According to an ancient
legend, Tropea was founded by Hercules, when he returned after completing one of
his 12 labours. According to one of many historical versions, Tropea was founded
by Pompeo or Augustus, who were fighting a naval battle near the coast.
The city is now divided
into two parts: the ancient and the modern one. Among the various
characteristics of the ancient part are the portals, the old buildings
(XVIII-XIX) and lots of churches, for example the church of S. Maria dell'Isola
and the Norman Cathedral.
The first one was
so named because it was completely surrounded by the sea and for that reason
it was the destination for many hermits. During its history, this church has
suffered many transformations also as a results of a past earthquake, which
struck Calabria's coasts.
The same is true for the Romanesque-Norman
Cathedral (XI-XIII) that has also undergone trasformation during the
centuries. Inside the cathedral there is an icon of uncertain origin that
represents the Madonna of Romania , who is the patron saint of Tropea. In
the aisle on the right there is a fascinating crucifix by an unknown
artisan. Flanking the Cathedral's entrance are two unexploded bombs, which
date to the Second World War. It is said that the Madonna of Romania
prevented the bombs from exploding.
Nowadays Tropea is
the destination of many tourists, who come from all over the world,
especially in summer. Once the visitors have seen Tropea's white beaches and
crystal clear sea, they return regulary for their holidays. Many of them
houses from professional estate agencies here in Tropea.
In summer, Tropea
lives at night, offering a wide choice of pubs, pizzerias and discos. The
city is invaded by the young and young-at-heart, who crowd the main square
and the main street "Vittorio Emanuele", important meeting places in the
centre of the city. Believe it or not, this happens every night from July 15
to August 25! And don't forget the
Festival in September!