Stilo & the Byzantine Church

We had spent the night at one of the endless sand beaches of this region, just in front of the archaeological site of Scolacium. Our next stop was at Stilo, where a little church is an exceptional remnant of the time, when Calabria was part of the Byzantine Empire.

Unfinished Norman basilica with impressive dimensions

The site tells the story of a city of Magna Graecia, which became a prosperous Roman colony called Scolacium.  The foundation dates back to the 6th-5th century BC by Greek colonists from Athens.  The life of the colony ended around the VII-VIII century AD, when the population moved into the mountains of today’s Squillace. The imposing Norman basilica suggests the importance of the place even in medieval times. Inside the park a museum showcases the results of the excavation campaigns.

Forum of Scolacium with unique brick pavement
3,500-seat theater
At least one kept his head
Colossal forearm in bronze
(we will remember this arm when we are in Reggio)

Stilo lies just a couple of kilometres from the coast above a river valley. The village itself is lovely, but it is most visited because of a little church from the Byzantine period.

Stilo – with a Norman castle on top of the hill
We had to buy the tickets online for some reason
Cattolica di Stilo

The Cattolica was built, when Calabria was part of the Byzantine Empire from 965 until 1071. The name derives from the Greek word katholiki, which referred to the churches provided with a baptistery. It is one of the most important examples of Byzantine architecture in Italy.

The interior was once entirely covered with frescoes.

In a couple of days, our Green Pass will expire, therefore we use every chance we have to enjoy Italian gastronomy.

Fruit of the Day

We will continue to follow the coast, and will reach Reggio di Calabria next – more on the following post!

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