Tropea, together with Rossano and Gerace, represents Calabria’s most important area of historical interest. It is here, where recent discoveries have revealed evidence of the Neolithic, that art and culture steeped in more recent Byzantine Angevin and Aragonese discoveries can be viewed in a seventeenth/eighteenth century building that has its origins firmly rooted in ancient Greek and Roman settlements.
Scholars and philosophers of Tropea, such as Pasquale Galluppi, have testified as to the intellectual and cultural upheavals that during the Renaissance, with the Accademia degli Affaticati (Academy of the Weary) already linked Tropea with Venice, Perugia, Ferrara and Siena.
According to a well known English publication “The Sunday Times”, of the twenty famous beaches and holiday resorts spread across Europe and the UK, Tropea is the number one beach, in terms of beauty.
Top 10 Italian Seas (5 Sails from 2002 al 2005) ; In 2005: Classified 1st by Il Vacanzometro (an Italian magazine’s ‘most popular holiday resort’ classification) ;
In 2007: Came 1st in the Top 20 European beaches; In 2010: Came 14th in the Top 25 locations in Italy chosen by Europeans according to Trip Advisor visitors.
The historic town centre is full of churches dating back to different times in history (Norman Cathedral, S. Francis of Assisi, St. Mary of the Snows and of the Annunciation etc) and picturesque aristocratic buildings packed full of treasures and precious furnishings, all excellently preserved.
On the outside of these buildings (ancient dwelling places of the nobility) it is possible to admire the eighteenth century balconies (perched high above the sea) and the imposing gateways at their entrances.
Everything is surrounded by a maze of tight alleyways that open onto marvellous squares that suddenly look out over the sea below or onto the lush green terraces.
Many of the aristocratic buildings were built overhanging the sea and at some incredible heights, with windows and balconies that opened directly onto one of the most beautiful corners of the Mediterranean.
Tropea also has a modern tourist port equipped with all modern facilities and it is just a short distance from the historic town centre. The port is one of the five ports of Hercules, selected along with four other Mediterranean ports as a result of the legend mentioned earlier.
It is from here that boats, captained by expert mariners, will take people on trips to Capo Vaticano and other unmissable locations along the coast that features transparent waters set against a backdrop of white sandy shores from where it is possible to enjoy some breathtaking panoramas.