoncino everywhere. The Peperoncino represents the secret ingredient that makes the food we taste, or the life we live, more interesting.

After more than 20 years Peperoncino Festival has become one of the most important cultural events of southern Italy.

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Fiume Lao

Fiume Lao

Charming river

December 122016

Lao river runs from Basilicata, exactly from the slopes of Monte Serra del Prete and, after entering Calabria between the villages of Laino Borgo and Laino Castello, flows into the Tyrrhenian Sea, not far from Scalea, after a journey of more than 50 kilometres. Thanks to its particular shape, that ensures an important flow of water (Lao river has a catchment area of ​​606 square kilometres and an average rate of nearly 10 cubic meters per second) throughout the year and thanks to the wonderful scenery of its location has become a well known destination for passionate people who love of immersion in nature, canoeing and rafting.

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Isola Dino

Isola Dino

Amazing isle standing in front of Praia a Mare

December 122016

Known by the people who love nature for its caves, the Dino Island was purchased in 1962 by Gianni Agnelli for fifty million pounds. However in June 2014 the Court of Paola sentenced the invsalidity of the purchase and the island came back under the ownership of the Italian State. This beautiful island offers spectacular cliffs of 80 meters. On the coast the erosion of limestone has created numerous cavities that host amazing ecosystems. Its biodiversity is absolutely amazing, for example, in addition to the classic Maquis shrubland, visitors can also find the unusual dwarf palm. Its wildlife includes many species of migratory birds, including peregrine falcons. In recent years the island is also a point of reference for scuba divers.

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Arcomagno

Arcomagno

Legendary natural monument

December 122016

This place is so named because of a unique natural arch, carved into the rock by the sea: the great arch Arcomagno in Italian, which leads to a small, silent, hidden beach. This lovely place is characterized by a lagoon crescent-shaped, about 25 meters long, with small gravel pebbles. On the left of the arch is a large natural cave, called Grotta del Saraceno which hosts a small water source; while on the north side of the Arch is located another group of small rocks and stones on which stands another rock arch: the Arch of Enea, named after the mythical Trojan hero who, according to myth, after the fall of Troy passed by this area. Facing the two arches is the Rock of Scorzone and a short distance you can see the Dino Island.

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Grotta del Romito

Grotta del Romito

Magical neolithic shelter

December 122016

The Romito Cave is situated in Papasidero (Cosenza), in a valley that lies on the left sideo of Lao River. The archaeological excavations of the 60’s made possible to establish that the interest of man for the cave dates back to the Epipalaeolithic era. The famous rock carvings that have made famous the Romito are visible to the visitor on the entrance of the shelter. The first is the so called ‘linear signs rock’ and reveals no apparent meaning; it is dated around the year 11.000 BC. The second the one with the portrait of three different profiles of Bos Primigenius. The stylistic attitude of this artistic expression is typical of the Mediterranean area; this is one of the the most joyous expression of Paleolithic Realism in the Mediterranean. The stylistic features of this masterpiece recalls the Franco-Cantabrian Palaeolithic art as well. The graves found in the cave increase the symbolic and cultural value of the site. At the base of the boulder with the bulls there is a double burial with the remains of a young man hugging an older woman. This burial was accompanied by horns of Bos primigenius and flint tools. Another double burial, at the same level, hosts the remains of a man and a woman. While in the inner cave two single burials have been found.

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Grotta del Leone

Grotta del Leone

Awesome marine grotto

December 92016

The name of this cave is due to the presence of a rock that looks very much like a lying lion. This is one of the many cavities present on the coast of the Dino Island.

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Chiesa Anime del Purgatorio

Chiesa Anime del Purgatorio

Amazing canvas on the inside

October 242016

The Chapel of Purgatorio of Tortora’s Piazza Dante Alighieri is characterized by notable symbolic expressions. It is located in an area called mballaturu, dialect word indicating its proximity to one of the towers of the feudal palace. Originally it was located outside the city walls and over time the urban sedimentation has made of it one of the significant elements of urban architecture.

The Church of the Souls of Purgatory was mentioned for the first time in an official document in 1554.

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San Pietro Apostolo

San Pietro Apostolo

Neoclassical style Church

October 242016

The Church of St. Peter the Apostle (Via San Pietro) is the mother church of Tortora. It was built in the late XIII century and after that has been extensively rebuilt in the XVIII century.

The Church of St. Peter the Apostle presents a neoclassical style. Legend about its history relates that the two columns on either side of the main door of the building have been recovered from resources proceeding from the ancient town of Blanda Julia, this element is  the testimony a strong continuity between the past and the present of local architecture.

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Palazzo Spinelli

Palazzo Spinelli

Massive civic building

October 242016

The Palace of Via Cantogrande in Aieta, also known as Palazzo Spinelli, got its actual appearance in 1550, due to renovations operated by Martirano families and Cosentino. Its Renaissance style is the best Calabrian civil construction representation of the whole sixteenth century.

Its outstanding characteristic is the Loggia overlooking the west side of the building, its columns and arches make up an architectural first level effort.

The City Council of Aieta has become owner of this building in 1980 and within a few decades has led to it a splendour never seen before.

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Santa Maria della Visitazione

Santa Maria della Visitazione

XVIII century Church

October 242016

The Church of St. Mary of the Visitation in Aieta, located in Piazza Monsignore Lomonaco, dates back to the XVIth century. The entrance stone portal, which gives the welcome to visitors, has been conceived and created by Gerardo Rea in the second half of the XVIII century.

Its drawing is a Latin cross with three naves, decorated with many works among which stand out Fabrizio Santafede’s Altarpieces, which are magnificent expressions of the transition period between Mannerism and Baroque.

