The region of Calabria is located in southern Italy. Calabria is bounded to Sicily and Basilicata. The coast line of Calabria is on the Ionian Sea and the Tyrrhenian Sea. The region is spread over an area of 15,000 sq ft. The capital of the region is Catanzaro and the two other main cities in the region are Cosenza and Reggio Calabria. The economy of Calabria is based mainly on agriculture, which is based mainly on the cultivation of olive trees.
In Calabria, the main benefit of shopping is that there are plenty of good options available, from old fashioned outdoor markets to modern malls. Also, the prices of the products in the region are lower in comparison to the northern regions, which is quite beneficial. There are also many specialty stores, departmental stores, shopping arcades and malls in the main cities of the region where visitors can find almost anything that they need.
Typical Products to be found in Calabria
Calabria is known for its excellent cuisine and its many food products. Those who are travelling to the region should especially purchase the packed food products for which the region is famous. Calabria is known for its preserved food items so visitors would find plenty of meats and vegetable preserves which have been preserved in locally produced olive oil. The cold cuts and sausages in the region are especially famous like the Nduja. On the coast line visitors would find cured fish like cod, sardines and swordfish.
Calabria is also known for its many good quality desserts and sweets like nzudda and scalidde which are available throughout the region in most bakeries and food stores. Local specialty products are the pecorino cheese, caciocavallo cheese, liquorice and pignolata. There are also many vineyards in the region that produce many important varieties of grapes. Although most people are not aware of Calabrian wines, the region has many vineyards that date back to the Greek age. The main wines of the region are Donnici and Ciro which are made from white Greco grapes and red gaglioppo grapes.
Outdoor shopping in Calabria can be a lot of fun since they offer an opportunity to visitors to purchase good quality authentic local handicrafts for next to nothing prices. The same handicrafts would be available in the local shops for high prices as souvenirs. These flea markets are held either annually or once a month but they are definitely worth a visit.
The largest market in the region takes place in Soverato every month on the last weekend. This large flea market has more than 50-60 vendor stalls. In this market visitors can find local paintings and pictures which have been made by artisans of the region. Usually, these are available at quite low prices. In Cosenza, every month on the second Sunday a large flea market is held. In this market, visitors would be able to find good quality antiques and ornamental objects for home decoration.
In the town of Crotone too, there is a large market in Piazza Duomo with around 100 stalls which is held each month on the first weekend. Here, visitors can find plenty of handicrafts, antiques and knick-knacks to carry back home as souvenirs. In Reggio Calabria the flea market is held in the month of September and in Vibo Valencia, the market is every year in August.
Shopping in Catanzaro
Catanzaro is the capital of the region and also the capital of the Catanzaro province. Catanzaro is quite a large city and there are plenty of places in the city where visitors would be able to shop. The city has departmental stores, some local chain stores, food stores and malls where visitors would be able to find almost everything that they need. Apart from that, the old town of Catanzaro is lined with several ancient looking small shops that sell everything from handicrafts and souvenirs to the local specialty food products like the pecorino cheese, cold cuts, salami and the Calabria local olive oils. The wine shops in Catanzaro have many local Calabria wines as well as wines from the other regions of Italy.
Shopping in Cosenza
The province of Cosenza is another important province in the region and the city of Cosenza is one of the biggest cities in the region. There are plenty of good places in Cosenza to shop including a handful of departmental stores and malls. Visitors can purchase Calabrian wines from some of the wine stores in the city as well as a few locally made cheeses like pecorino. The weekly food markets in Cosenza have some good cold cuts and salami and also plenty of fresh produce. Visitors can also purchase various types of extra virgin olive oil in Cosenza from the food stores, most of these are made from the olives grown in the region; however, olive oils from other regions can also be bought from the stores.
Shopping in Reggio Calabria
Reggio Calabria is one of the main cities in Calabria and is known to be an important shopping center in the region. There are plenty of shopping streets in the city which are lined with boutiques and shops selling clothes, bags and shoes. The older town has more traditional shopping options and many old stores selling handicrafts, wooden artifacts, pottery and several other knick knacks. Reggio Calabria has a few malls where visitors would even find foreign brands, electronic items and other products.
The province is famous for its chili peppers, which is very widely used in the local cuisine and is available in all food stores. Pork products like nduja, filetti and soppressata can also be bought. The local favorite is the rosamarina, spicy sardines and extra virgin olive oil. Also, visitors would be able to find plenty of preserves in the region like preserved tuna, aubergines, mushrooms and tomatoes along with plenty of other pickled vegetables. Nduja is a must buy since it is a very famous local specialty.