Crotone is a city in Calabria, Southern Italy. Located along the coast of South Italy, Crotone attracts tourists from all around the country as well as the world due to its panoramic location as well as its classic Italian lifestyle. The city has had a long and eventful history, with several ups and downs, and has now managed to become an economically renewed urban location. The city has been ruled and has been exchanged through several hands; it was first part of the Byzantine Empire and was later taken over by the Saracens in 870 AD. It was later taken over by the Normans and then the Kingdom of Naples.
Attractions of Crotone
The cathedral was originally built in the 9th-11th century but has been rebuilt and restored several times since then. The church has a neo-classical architecture while the interior is heavily decorated in Baroque style. The baptismal font dates back to the 12th century and the image of the Black Madonna was brought here from the East when the church was first built.
Castle of Charles V
The Castle of Charles V dates back to the 16th century and houses the town museum as well as several remains that were found in the ancient site of Kroton. The remains of the walls and several watch towers are worth looking at; they were all mainly built in the 16th century but still stand undamaged to this date.
Le Castella is a walled hamlet on an island in Capo Rizzuto, close to Crotone. Its origins are not clear, but it was probably there in 500 AD. The castle can only be visited on foot since there is only a narrow strip of land that connects the island to Crotone. The castle dates back to several centuries and the architecture is quite noteworthy.
National Archeological Museum
The National Archeological museum is one of the best museums in the city and is a must visit for anyone who is interested in archeology. The museum houses several ancient remains that were found in the region during the Magno-Greek Civilization and it showcases and provides a lot of information of life during that ancient civilization.
Capo Colonna Archeological Park
The Capo Colonna archeological park is located by the coast in Crotone and is an important site to visit since it has several important historical remains, some of which date back to centuries and are quite important to the history of the region. The Park has the remains of an ancient temple that has been here since the V century BC, which is quite a rare sight. This same area also has a few remains of defensive towers and watchtowers which can also be visited.
The Pescheria District in Crotone is known to be the historic center of the town. The district has several historic buildings that adorn the streets. The architecture of the buildings is quite noteworthy and classic to this region of Italy. The district is perfect to explore at length on foot and the narrow alleys and the cobblestoned streets are quite charming in their own way.
Getting to Crotone
Crotone has an airport, Sant'Anna, which is served by several chartered airlines, so reaching the city by air is possible. Crotone also has a railway station; Crotone can be travelled to from the neighboring cities by train, which is usually quite reliable and punctual. Most of the tourism traffic is through road: the 106 Ionica is very widely used as well as the Salerno-Reggio Calabria highway. Crotone also has a port, so you can reach the city through a yacht or use various ferries that provide services to Crotone from the neighboring towns and cities.
Moving Around the City
Moving around Crotone is quite easy and uncomplicated due to its public transport system. The main source of public transport in the city is the public buses, which are widely used by the locals as well as the tourists. The buses are quite punctual and reliable and cover most of the important destinations in the city; bus routes and day passes can be bought locally.
Stay and Accommodation
Crotone has several hotels and hostels in all budget ranges for visitors. The hotels range from high range to budget accommodations and prices generally depend on the tourist season. If you are planning to stay in the city for a longer time the best option is to rent an apartment, there are several different options available in terms of location, apartment sizes and rentals. Some of the best hotels in the city are Hotel Villaggio Costa Tiziana, Hotel Palazzo Foti and Alberto Helios hotel.
Eating Out in Crotone
Crotone has several different restaurants that offer various options to visitors in terms of cuisine, ambiance and drink choices. Most of the restaurants in Crotone are small and cozy, serving local regional dishes made from the freshest local produce and sea food. There are also several restaurant that serve high end gourmet cuisine that serve dishes from France, Spain and various Mediterranean dishes. Opting for the local dishes and fresh grilled sea food is the best option in Crotone, if you want to experience the local gastronomical delights. Like everything else in Crotone, the food here too is simple and wholesome. Some of the best restaurants in the city are Ristorante La Sosta da Marcello, Ristorante La Pignata Di Proietto Giuseppe, Minniti, Ristorante Sparviero Due and several more. All of these restaurants can be booked ahead of time.
Shopping in Crotone
Crotone does have a few shopping malls and stores that sell branded clothing and merchandise; however, the best thing to do in Crotone is to visit the local markets. The old quarter of the town has various winding alleyways that have small local shops that sell craft and trinkets of locally made varieties. The early morning fish market in Crotone is also worth a visit since it is so colorful and vibrant. Crotone is a good place to buy handicrafts and terracotta products that are locally made as souvenirs.
BY Irene Tischenko