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Torre di Fiuzzi

Torre di Fiuzzi

Spectacular sighting spot

October 242016

The Tower of Fiuzzi stands on a cliff ideal for hosting such a structure. It is a bastion built between 1400 and 1500 and is part of a coastal defence and communication system which aim was to prevent and neutralize the incursions coming from the sea.

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Torre Crawford

Torre Crawford

Gothic and charming

October 242016

The Crawford Tower is a communication and defensive outpost which has been built in 1500. This building, named after the famous US writer Lord Francis Marion Crawford, dominates the Bay of San Nicola Arcella.

The Tower is structured on two levels, connected by a grand staircase and it was suitable to accommodate small garrisons.

The Crawford Tower, like the towers of Fiuzzi and Maratea, was part of a widespread system which aim was to target enemies approaching the coast.

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S. Maria Costantinopoli

S. Maria Costantinopoli

Nice building great location

October 242016

The Sanctuary of Santa Maria of Constantinople was built in 1600. The location is spectacular, since the building sits on a limestone cliff that runs along the river Lao.

Although surrounded by a natural setting the Sanctuary is very close to the urban center of Papasidero; to access to this religious building the visitors should just walk a short distance from the center of the village and then cross the famous Bridge of Rognosa.

Due to its position this Sanctuary has been used in the past as a shelter for infected during the outbreak of plague during the XVIIth century.

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Rito dei Vattienti

Rito dei Vattienti

Easter only for adults rite

October 242016

The main event of the Holy Week of Verbicaro is the rite of Vattienti, held on Holy Thursday night. It may fall into the category of flagellation rites, a sacrificial practice and penitential archaic.

The rite of Verbicaro’s Vattienti goes back to a period when a spontaneous form a religious practices in which physical pain played a fundamental rule was very common.

The first documentation of Vattienti ritual dates back to 1473. After a very large period in which this kind of ritual was considered not congruent to the official catholic system in the 70’s of the twentieth century this collective expression got back to its ancient glory. So Vattienti succeeded  in the challenge to enter well and alive  in the XXI century.

The reasons that live up the Vattienti performance are basically two: the vote for favors received and the will to perpetuate a collective tradition that is based on reasons and details and confidential codes.

Although we can not speak openly of ‘Procession of Vattienti’ (every Vattiente has his rhythm and the paths taken by the protagonists may differ), the local night of Holy Thursday is divided into well-defined moments.

The first of them is the Mass in Cena Dominiche, which takes place in the main church of Verbicaro.

After that we proceed to visit the Tomb of the various churches.

Then people start to sing a ancestral songs in the streets of the town.

After that begins the feast of Vattienti preparing exit into the street.

Once the Vattienti paid tribute to local delights by eating and drinking local products they, wearing red clothes and red handkerchief, get to the street followed by Spruffaturi (those who throw wine on their wounds), and circulate for the old village until they reach a public fountain to wash out the blood that covers them.

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Parco Archeologico Laos

Parco Archeologico Laos

Testament of Greek presence in the area

October 242016

This open air museum lies in Via degli Schiavo 20, in Santa Maria del Cedro. When in 510. C. Greek settlers known as Sibariti were defeated by Crotonian decided to abandon their home on the Ionian coast to find shelter in the Alto Tirreno Cosentino.

This is how Laos, one of the first Greek enclaves on the west coast of Calabria, has been founded.

The importance of Laos from an archaeological point of view (in 1994 has been opened an archeological park in situ) lies in its being a good resource for understanding the urban organization of the Hellenistic period (diagram of orthogonal streets, system water channeling).

Laos very important because it offers us interesting insights that make us able to understand how  the process of integration among the peoples who inhabited the Calabria in general and the High Tyrrhenian coast in particular developed.

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Parco Nazionale Pollino

Parco Nazionale Pollino

Amazing natural park

September 132016

Imagine an area that extends for more than 192 thousand hectares that reaches 2300 meters of height.
Think about it as the greatest gift box in the world; let’s suppose you open it and find in it a wide mix of cultures, from the Ancient Greek to arbreshe, the Bosnian Pine, the wolf and the golden eagle, dolomite rocks and artistic expressions as the Bos Primigenius.
Are you there?
Did you take a look inside?
Are you surprised?
Well, you just received the Pollino National Park!
The flora and fauna that are settled in the Pollino National Park are the result of a long process of integration between the Mediterranean and the Apennine environment.
The Mediterranean vegetation goes along the visitors up to 800-900 meters; at this altitude you can see the Holm oak, Juniper and Myrtle; while going up for a few hundred meters is likely to bump into the five types of Maple of this nature reserve, as well as oaks and chestnut trees.
The fauna living in Parco Nazionale del Pollino gives us lots of surprises both staring straight at our feet or looking towards the snowy peaks.
One of the marks out of Pollino is the presence of a very rare Beetle as well as the beautiful butterfly Melanargia Arge.
Among the endangered species from extinction that can find a safe haven in the Pollino we include the Common and Paludal Tortoise volatile as well as the Partridge.

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Museo Blanda

Museo Blanda

Time travel place

September 122016

The museum of Blanda in Tortora (Corso G. Garibaldi) hosts a decent amount of archaeological evidences discovered during the last decades. The permanent exhibition is divided into the following sectors:

– Prehistory;
– Outdoor settlements and caves with objects dating back to 150,000 years ago;
– The Burials, from the sixth century;
– The occupation of northern Calabria by the Lucani people, composed by goods, weapons and pottery as evidence of this phenomenon;
– The Roman Conquest.
The Museum is hosted in the Palace of Casapesenna, in the old town of Tortora.

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