“Hot 🌶 Calabria & Zesty 🍋
July 24 – August 21, 2021
Scalea – Castrovillari – Camigliatello Silano – Monterosso Calabro – Gambarie – Reggio
Calabria – Messina – Taormina – Mount Etna – Catania – Siracusa – Ragusa –
Agrigento – Mazara del Vallo – Trapani – Palermo
The first half of
this BaltiCCycle tour starts in Calabria, a Southern Italian region nestled
among the Apennines, bordered by the Mediterranean Sea, far from common tourist
paths and usually left unexplored by international travellers. The route that
we will follow crosses Calabria lengthwise along the Apennines’ mountains
ridge, through four national parks:
The Pollino National Park, whose high peaks offer
a typical mountain scenery. You’ll have the chance to admire the Heldreich’s pine – Pino Loricato,
which grows here. This pine is the symbol of this park (“Italus”
is 1230 years old!).
The Sila National Park – as we ride southward,
we arrive at one the most important biosphere reserves listed among the UNESCO
world heritage sites and the most extended plateau in Europe. Known historically
as the “Great woodland of Italy”, this nature preserve is entirely covered in
ancient woods and forests. Ah, by the way, there are wolves roaming the area
;). The symbol of this park is the wolf.
The Serre Regional Natural Park
– a group of mountains covered in thick forests, this area boasts many water
sources and streams, which suddenly become raging torrents and have created
narrow and deep gorges and spectacular rainfalls in time.
Last but not least, the Aspromonte National
Park, which overlooks the two seas that border Calabria, as well as the
Strait of Messina, Sicily and the Etna volcano. Yes, Etna! It’s spitting lava on the eastern side at the moment, but
we’ll climb it on the opposite side, no worries.
The second part of
the ride contours the Sicilian seaside clockwise from Messina (east) to Pachino (south, cherry tomatoes aplenty!) and Trapani (west), until we reach Palermo, touching stunning beauties
such as the Taormina Roman theatre, Siracusa and the
Temples in Agrigento. Other natural attractions
like the Turkish Steps cliff are on the way too. In Sicily you will also have
the once-in-a-lifetime chance to start your day with a croissant. A croissant
filled with ice-cream. For breakfast. Yes, for breakfast.
Of course it will be hot in the south, especially if you eat lots of chilli
peppers trying to imitate the locals in Calabria (indeed the pride of this land
is chilli pepper), but there are some tricks that will help, like the shade of
ancient forests first and numerous dips in the Sicilian sea after, because
you’ll definitely want to bathe in its crystalline waters.
Let’s try, join the
ride, and bring a pair of swimming goggles!
coordinator: Giulia Brotto firstname.lastname@example.org
The ride coordinators: Maryla Zielińska email@example.com, +48 663 266 553;
Sigitas Kučas, firstname.lastname@example.org, +370 686 59 375