Sunday, February 18, 2018

The Beautiful Town of Gerace, Calabria, Italy



I'm back from a fun week away in Disneyworld, Florida, with my daughter and son-in-law and granddaughter, followed by a week of recovering from the flu! Even though I had gotten a flu shot this autumn, and as much as I used hand sanitizer and antiseptic wipes to clean everything while I was away, I still succumbed to the virus. Thankfully, I realized immediately that I had the flu and went to my doctor who prescribed Tamiflu medication, which decreased its severity.  Also, thankfully, no one else came down with it.

Now I'm back to reminiscing about my husband and my trip to Italy last summer, and the beautiful and historical town of Gerace in Calabria, Italy, that sits 1,640 feet (500 meters) high cliff, and six miles, (10 kilometers)  from the Ionian Sea coastal town of Locri. It has been called one of the prettiest villages in Italy. 

(All photos and photo collages in this post will enlarge if clicked on)



We drove up the winding roads towards the city along with my husband's cousin, her husband and children, and grandchildren to spend a few hours in the late afternoon, early evening.  We visited Gerace years ago, on a visit to Italy with our children, and we were looking forward to seeing it again. During our first visit, we toured its churches--it has quite a few remarkable ones worth seeing, but this visit was going to be more about enjoying its scenery and to have a gelato break.


The panoramic views from all angles of Gerace's high precipices are stunning!  Miles of olive and citrus groves and the mountainous terrains of Calabria stretch out towards the horizon from one side, while the other side...


...displays a distant view of the Ionian Sea and the ancient city of Locri. Everywhere is the odor of wild fennel, jasmine, and bergamot. In fact, 90% of the world's supply of pure citrus bergamot comes from the Reggio Calabria province of Calabria.


One of the most remarkable sights to see in Gerace is the ruins of a 10th century, Norman Castle. Gerace was originally developed by inhabitants from Locri in the 9-10 century when they were defeated by the Saracens, Over the following centuries, it fell under the control of many different groups such as the Byzantines, the Normans (including Robert Guiscard in the 11th century) and the Angevin.


Please click on to enlarge

This Italian/English placard describes the history of the castle and its construction and layout.


It was hard not to look at the castle and imagine what life was like in Gerace many centuries ago!



We walked around the town center, over the cobblestone streets, and through winding alleys.


Gerace is a popular tourist destination and we passed many open-air restaurants ...


..and enotecas.


There was much beauty to see.


A poem in Italian about Gerace's ancient beauty, and wild capers that we saw growing along the walls of the city.


We watched the lights of the city come on at dusk and enjoyed some delicious gelato together in the town piazza before we returned home.  It was another memorable visit to Gerace. It is definitely one of Calabria's gems!


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54 comments:

Joyful said...

Beautiful scenery. I love the open areas where people are sitting outside enjoying their refreshments.

Angie said...

Pat - I just love everything about this - the light on the hills, the architecture perched on the cliffs, the open-air dining, and GELATO! Thanks so much for taking us with you! (Nine inches of snow yesterday, so Italy is looking pretty appealing right now!)

The French Hutch said...

Hello Pat, I'm so sorry to hear you had the flu in spite of precautions. It has been terrible in our town but luckily my husband and I have escaped it so far. I so enjoyed this post of your trip to Italy. I am especially interested now as we have a trip planned in the spring. We've been there several times but each time is special. I have not seen this side of Italy, it is stunning! Your photos are beautiful and it must have been amazing to spend time with family in such a beautiful country. Thanks for sharing your trip. I hope you feeling much better now. Have a wonderful week..........

Ruth Hiebert said...

It is so interesting to see these sights.Thanks for sharing.

Lady Fi said...

Wow - what a gem of a town! Lovely.

Glad to hear you're recovering from the flu.

Mersad said...

I really love those old narrow cobblestone streets. The views from up top are really amazing! Thank you for sharing your Italy trip at "Through My Lens". Love it!

Maggie said...

Dear Pat, I hope that you are over the flu and feeling better. I really enjoyed reading the next installment of your Italian tour through Calabria, the sights, the food and the history are all fascinating to me and make me long to see it all for myself.
Take care and Happy MM!
Maggie.

Villrose said...

