Spezzano della Sila in Calabria

In the province of Cosenza, Spezzano is a charming, simple town that can surprise you.

Ana Patricia in Spezzano della Sila, in Calabria
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Introduction

At 800 meters above sea level, Spezzano della Sila is a small town, little known by tourists, but it has the power to surprise its visitors. Shall we learn more Spezzano della Sila in Calabria? Here at Travel to Calabria you make the trip of your dreams!!! Are you staying in Calabria? LOOKING FOR A HOTEL IN CALABRIA? Check our suggestions! Click here!

A little more about Spezzano della Sila in Calabria

Spezzano is a city that tells an ancient story: its first inhabited center dates back to the 10th century and was founded by Cosenza refugees, who were fleeing the Saracen barbaric attacks. At the time of French domination, the population of Spezzano chose to side with the Bourbons and, in 1799, shortly after the administrative reorganization ordered by General Championnet, Spezzano received the title of municipality and was included in the province of  Cosenza. Although it was separated into Spezzano Grande and Spezzano Piccolo, this division did not last long and, in 1927, they were reunited in a single town, being named Spezzano della Sila. Today the city has about 4,500 inhabitants and a worth-visiting historic center. Shall we tour Spezzano?

1)  Spezzano della Sila in Calabria: VISIT THE ST FRANCIS SANCTUARY AND THE CHURCH OF S. MARIA DELL´ULMO

We start in the historic center. In summer, the center is very busy, by both locals and tourists, and the city is super lively! In the historic center, the main attraction is the St Francis Sanctuary. The sanctuary is, chronologically, the third of the churches built by the saint, after Paola and Paterno, but it is the first in the world in the Franciscan order of Charitas. The Sanctuary has a simple wooden statue of the Saint, a work by local artists dating back to the 1700s. There you will also find prestigious works of art, such as wooden busts in the 17th-century Baroque style, paintings from the sacred work of Frà Bernardo di Celico and Santanna’s works such as “Escape to Egypt”, “The Nativity” and “The Coming of the Magi”. Reasd also: what Are The Ten Places You Must See In Calabria?

The Via S. Biagio or Pedalina

Via S. Biagio or Pedalina was the first inhabited place in the city, because, there, you find a water source called “frisulu”, which means ‘place rich in water’. The name S. Biagio came about because, legend has it, that in this place the first inhabitants of the city found an effigy of St Biagio, and it was because of this discovery that they built a church dedicated to the same saint, choosing him as patron of the village. The church dedicated to the saint was the first built in Spezzano and the commemoration of the saint takes place every February 3rd. Inside the church, you can admire various works of art such as a wooden statue dedicated to the saint himself, the hat with the stone baptismal font and the altarpiece in the main altar. To this day, legend has it that, when heavy snow falls in the city, the saint is touching his own beard.

The Church of S. Maria dell’Ulmo

In the same area is the oldest and most fascinating building in the city: it once belonged to the Bonifacio family, today it belongs to the Lecce brothers. In the nearby S. Maria district, you will find another very interesting place: the old church of S. Maria dell’Ulmo, which now functions as a courthouse. Read also  Enogastronomic Itinerary In Calabria.

2)  Spezzano della Sila in Calabria: VISIT THE PALMIERI PALACES

Another interesting neighborhood in the city is San Marco, where you can see beautiful and historic buildings: the Palmieri palaces. Keep walking along Via San Marco, towards the convent of San Francesco, and you will soon see the first building, which is on the left of the square. The building is square and occupies an area of ​​one thousand square meters. On the other side, in St. Mark’s Square, is the other building, where the garden of the Palmieri lords is located.

3)  Spezzano della Sila in Calabria: VISIT THE LAKE CECITA

Other interesting attractions in the city are its archeological areas: impressive heritages discovered on the shores of Lake Cecita and dating back to the Neanderthal era. Between the end of the Neolithic and the beginning of the Copper Age (3800-3300 BC), the entire Sila was occupied by farmers and anglers who explored the ancient lake basins (Arvo and Cecita).

4)  Spezzano della Sila in Calabria: VISIT CUPONE

Near Lake Cecita, be sure to visit Cupone. Cupone is an area located along the homonymous river and the area has a massive presence of larch pine, in addition to being a den of environmental conservation. The Cupone Visitor Center is an environmental education center with nature trails, wildlife observatories, museum, geological and botanical gardens. In addition, it is accessible to the disabled and blind, with everything explained via panels and audio files. All very well thought out and organized. The educational route of the Cupone Botanical Garden goes through 350 meters and offers us a beautiful view of the Sila Mountains. There, you can interact with 115 native species of the mountain flora of Calabria – from Potentilha to Astragalo da Calabria – arranged on the ground or in small spaces for demonstration. Kids love it!

5)  Spezzano della Sila in Calabria: VISIT THE “I GIGANTI DELLA SILA”

Another very interesting point is the Nature Reserve “I Giganti della Sila”. Also called Fallistro Nature Reserve, it is an area surrounded by the purest protected nature since 1987. The park is famous for housing the famous larch pines, the “Giganti della Sila”, which are huge trees over a hundred years old. The trunks of these majestic trees call our attention, forming an impeccable natural colonnade. The trees can measure up to 45 meters in height and have a diameter of about two meters; they are always often compared to North American redwoods. In this reserve, there are 56 pine trees, in addition to wild apple trees, beech trees, chestnut trees, poplars and mountain maple trees.

Golden Tips

For those who want to ski: Camigliatello Silano ski resort (Mount Curcio)

Opened in the winter season 2001-2002, the Mount Curcio cable car is the most modern in south-central Italy. It can transport 1800 people per hour and the station facilities are modern and efficient. The resort has two ski slopes and a cross-country ski slope. The two front tracks are blue and red, covering a distance of 4.3 km, with an excellent team of monitors. In 2019, the integrated ski pass was used for the 2 ski resorts in the area: Camigliatello and Lorica.

For those who want to take a steam locomotive tour: Treno della Silla

With a delicious journey that starts in Moccone, passes through Camigliatello Silano and takes you to San Nicola, it is ideal for those who LOVE different tours! Needless to say, the little ones LOVE this tour, don’t they? Attention: it doesn’t work all year, so I suggest that, before organizing your trip, check the availability of the tour on the official website, which you can see here! And buy tickets in advance, as they sell out super-fast!


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Conclusion

For those who want to get to know a little different part of Italy, I invite you: come to Spezzano della Silla, you will be surprised!

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