02 Mar Cariati things to see and do
The characteristic medieval village of Cariati since 2006 has been included among the most beautiful villages in Italy. Easy to get: only 4 Km from CORTE DEI GRECI Resort & Spa.
Cariati has a very well-preserved historical center: surrounded by city walls with massive towers. Walking through its narrow streets you may breathe the flavours of the ancient times.
Visit and discover Cariati – We suggest you make a route, which begins crossing the Bridge, where once a time there was the drawbridge. Here you may enjoy an enchanting view of the inhabited center below, having as a background the blue Ionian sea of Calabria. Then continue along the city wall, starting from the Annunziata Tower to get to the panoramic viewpoint where take a rest admiring the panorama. The historic center of Cariati is the ideal place to do long summer walks.
Another corner is worth a visitis the Balcony of Spezieria, which takes its name from the nearby tower, and which is accessed by a climb called by the inhabitants of the city “u lavinari ir’ a vadd”. From the balcony, if you turn yourself to the sea, your gaze moves toward the hills full of olive groves.
Continuing your walk you reach the main street Via XX Settembre, once called Via Duomo, because there is the Cathedral of San Michele Arcangelo, a beautiful and rare example of neoclassical church with the seventeenth-century bell tower. Here you see the civic tower with the clock built 1904 as well. Beside the cathedral is the 17th-century bishop’s palace, whose construction, begun by Bishop Gonzaga in 1649, was completed by bishop Gerolamo Barzellino (1664-1688). On the same course are other churches of the same period.
Before leaving the village of Cariati, on the main street you can admire the seminary building, built by will of the Bishop Gonzaga in the first half of the seventeenth century. This majestic building has on the façade the coat of arms of the Mantuan family and is located on one of the eight towers.
Passing Porta Pia you go out of the center and out of the city wall. About 500 meters far, there is the Cariati national monument: the church of the Friars Minor Observant or Santa Filomena, dating back to the 15th century, in late Gothic style. The church was part of the complex belonging to the Franciscan Friars of the Order of the Minor Observant. Nowadays within the walls of the old convent there is the municipal cemetery.
If you are in Cariati Marina in May you may assist to the feast of the most venerated saint of the village: San Cataldo bishop. During the procession, the bust of the saint is brought first on shoulder, then by boat to the sanctuary, where he remains all summer.
You will see some people walking behind the Saint for devotion or grace: some of them are barefoot and surrounded by ropes, while others carry the “majo”, a pole full of “fusiddi” and adorned with ribbons and flowers.
On August 16, San Rocco is celebrated with a characteristic procession.
The statue is loaded onto a trawl-net and led to a long stretch of sea from the vascellero to San Cataldo. During the passage of the saint on the sea, tourists greet him by preparing gorgeous fireworks.
There is much more to be said about Cariati Marina, but it is great to let the tourists discover by themselves the authentic traditions of Calabria and the link with the past of Cariati.
As a popular saying of Cariati says “un si poni scordar l’usanzi nostri, l’ami mantenir, sinnò tutt si perda.”