PIZZO & SURROUNDINGS
Pizzo is one of the most beautiful fishing villages in Calabria and enchants with its historic town centre, a labyrinth of narrow streets and squares, countless trattorias, the characteristic tartufo ice cream parlours and kilometres of sandy beaches. Situated on a steep cliff mountain in the southern part of the Gulf of Sant'Eufemia, you have a breathtaking view of the sea in many places. Don't miss enjoying a delicious tartufo ice cream on the Piazza della Repubblica - Pizzo is considered the birthplace of the world-famous ice cream speciality. A visit to the famous Piedigrotta cave church and Castello Murat is highly recommended.
THINGS TO SEE IN CALABRIA
The pleasant climate, the beautiful colours of the sea water, the rocky coasts interrupted by sandy beaches, the wild, mysterious landscape, the hearty and genuine taste of the local cuisine and the evidence of the ancient past make Calabria a unique region, far away from mass tourism. We have listed a few of the most famous attractions for you; much more comprehensive information can be found on the official website of the Calabria Region Tourist Board.
BEACH & SEA
Calabria inspires with its multitude of beautiful beaches and romantic bays. With over 750 km of coastline, the region offers an incredible variety of different types of beaches and is an absolute paradise for every bathing and beach holidaymaker. The most beautiful beaches on the west coast are at Capo Vaticano. Amidst the rugged, steeply sloping rocky coastline are many small picturesque sandy bays with crystal-clear turquoise waters, where you can easily find an idyllic spot even in high season. Those who prefer a long and wide sandy beach will find their luck in Tropea or Zambrone. To make the choice a little easier, we have put together a few recommended beaches for you.
Die kalabresische Küche ist geprägt durch die Landwirtschaft im gebirgigen Hinterland. Die von dort ansässigen Bauern hergestellten oder geernteten Produkte wie Oliven, Zitrusfrüchte, Auberginen, Zwiebeln, Peperoncini, Schweinefleisch, Käse oder Pilze ergeben in Kombination mit der allseits beliebten mediterranen Küche eine ganz spezielle Variation an Rezepten und Gerichten. Die verwendeten Produkte stammen fast ausschließlich aus der lokalen Landwirtschaft, die sich aus der lange bestehenden Bauern- und Fischerkultur entwickelt hat. Der Fischfang hat in Kalabrien eine lange Tradition, weshalb sich v.a. Schwertfisch und Thunfisch in vielen kalabresischen Gerichten wiederfinden. Berühmt ist auch die 'Nduja, eine sehr scharfe streichfähige Wurst, die gerne als Brotaufstrich, auf Pizzen oder in Pasta-Saucen verwendet wird. Die süßlichen roten Zwiebeln aus Tropea und der Peperoncino sind ebenfalls ein wesentlicher Bestandteil der kalabresischen Küche und in fast jedem Gericht zu finden. Die hervorragende kalabresische Küche bietet aufgrund der Variantenvielfalt für jeden Geschmack das Richtige und ist ein ganz besonderes Highlight bei jedem Kalabrien-Urlaub!
Wine growing has a long tradition in Calabria. Even before the Romans, the Greeks cultivated wine in Calabria. The grape varieties Gaglioppo, Greco Bianco and Trebbiano, which still characterise the wines from Calabria today, probably originated from them. Calabria stands for high alcohol red wines and is known for the Cirò. Light and nutrient-poor soils, together with the Mediterranean climate, allow the vines to thrive in the wine-growing region of Calabria. This combination is the best prerequisite for first-class wines. Along the coast, the vines are usually spared strong temperature fluctuations. While winters inland can be cold and harsh, the weather in summer is very hot and dry.
Due to the hot climate, Calabria is clearly a red wine region. Around 90 percent of red wines are cultivated. About a quarter of the total vineyards are planted with the red grape variety Gaglioppo, which is the most important grape variety in the southern Italian wine-growing region. It is followed by Greco Nero and Greco Bianco. The red Cirò is a speciality of the wine-growing region of Calabria and is mainly made from the Gaglioppo grape variety. Cirò Bianco, made from the Greco Bianco vine, is one of the best white wines in southern Italy.
White wine varieties: Greco Bianco, Ansonica, Chardonnay, Malvasia Bianca, Mantonico Bianco, Moscato, Malvasia, Trebbiano and Zibibbo.
Red wine varieties: Gaglioppo, Greco Nero, Barbera, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Nero d'Avola Calabrese, Sangiovese, Nocera, Nerello Cappuccio and Nerello Mascalese.
Cirò in the province of Crotone is the most important wine-growing area in Calabria. Other wine-growing areas are Greco di Bianco, Terre di Cosenza, Lamezia, Melissa, Scavigna, Savuto, Sant'Anna di Isola Capo Rizzuto and Bivongi.
To give you an idea of the variety of wines on offer, here are a few selected wineries in alphabetical order:
More wineries from Calabria are listed here vinocalabrese.it.
STROMBOLI & AEOLIAN ISLANDS
Stromboli is one of the most active volcanoes in the world and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Depending on the weather, the silhouette of Stromboli is clearly visible on the horizon from Pizzo. Along with Lipari, Vulcano, Salina and Panarea, it belongs to the group of Aeolian Islands.
With its 930 metres, the stratified volcano is an extraordinary sight and one of the absolute highlights of a stay in Calabria. From Vibo Marina and Tropea there are regular scheduled boats to Stromboli - depending on the weather, a crossing takes about 1.5 to 2 hours. The crossing from Vibo Marina to Stromboli is currently offered by Liberty Lines, tickets and the current timetable can be found here. In Tropea there are various companies that also offer trips to Stromboli.
You can marvel at the regular eruptions of Stromboli from the boat or go ashore. It is also possible to climb Stromboli as part of a guided tour. The basic requirements for the 3-hour ascent are hiking boots and good stamina. The unique natural spectacle can be observed very well, especially in the dark, because then you can see the lava fountains very well.
Visiting the other Aeolian islands is also worthwhile and worth seeing. The shipping companies offer special day tours so that you can visit the various islands as part of a tour.
The Sila, Pollino and Aspromonte National Parks and the Serre and Valli Cupe Regional Parks are proof that Calabria has a very different face besides paradisiacal beach resorts. Calabria's oldest national park, Sila, is a natural beauty, often referred to as Calabria's green lungs. In addition to its many characteristic villages, exquisite hospitality and many outdoor opportunities, numerous animal species have found their ideal habitat here. The wolf in particular, which was hunted for centuries, is now the symbol of the park. In winter it snows a lot in the Sila National Park, in some years up to three metres. At Camigliatello Silano there are chairlifts and ski slopes, and you can go cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.
The mountain landscape of the Pollino is a unique experience for both adventurers and those seeking peace and quiet. In Italy's largest national park, you can look forward to thrilling waterfalls and mystical caves in pristine landscapes. The many watercourses and deep gorges invite you to take part in sporting activities such as rafting, canyoning and canoeing. The Aspromonte National Park, with peaks reaching almost 2,000 metres, is full of splendid, impressive landscapes and paths where you can enjoy ever-changing, boundless views. You pass through areas where the sea and the mountains are so close to each other that they seem to be a single environment to the observer. The Serre Regional Nature Park stretches between Aspromonte and Sila. Besides impressive wild forests, including Bosco di Stilo, the park is crossed by numerous watercourses that form spectacular waterfalls, among which the Marmarico waterfall of Bivongi is the most impressive. The Valli Cupe Regional Park offers enchanting waterfalls and canyons, centuries-old trees, botanical rarities and monoliths and, with its wealth of precious flora and fauna, occupies a prominent place among the natural beauties of the Italian peninsula.