A beautiful place! Could sit there with some refreshments...

eileeninmd said...

Hello Pat, what a beautiful tour and lovely town. I like the cute outdoor cafes. Gorgeous views of the castle and citrus groves and the village. LOvely series of photos. Happy Monday, enjoy your new week!

Snap said...

The beautiful countryside, the narrow streets -- idyllic! You are an excellent tour guide for us armchair travelers. Glad you are over the flu -- no fun. Happy Monday!

Cathy Keller said...

What a wonderful post. And oh,I think gelato should be served at every meal! I an constantly amazed by construction in ancient times. It just takes may breath away! Just seeing Jerusalem today in the old city has left me breathless! Glad you are feeling better and my best to you!

photodoug said...

Pat, wonderful travel log. Thanks for sharing.

podso said...

Wow that's too bad you got the flu. They are still suggesting flu shots though they don't seem to be working. The photos are beautiful--what a love place to visit and now the wonderful memories.

Linda W. said...

What a beautiful place! Love all your photos - made me feel as if I was there too.

Sarah said...

Pat, I'm sorry to read that you were hit with the flu. It is so rampant this year, and the flu shot seems to have made little difference for those who get the virus. Hope you are on the mend.
I enjoy seeing your photos and reading more about your trip to Italy. Keep sharing!

Carol @Comfort Spring Station said...

There is something about old castle ruins that fascinate me. Enjoyed your tour of the town.

ellen b. said...

Beautiful scenery with so much history. You are great travelers.
I do hope you are 100% soon and that virus is left behind! Sorry the sea of humanity at Disneyworld shared that with you.

Tom said...

...a sunny spot with a view! Thank for stopping by. Enjoy your week.

A Colorful World said...

What wonderful trip with your husband last year! Love your photos! Sorry you had the flu...just an fyi Black Elderberry does exactly what Tamiflu does, only more naturally! Check it out if there's ever a next time.

Su-sieee! Mac said...

Gosh, so beautiful! I would love to see the Ionian Sea from Italy. You've taken me back to my one trip to northern Italy many years ago. I remember walking the narrow windy roads of the village. I felt like I was walking in a picture book. That was delightful. Thanks for sharing your photo and stories. :-)

jeannettestgermain said...

Thank you for your comment about the Garden of the gods, Pat:):) Yesterday I had difficulty, to make my comments because the 2 blogs I have now, so hopefully my comment will "get through now. Italy is sooo addictive. Your photos make me want to go back this summer! Thank you for bringing back happy memories, and it's quite educational for All Seasons! Thank you! Have a happy week.

Lydia C. Lee said...

WOW. That looks so charming! I know a lot of Italians with the surname Gerace - I've just worked out why...(I always thought it was an anglified name from when they moved here)

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

I know it is a beautiful place to visit and I love the photos you've shared. It's been fun to see the family photos you are including too. Hope you feel lots better now. Take care of yourself my friend. Hugs!

Mother of 3 said...

It sure does look amazing! I'm sorry you came down with the Flu; my three boys and husband all had it and were just miserable for days. At least you came down with it AFTER vacation. I hope you'll be sharing about your Disney trip too. I love reading travel posts and Disney is one of our favorite destinations.

NC Sue said...

Stunning! You've shared some gorgeous shots!
Thanks for linking up at https://image-in-ing.blogspot.com/2018/02/some-more-from-nasher-museum.html

Felicia said...

what a gorgeous place. i love the cobblestone streets and the old world feel of the buildings.

Photo Cache said...

What a charming town. I would love to walk the cobblestone streets. I went down with flu as well, still recovering, and also had flu shot every single year.

Worth a Thousand Words

Fun60 said...

I like the idea of a gelato break. Hard to avoid its history as every street and alley way seems steeped in it. The scenery looks magnificent.

Phil Slade said...

There's something very special about those Mediterranean town with their narrow tree-lined streets, places to sit and just take in the view. All the sunshine helps of course. Thanks for visiting my blog Pat.

Lorrie said...

I'm imagining the warmth of the sun on those stone walls and craving a little bit of it on this cold morning. You captured me with your words describing the "odor of wild fennel, jasmine and bergamot." It sounds so lovely. I had to look up what enotecas meant!
So sorry you caught the flu in spite of your precautions. It's been a bad one this year. I hope you are soon fully recovered.

