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Reggio Calabria’s Costa Viola coastal strip is a major attraction for sea and diving buffs

Thursday, 10 March 2022 10:02

The Costa Viola is a strip of land in the province of Reggio Calabria that stretches for about 35 kilometres and includes the towns of Palmi, Bagnara Calabra and Scilla. It has become a major attraction for tourists who love the sea as well as for trekking and diving enthusiasts. The name Costa Viola was given to the area in ancient times, and it certainly represents the unique colour of the coastline at sunset when the cobalt-blue sea acquires deep hues as it reflects the light of the setting sun. 

Coastal terraces with orderly vineyards

The beaches along the coast have many cliffs and caves, but also an uncontaminated ecosystem and the seabed, which has all the magic of a tropical destination, confirms the Costa Viola as a place not to be missed. Other distinctive elements are the terraces overhanging the sea with orderly vineyards, and the typical Mediterranean scrub vegetation covering many of the slopes.

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Bagnara Calabra and its seafaring 

It was the Normans who decided to build Bagnara Calabra, a town whose history is linked to fishing and in particular to swordfish. History buffs who wish to get a complete overview of the events that have left their mark on the town over the centuries will find many documents shedding light on the past in the Church of the Confraternity of the Rosary. 

Traditional swordfish fishing from May to August

Like Palmi, Bagnara Calabra has several kilometres of beach, green cliffs and terraces and its maritime tradition is celebrated every year between May and August with the traditional swordfish fishing. Tourists who choose the Costa Viola for a few days of relaxation can also admire the inlets and the natural Grotta del Monaco and Grotta delle Rondini caves in Bagnara. As far as historical monuments are concerned from the Ruggiero Tower, a building on the rocky 'uCucuzzo mountain, there are particularly stunning views. 

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Scilla and its famous stone cathedrals


Another enchanting village along the Costa Viola is Scilla, whose beauty has earned it the name Pearl of the Coast. The Ruffo Castle, a fortress dating back to the 14th century in the village of Chianalea, dominates the scene in this seaside resort. Another famous attraction are the Secche di Scilla stone cathedrals. Scilla's beaches extend for several hundred metres and alternate between coarse-grained sand and gravel, creating a fascinating visual effect. 

Crystal clear waters and popular beaches

The seawater, as in other parts of the Costa Viola, is crystal clear and one of the most popular beaches is the Spiaggia delle Sirene, which stretches between Punta Pacì and the Ruffo Castle. If, in addition to relaxing by the sea, your intention is also to visit the main monuments, in addition to Scilla’s castle don’t miss the Church of the Immaculate Conception and the Baroque Church of the Holy Spirit. 

Caves with fossils, stalactites and stalagmites

From the town you can easily reach the Tremusa caves, in the centre of Melia. On the walls of these caves you will find fossils, the so-called Shells of Pecten, dating back to the Pleistocene, as well as stalactites and stalagmites. If time permits then Borgo di Chianalea is ready to surprise. Called the Little Venice of the South, this village consists of little houses built directly on the rocks which, in ancient days, were inhabited almost exclusively by local fishermen.

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