Reggio Calabrias Staying Power
Posted on February 20, 2013 by sguese
Reggio Calabria enjoys it views. The main launching point for ferries to Sicily, the city gazes out on the Straits of Messina. Once a proud ancient Greek city, over the years, earthquakes haven’t been kind to Reggio Calabria. However this town shows no signs of fear, especially on the carefree evening passeggiata. At the southern tip of the Calabria region, Reggio Calabria is often a launching point toward Sicily. However once you explore this town you will find many reasons to stay.
Museo Nazionale della Magna Grecia
If you miss the Museo Nazionale della Magna Grecia while in Reggio Calabria, you have missed one of its greatest treasures. The museum holds one of the world’s finest examples of ancient Greek sculpture, the Bronzi di Riace. The two exquisite bronze statues were discovered on the seabed near Riace. It is believed that the sculptures depict the Greek obsession with the body beautiful. The perfect form is more godlike than human, said to date back to around 450 B.C.
Festival dello Stretto
Many Italian towns host their own special festivals throughout the year. In Reggio Calabria, the main event in early August is the Festival dello Stretto. For the event, you will be able to hear the traditional music of the South. If you can’t make it for the festival, Reggio Calabria hosts other festivals throughout the year.
Reggio Calabria’s fortified side is perhaps best seen the Aragonese Castle. Its roots date much further back than just to occupations by the Spanish, Austrian and Bourbon dominations. The Aragonese Castle of Reggio Calabria stands on the site of a former Greek acropolis. It would go on to be a strategic defense point for the town with its two towers and watchtower from the 15th century. The castle was finally taken over by Giuseppe Garibaldi’s forces in 1860.
Reggio Calabria’s Cathedral
A 1908 earthquake was hard of Reggio Calabria’s main cathedral. However it would be restored to its former Neo-Romanesque glory. The faced is covered in statues of saints Paul and Stephen. Aside from its beautiful colored windows, be sure to notice the S.S. Sacramento chapel. It marvels with its baroque style and multicolored marble.
Travelers can’t forget Reggio Calabria’s connection to the water. The city sits along the Straits of Messina, best appreciated on the Matteotti Promenade. Also known as Via Marina, the promenade is a popular walk for locals and visitors. Gabriele d’Annuzio once called this stretch the most beautiful kilometer in all of Italy. Matteotti Promenade offers views of the Straits of Messina, Etna and the Peloritani mountains.
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