Why not Reggio?
During a trip in the south of Italy, you can experience great dilemmas - common sense tells you to come back, but admiration does not allow you to do so. Because why not stay here one more day? After a little thought, you can head west and walk towards the beautiful village of Reggio di Calabria . Since Italy on the map reminds so many people of a shoe, then the journey to Reggio will be on the inside of the foot. But what a beautiful foot it is!
We have already noticed its beauty in historic Lecce . Now, going west, we will pass a few towns with the atmosphere of a typical Italian town in the air. There is no other way to describe it. Driving through Francavilla Fontana , a man twists his neck to see if Sophia Loren appears from around one corner, so that - as in the scene from the movie entitled "Italian marriage" - move proudly and attract the attention of all men. Apart from the memories of the classics of Italian cinema, the town has several monuments, palaces and monuments. It is worth paying attention, among others on the Porta del Carmine , the 17th-century city gates resembling the triumphal arch, or the Chiesa del Rosario with its imposing dome. Looking at some of the city's monuments (and not only this one), you can get the impression that in many cases their beauty is located in the domes - they are quite modest on the line of sight, without decorations, so to be amazed you have to raise your head high or look from a distance.
“Citta dei due mari” - the city of two seas
After leaving Francavilla Fontana we reach Taranto . History connects him with the brave Spartans, and his past was turbulent even without it - he fought with the Athenians, Carthage, and later with the Romans, to survive the British bombing after hundreds of years. Fortunately, despite the destruction, it still has several monuments and attracts thousands of tourists each year. It tempts with the beauty of sacred buildings such as Cattedrale San Cataldo a Taranto - a cathedral with a richly decorated interior. It also tempts with an ideal location on the peninsula. It lies on the Ionian Sea, and on its other side there is a bay, the so-called Little Sea. Seafood lovers come to this place from afar - it is here that the famous Tarantine mussels are grown.
After visiting the city, we move on. We pass Policoro , a tiny tourist town with a lot of charm. If someone would like to stay here, they will easily find a suitable place. He can choose, for example, Il Campeggio del Policoro Village (v. Aristarco 1), offering 110 places: in cottages, motorhome pitches and a camping site. A group of 3 people will pay for a night here, depending on the season and the standard of the place for a motorhome, from 15 to 35 EUR / day. It comes alive in the summer, when tourists from all over the world come to it to enjoy the wide and sandy beach .
Trebisacce lungomare and Italian thermal baths
Regarding the beaches, we drive almost right next to the coast all the time, thanks to which the trip is full of amazing views. Trebisacce is particularly impressive with its coastline. A wide beach stretching for a few kilometers, delightful sand and endless azure sea - it seems that this is the attraction of every local town. However, both the coast and the town have something that makes thousands of tourists choose this place every year.
Driving further, we will visit Spezzano Albanese , a town famous for its hot springs. Patients suffering from diseases of the digestive system come here, for which the waters from the Acqua della Grazie spring are effective, and for which the therapy with the healing water from the Fonte Thurio spring is very effective. Mud treatments that treat skin problems and rheumatic diseases also attract tourists to Le Terme di Spezzano Albanese.
On the way, we will also pass the beautiful city of Cosenza, where many monuments await us. The Hohenstaufen Castle, built in ancient times by the Saracens, is definitely worth seeing, the Rendano Theater building, a public library and a mysterious cathedral, probably built at the beginning of the 11th century, is also interesting.
Reggio - on the tips of the fingers
And finally we reach our destination. According to tourists and locals alike, Reggio di Calabria has one of the most beautiful promenades in Italy. While strolling around the Lungomare Falcomata , you can admire the magnificent view of Sicily unfolding before your eyes. By the way, it is worth visiting Palazzo Campanella, the seat of the Regional Council, where there are two famous statues considered the symbol of the city - Bronzi di Riace . Bronze sculptures were discovered in the 70s of the last century, and their origin is estimated at around the 5th century BC. After the reconstruction of the local National Museum, they will be returned to it along with other exhibits. With each passing year the city has more visitors, but Reggio has not lost its amazing atmosphere of an old resort where time flows slower and people enjoy life.
At the very tip of the Italian shoe, about 22 km from the city, is Ruffo Castello . It stands on a high, steep rock that cuts sharply into the sea. Today this place is called the Strait of Messina, and in the past it was known as the Strait of Scylla - the home of a monster that, together with its Sicilian neighbor, Charybdis, was waiting for passing ships. The legend is easy to explain today when you look down at the swirling water. The monsters of old were born out of the whirlpools and the violent mixing of sea currents with the waters of the strait.
Rest at the seaside
Tired hikers can take advantage of several overnight options. One of them is the campsite located about 20 minutes from Reggio - Camping Villaggio Magna Grecia (Via Vecchia Provinciale 101). An adult person will pay here from 7 to 10 euro / day, the same is the price of a motorhome space. It is located right by the sea, and if someone still lacks water, they can swim in the pool. There is also a bar, restaurant and pizzeria on site.
In such an area, you can spend not a few days, but the entire vacation. Sea, palm trees, sun, friendly people and great food - what more could you want?
To get from Lecce to Reggio di Calabria you have to cover about 500 km on roads with breathtaking views.