Morano Calabro, a natural nativity scene among the Pollino Mountains

morano-calabro-turiscalabria_02Surrounded by its unique geographical features, Pollino dominates the sky thanks to the location of the old town center that is perched on a conical-shaped hill, standing out in the valley of the Coscile River.

Let’s talk  about Morano Calabro, one of the most beautiful villages in all of Italy, earning the Orange Flag from the Touring Club Italiano and included in the list of European destinations proposed by the European Commission as a good example of sustainable tourism. Also cited in the Calabria Marco Polo Guide, the small village immediately makes an impact on the visitor for its peculiar urban conformation, dating back to the Roman and medieval times, giving the illusion that the homes are attached to one another, creating a very unique impression. Walking through the narrow alleys you will admire the historic and religious buildings, symbols of the glorious past. Among them, the Church of San Bernardino of Siena, one of the few testimonies of the fifteenth century in Calabria.

In late-Gothic style, we are presented with two yellow stone doors. The interior reproduces the typical Franciscan, with exposed materials such as stone and wood that give a somber and sober atmosphere. Another jewel, dating back to the 14th century, is the Collegiate church of St. Nicholas, built on two levels and rich in works of art, including the Madonna of Trapani executed between the end of the sixteenth and early seventeenth century and The Madonna between St. Lucia and St. Catherine of Alexandria, a canvas commissioned in 1598 by the University of Morano. From here you can arrive easily at the enchanting Norman Castle. Located on the top of the historic center, it offers a spectacular view, overlooking the Pollino massif and allowing you a glimpse the Sila peaks in the distance.castello-morano_mycalabria

The center of Morano still offers a lot to see: it is a treasure chest of art and culture, thanks to the numerous religious works and the noble palaces that it hosts. The Church of St. Peter and Paul, dating back to the year 1000, is the most ancient of Morano, the Cappuccini convent and the Baroque church of Santa Maria Maddalena.

For those who love a good stroll, the scenery is fascinating admired from the hill above the village of Morano Calabro, while for those who love adventure, there are numerous paths from here to explore the areas of the Pollino Park.

Morano is also famous for its gastronomy that dates back to an ancient rural tradition and to the Giuncata, a typical, sweet and delicate cheese.

For restaurants and accommodation information, please refer to the Marco Polo Calabria Guide.