Discovering Caccuri, among The Most Beautiful Villages in Italy

The village of Caccuriani and its historical-artistic beauties
KR-Caccuri-Borghi[Infofly]

© Regione Calabria

Art and Culture

Feb 15, 2024 9:09 AM

Among The Most Beautiful Villages in Italy in the province of Crotone, Caccuri, a medieval village of ancient origins perched around its panoramic castle, is worth a visit.

Rich in hidden beauty and one of the most important places of literary culture in the region, Caccuri welcomes us to the green hills overlooking the Neto Valley.

Let's take a walk through its historic centre and enjoy together the best this little jewel of the Calabrian Middle Ages has to offer.

What to see in Caccuri

We climb to the top of the hill on which Caccuri stands, a proud outpost of the Crotone hillside, in the Presila territory, overlooking the overhangs towards the Ionian Sea.

Intrigued by the peculiar "skyline" that draws the contours of a village clustered like a crib, gathered around an imposing tower and its trapezoidal-shaped manor, we reach the heart of the village and discover the traces of a fascinating history.

Accademia dei Caccuriani

Here, everything tells of a noble past that saw important families come to power: Ruffo, Cavalcanti, Barracco.

The palaces overlook the historic squares and the Villa Comunale, at the foot of the fortress, a park characterised by the presence of strikingly shaped limestone rocks sculpted by the hand of nature, in perfect harmony with that of man.

We enter Caccuri Castle, an imposing building with a 17th-century appearance but Byzantine origins, probably defending the Neto Valley. The trapezium plan with a central courtyard punctuates a series of interior rooms, which 18th century inventories describe as rich in frescoes, sumptuous furnishings and valuable paintings.

Caccuri
Regione Calabria

Today, the highlight of the interior is the Palatine Chapel, a single hall with the coat of arms of the Cavalcanti family in the archway, and an original painted wooden coffered ceiling. The main altar, with its acanthus leaf decoration, the central altarpiece depicting Saint Barbara, and the collection of 17th-century paintings of the Neapolitan School are remarkable.

Among the places to visit in the village is the splendid Badia di Santa Maria del Soccorso, the monumental complex that includes the former Dominican Convent, the church of the same name and the Chapel of the Congrega del S. Rosario, a real gem of artistic heritage as it is the seat of plenary indulgence and embellished with an 18th-century azulejos floor tile.

Caccuri
Regione Calabria

Caccuri is also home to 3 Basilian monasteries, Santa Maria della Paganella, dell'Abate Marco and di Cabria, and the Shrine of San Rocco, on the edge of the town centre near Porta Piccola and the ancient city walls.

What to do in Caccuri

The atmosphere of times gone by in the village of Caccuri finds its fullest expression during the medieval and folk festivals that take place at different times of the year.

The village is known for being the seat of the Caccuriani Academy, the cultural association that every year, usually in August, awards the winners of the important Caccuri Literary Prize, one of the most eagerly awaited literary events in the region.

Accademia dei Caccuriani

What to taste among the typical dishes of Caccuri?

Obviously the renowned sardella (or rosamarina), the spicy creamy fish spread that can be enjoyed on a slice of homemade bread, as offered by some of the village's historic bakers, or as an ingredient to flavour other dishes.

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