The small town of Siderno stands in the heart of Locride, at the center of a wide flat stretch between Roccella and Locri.
The city is made up by the old town, on a hill, and known as Siderno Superiore and the modern part, called Siderno Marina, developed near the Costa dei Gelsomini (Jasmine Coast) and the renowned area of tourist seaside resort area of the Locri.
Siderno ranks among the most beautiful and clean coastal areas of Italy listed in the “Guida Blu” (Blue Guide); the guide published by Legambiente and Touring Club Italiano.
In summer, a great number of tourists visit the area, attracted by the large beach and promenade. The Municipality of Siderno ranks among the most beautiful and clean coastal areas of Italy listed in the “Guida Blu” (Blue Guide); the renowned guide published by Legambiente and Touring Club Italiano.
Siderno Marina's promenade has become a point of reference for the large numbers of tourists who flock to the town in summer; the promenade offers superb views that stretch out from Punta Stilo to Capo Spartivento. At Siderno, the beach obtains a distinct hue under the banner of simplicity: It is equipped with the basic services of first aid, food & beverage as well as safety. The many private beaches alternate with free public beaches of an equal size.
Siderno boasts numerous points of interest, mainly located in the old town centre of Siderno Superiore, where visitors may also find: the churches of S. Nicola di Bari (that preserves an altar in Baroque style and some precious canvases of the Neapolitan school of the XVII century) and the church of S. Carlo Borromeo (church of St Charles Borromeo); and last but not least, Palazzo Falletti with a splendid portal declared national monument and other interesting buildings. In Siderno Marina, we find: the chiesa di S. Maria di Portosalvo, the Albanian villa that was home to the senator of the Kingdom, Giuseppe Albanese and where members of the royal Savoia-Aosta family stayed. Additionally, there are monuments to the Fallen Soldiers and Sailors, created by the famous sculptor from Siderno known as Correale. Siderno also boasts places of contemporary interest such as Piazza Risorgimento with its beautiful fountain surrounded by majestic lions, the two squares at the side of the town and the Town Hall next to the YMCA; a leisure venue preferred by young people. Siderno is a very active town, in fact during the year a large number of renown events are held, including the “Notte Bianca”, Siderno’s Carnival and rites of Holy Week including Easter Monday with the feast of the Easter cake, which in the past saw the participation of citizens and thousands of people who flocked from outside town to grab a piece of the longest “sguta” (braided Easter bread) in the world. Every year in summer, Siderno hosts concerts, shows like the “Notte Arcobaleno,” “Festa del Turista” (Tourist Fair), the International Folklore Festival and the “sagra del pesce” (fish festival).
Tourism represents the main source of income for Siderno; considered the pearl of the Jasmine Coast. The favourable climatic conditions as well as the vast beach, pristine clear sea, seaside resorts, hotels, guesthouses, campsites, and apartments, can accommodate tourist flows (both national and foreign) all year-round. Siderno's beach stretches up to the cliffs of Isola di Capo Rizzuto. The waterfront, rich in greenery with flowerbeds and gardens, is equipped with basic services of first aid, food & beverage as well as safety. It is the town’s pride and joy. Sights to see include the Monumento al marinaio (Monument to sailors), carved in 1990 by Giuseppe Correale, which is one of the art symbols that can be found throughout Siderno. The Monument is located on the waterfront and made from bronze; it is formed by a column with three solid sections which display the life of sailors. At the base of the monument is the sea and the vortex which widens upwards symbolises the dangers that sailors face every day during their trips out to sea. The three seagulls that crown the mainmast represent his travelling companions, while the sail shows an image of the moon. The Church is located in the town centre and overlooks the “Corso della Repubblica”. The building, in the style of the Renaissance, has three naves with a front entrance and two side entrances. The bell tower is 33 metres high and has four bells, which represent the various souls of Siderno's inhabitants. The large bell-tower north represents the faith of the people, the bell to the east that of fishermen, the bell south that of traders and, finally, that to the west, the faith of the simple and humble people who work the fields. The apse boasts a monumental niche, with the wooden statue of the Madonna di Portosalvo. Under the niche is the old altar with six bas-reliefs, in which the relics of St. Hilary and St Prosper were sealed.
Siderno Superiore is a village of medieval origins fortified during the XVI century, whose old town centre is characterised by ancient houses and narrow streets, as well as elegant buildings of the XVII and XVIII centuries with barrel-shaped wrought iron balconies and stone portals. Siderno Superiore, due to its architectural wealth, always draws the interest of Italian and foreign visitors. Among the most distinguished, is the English Edward Lear, who visited Siderno in 1847 and the writer Milena Milani who in 1989 dedicated a passionate article in the magazine Bell'Italia. The old town centre of Siderno boasts buildings of ancient splendour and an urban layout typical of all inland towns of the Locri, with narrow alleys and small balconies. In Siderno, during the XVII-XVIII centuries aristocratic buildings of great architectural interest were built as well as churches which in their construction, which survived restoration works, are reminiscent of the southern Baroque style. From the balcony of piazza San Nicola visitors can admire impressive surroundings with sea views; an amphitheatre was built at the foot of the piazza where during the summer season musical and theatrical works take place. Still today the town has a road whose route, which divides the are into two parts, dates back to the late Roman period. Some stretches reveal remnants of Siderno's town walls which date back to the XVI century.
Church of St Nicholas of Bari
This is Siderno Superiore's oldest and most important church and its establishment is related to the emergence of the town; for this reason, it may be regarded as a small museum. The building was clearly re-built with a late renaissance inspiration. In the centre, preceded by a short staircase, the stone portal opens up adorned by columns with Ionic capitals. A small niche of the portal contains a marble statue of the fifteenth century portraying St Nicholas. The interior of the church has a basilica floor-plan, three naves divided by two rows of pillars in local stone that support four round arches. Behind the altar, in the end part of the deep apse, we find the grandiose architectural pediment that adorns the painting of the Madonna della Consolazione (Our Lady of Consolation) with frame in gold leaf. The sides of the large altarpiece feature fabrics from the XVII-XVIII century of the Neapolitan workshop depicting the Martyrdom of St Jeroe, the Blessed Sacrament, the Assumption of the Madonna, the Adoration of the Magi, St Vincent Ferrer and the Madonna of Graces. In addition, the church preserves the marble statue of Saint Catherine of Alexandria.
Siderno offers to lovers of the great outdoors the possibility of walking breathtaking trails between olive groves, pine and eucalyptus trees. The dam on the Lordo stream adds to the experience; this is an imposing structure that delimits a lake with a surface of about 70 hectares. The dam is to be considered the most imposing construction ever built in Locri; a construction that serving as a barrier in the river, creates a natural environment of considerable impact. On sunny days, the dam becomes the preferred destination of local painters, who do not miss the chance to capture on canvas the nuances of the effect of sunlight on hills, flowers, the creek, the small lake and the antique houses of the Old town centre. Now considered a true oasis, the area is the most ideal place for exploring trails, on a mountain bike or simply hiking, and for picnics surrounded by greenery.
Traditional food includes pasta dishes with legumes (chickpeas and beans) or pork meat sauces, meat or fish main courses and sweets with almonds, walnuts and honey. The traditional Siderno meal always includes a starter with home-made cold cuts, soppressata, olives, peppers, tomatoes in oil. The renowned “a Pizzata” bread also deserves to be tasted.
Piazza Vittorio Veneto, Siderno
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