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Thanks for taking us on your journey Pat. I can see the benefits of just perusing the streets and alleyways, sitting around a cafe and having a gelato. Hope you are all over your flu now. Thank goodness you got it on the flight home, not while you were at Disney World.

Ruth Rieckehoff said...

It is the first time I hear about this town but I am glad I got to learn about it from you! It is so beautiful! Enjoy learning about Italy. My husband got the flu two weeks ago. I have started to feel a bit bad but I think I am not getting it for now. My body is fighting some sort of sickness and I hope I do not get anything.

Jan Robinson said...

Eating in the open air in Italy is something I really enjoy. I love seeing all the chairs set up ready to enjoy the beautiful night air. Quite often I wish I was sitting there, but we don't often do it. Still a lot of people do!

DougPhoto2009 said...

Pat, mangiare fuori. Thanks for sharing.

Karen (Back Road Journal) said...

Sorry to hear that in spite of your precautions that you still got the flu. Loved your posts on this area of Italy, it is a spot that we have not been to before.

carol l mckenna said...

Great series of photos of a beautiful place ~ glad you are over the flu too!

Happy Week to you,
A ShutterBug Explores,
aka (A Creative Harbor)

Al said...

That looks awesome - such a history that we're missing where we live.

Pietro Brosio said...

Wonderful views of Gerace, lovely collages!
Greetings from Turin!

handmade by amalia said...

Just the sort of place I like. How nice to get lost in the little streets, soak the atmosphere and stop for coffee and biscotti when the time is right.
Amalia
xo

diane b said...

It must have been fun exploring this beautiful ancient town.

Ela said...

Beautiful scenery in this wonderful historical place!
It's always nice to see photos from sunny Italy!
Greetings

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

My goodness, Pat, Gerace is beautiful! I'm intrigued by the Norman Castle. Also the land which gives bergamot to my favorite Earl Grey tea. The photos of the family all together is priceless. How wonderful.
I'm so glad you are feeling better. Do take care. ♥

Michelle said...

What a wonderful trip this must have been. The views are gorgeous and to have family to enjoy it with, that is icing on the cake. Thank you for linking up today!

krishna said...

The castle is amazing.. I also love to imagine the life when I saw castle or first or any historical building.. it is amazing that centuries back that was vibrant place with many people..

Please visit: http://from-a-girls-mind.blogspot.com

Spare Parts and Pics said...

Absolutely gorgeous, and so rich in history!! Thanks for sharing these great memories.

Mandy 'n' Justin said...

Mmm… gelato!

Calabria looks absolutely gorgeous. I'm so jealous! And it's even better that you got to explore this town with your children and grandchildren!

Ramona Demian said...

It is, indeed, a beautiful city!

Sharon said...

Your photos make me want to go to Italy this minute!!! And yes, Disney is so fun but germs abound. Hope you are feeling good now :).

Roz Corieri Paige said...

Glad you are on the mend from the flu bug that went around this year! It is always so fun to go back to photos and reminisce about a wonderful trip such as yours to Calabria. Thanks for taking us along again!

Jeanie said...

I really appreciate the history you share along with your gorgeous photos. It looks like a little bit of heaven in southern Italy. And I really do love how you describe the fragrance in the air as well. Oh, how wonderful!

Glad you are feeling a bit better. Flu, colds, any bug is so annoying!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

This has been so interesting to me -- I knew very little about Italy, outside of Rome and Florence so it has been a fascinating learning experience.

Jemma@athomewithjemma said...

I so enjoy your photos here on your blog and on Instagram! You take us on the most informative, delightful, educational and inspiring adventures. I would so love to journey to Italy. So blessed to have family to share the joy of it with too.
Jemma

indah nuria Savitri said...

What a beautiful city! I haven't been to this part of Italy and we were traveling a lot to Italy while we were living in Geneva before. Happy to go back to this country and explore more! I just follow your blog by the way :)

Jeanie said...

This has been such a fascinating trip, Pat. I'm so glad you decided to share the photos and details even though it was awhile ago. I just love seeing these fabulous sites. What glorious history! And your photos, as always, are magnificent.