Slow Tourism in Calabria
© Regione Calabria
Feb 16, 2024 10:58 AM
© Regione Calabria
Feb 16, 2024 10:58 AM
Experiencing slow tourism in Calabria is like diving back in time, in the suspended atmosphere of natural landscapes between sea and mountains and authentic villages, where local communities offer hospitality, traditions and local products.
Every season is good for discovering the hidden beauties of the region and for planning a slow holiday in Calabria. In spring, for example, it is possible to witness some amazing blossoms, taste the first fruits of the season, go on guided excursions through the woods of 3 National Parks and numerous reserves and protected areas, or simply wander through villages and towns to discover local traditions.
Calabria is the triumph of "slow tourism", a journey of the soul that brings together past and present, looking to the future and inventing new forms of everyday hospitality.
Many are the young and "returning" realities that in recent years have developed virtuous forms of experiential and eco-sustainable tourism, linked to the rediscovery of ancient trades proposed in a modern key, making use of cutting-edge technologies and new languages.
From silkworm breeding in San Floro (CZ), where the ancient practice of silkworm breeding is once again practised, with the production of fine yarns, to guided visits to wineries and vineyards; from donkey rides to educational farms for the whole family, via glamping and residences in historic and charming dwellings.
From slow tourism to the Slow Food circuit, the step is short: just consult the branded agri-food products and those with a PAT (Prodotto Agroalimentare Tradizionale - Traditional Food Product) label to independently organise a series of taste itineraries to discover local dishes of the oldest tradition.
Tourist-environmental quality labels are a good indicator for discovering "slow living" places in Calabria on one's own.
These are locations that favour the traveller's point of view over that of the "tourist", focusing on the visitor experience with the aim of introducing niche realities, dimensions of everyday life and living resilience, excellence of food and craftsmanship.
Alongside the national brand The Most Beautiful Villages of Italy and the Orange Flag villages (Touring Club), there are individual realities and alternative circuits through which it is possible to get to know the "slower" face of the region, far from the mass tourism circuits.
1. Riviera and Villages of Angels
This proposed slow itinerary in Calabria takes us along the coast of the Middle Ionian Sea, between the provinces of Catanzaro and Reggio Calabria, in the stretch that goes by the name Riviera and Borghi degli Angeli.
A riviera a few steps away from the mountains, offering the natural beauty of the sea and forests, interspersed with weights and medieval villages that offer visitors a range of unforgettable experiences.
The beaches of this Riviera are the natural habitat of Caretta-Caretta turtles, which nest in the fine sand every year, giving nature lovers the exciting spectacle of hatching.
Among The Most Beautiful Villages in Italy we find Badolato, famous for its history of welcome and hospitality and today revitalised by the presence of foreign citizens and the variety of active holiday proposals (grape harvest, cooking courses, excursions, yoga, workshops, etc.). Under the same brand, Stilo, the "City of the Sun" of the theologian Tommaso Campanella, with the Byzantine jewel of the Cattolica church; Bivongi, the "Village of Longevity", famous for its quality of life, Bivongi DOC wine, the Greek Orthodox monastery of San Giovanni Theristis and the Marmarico waterfalls.
2. The Wine and Oil Routes and Slow Food Presidia
Another way to enjoy a slow holiday in Calabria is along the Strade del Vino e dell'Olio (The Wine and Oil Routes).
Calabrian wine and oil are a real source of pride. After all, tasting the territory through the scents, flavours and experiences that are released on the palate is the most pleasant way to get in touch with the innermost spirit of Calabria.
As many as 10 Wine Routes are registered in Calabria by the National Association of Wine Producers and Wine Tourism (Assovini):
Equally tasty is the tour of the "Oil Cities" in Calabria, surveyed by the National Association of the same name:
Finally, the itinerary from north to south to discover the 11 Slow Food Presidia in Calabria, the most mouth-watering way to taste a region at a slow pace, enjoying the beauty of the landscapes, the people and the specialities of good food.