Tropea is the smallest town in the Vibo Valentia province, it’s located on the Tyrrenian side at the foot of Mount Poro and it’s one of the most highly regarded and sought-after travel destinations of Italy. Tropea is a majestic and austere city, it rises above the rocks and overlooks the sea: from here you can admire the enchanting cliffs of Formicole, Pizzuta, San Leonardo and Isola Bella.
The old town centre of Tropea is one of the most interesting in Calabria with buildings of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Tons of alleys to explore, some accessible with difficulty, squares with a medieval appearance, incredible terraces overlooking the port and the sea.
There are, in fact, many balconies and panoramic viewpoints from which you can enjoy an unbeatable view of the wonderful coast: Largo Migliarese overlooking the beach of the Rotonda, the rock San Leonardo and Isola Bella, or the viewpoint of Largo Duomo, from where you can see Marina di Tropea, the hills on the right and left, the long jagged coast of Parghelia and Zambrone.
One of the icons of Tropea is the church of Santa Maria dell’Isola. The church is located on the top of a small and evocative strip of land, jutting out towards the sea, at the foot of the sandstone cliff on which rises the city of Tropea. This church was built in the late-medieval style by the Benedictines but it was modified afterwards several times and and in the Renaissance period became a Latin basilica.
The facade is very characteristic, it is composed by three majestic portals with round arches, while under the arcades you can admire frescoes depicting events related to the history of the cenobium. Inside there are the remains of a marble sepulchre of the fourteenth century, perhaps attributable to the master of Miletus or to one of his students, and several statues of fine workmanship.
In addition to the church, on the island you can visit a garden full of Mediterranean plants, flower-beds and there are benches located in various places, from where you can admire the sea in a truly indescribable perspective.
Lovers of archaeology will also be able to see the remains of necropolis and Greek and Roman buildings dating back to three thousand years ago, found at the small port of Tropea, while lovers of good food can taste the local specialties based on the typical “red onion of Tropea”