Calabria

Calabria is the "toe" of Italy’s boot in the south. Calabria is surrounded by the Tyrrhenian and Ionian Seas and the region of Basilicata. Frankly, it is an unexplored tourist region and one that is worth much more than a car’s ride down the coast (to get to Sicily). The main towns of the region are Cosenza, Catanzaro and Reggio Calabria. The region is very rugged and mountainous except at the shore where the hills slope gently down to the sea. The beaches are a big draw as they are uncontaminated and uncrowded — virtually unexplored. The medieval villages at the coast offer a great and varied holiday. The mountains are heavily forested and hold plant treasures only found in the Calabria region. The mountains also offer great ski and hiking vacations. Calabria has many traditional villages where artisans make lace, terracotta and wrought iron. Many of the men and women in these villages dress in folkloric/traditional costumes — it’s their way of life (and it’s a treat for the traveler). The food of Calabria is simple peasant food and utilizes mushrooms, vegetables, chestnuts, cheeses, hot peppers, salami, grains, figs, fruits (mainly citrus) and olives. Some of the dishes you’ll find on menus are caprese, rosamarina and always fresh fish. The wines of the region are fresh and good tasting. Do try the Bivongi, Greco di Bianco, Pollino and Scavigna.

 


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