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San Vito sullo Ionio > Torre di Ruggiero

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Punto di partenza
Punto d'arrivo
Punto acqua
Struttura ricettiva
Punto interesse

A stage of medium length and moderate gradients, very smooth, with which we enter Parco delle Serre.

Special Notes

Especially in the first part, which is still on asphalt, you may encounter some stray dogs: be careful.

The steep climb that leads to Lago Acero is covered in brambles (but you can still pass it without any problems).

The only watering hole in the first part of the stage, just after the junction with the route of the previous stage.

when to go
Marzo - Novembre
Suitable for
how to get there
description of the route

We leave the centre of San Vito sullo Ionio and take an asphalt road that leads us out of the town. So we tackle a good climb (about 500 m height difference) on a road that is mostly in the shade. Then we change to a dirt road, which is well maintained at first, until we take a steeper ramp towards Lago Acero: the track here is infested with brambles and the ground is a bit uneven. After going around the lake (which we do not see), we find a good gravel road again and reach the junction from which we descended on the previous stage (towards San Vito sullo Jonio); we turn left (and come across the only water source on the route) and ride up and down for several kilometres in a beautiful pine forest.

Once out of the forest, we enjoy a beautiful open panorama with some windmills in the background, alternating sunny and shady sections. Passing the windmills, we move towards Monte Pizzini (918 m), whose summit is preceded by a fairly steep climb (about 100 m height difference). Losing the same height we have just gained, still on a dirt road that offers beautiful views, we approach the last climb of the day (about 100 m height difference), which is in the shade. At the end of the climb, we turn left and come to a wooden building that is always open and serves as a bivouac (inside there is a fireplace, a table and a few chairs that are useful in case of emergency); from there we make a sharp turn and start the descent towards the village (about 300 m drop). Shortly after, we meet the asphalt road again and come to the state road, which we take to the left and soon reach the centre of Torre di Ruggiero.

What to know

Torre di Ruggiero owes its name to Ruggero I of Sicily, son of Tancredi of Altavilla. His brother Roberto il Guiscardo was Count of Calabria, while Ruggero was the conqueror of Sicily.

Ruggero was born in Normandy in 1031 and distinguished himself by his courageous and wise character. In the Serre region, he is remembered as the one who gave the Carthusian monk Bruno di Colonia the territory where the Carthusian monastery of Serra San Bruno still stands today.

He died in 1101, assisted by of Bruno of Cologne. He crossed what is now the territory of Torre di Ruggiero and united the scattered districts under a single hamlet called Torre di Spadola.

What to see

Just outside the town of Torre Ruggiero is the Santuario della Madonna delle Grazie. Completed in 1886, it stands on the site of a small church built between the 10th and 12th centuries. The first place of worship was built by Basilian monks. The sanctuary, half destroyed by the terrible earthquake of 1783, was not rebuilt until 1858.

The Madonna delle Grazie is one of the most venerated in Calabria and there are many associations of believers around the world - especially in Canada.

what to eat

A typical product of this area is the round hazelnut of Calabria (Nocciola Tonda di Calabria), also known as the “hazelnut of Cardinale”, where it was introduced in the 19th century.

It was introduced in the 19th century. Its cultivation extends throughout the territory of the municipality of Cardinale and neighbouring municipalities (such as Torre Ruggiero) and has been a source of income for many business over the last two centuries. The fruit, characterised by its round appearance and medium size, stands out for its excellent organoleptic properties and its shelf life. The Nocciola Tonda di Calabria is not suitable for intensive cultivation and it is in the interest of the whole area to preserve the processing of this product locally.

where to sleep

Foresteria del Santuario Maria SS. delle Grazie, in Torre di Ruggiero. Tel. +39096 793635

Appartamenti I Limini, in Torre di Ruggiero. Tel. +39334 176 6345

How to Reach

The starting point is accessible by car.

The starting point can be reached by bus, which leaves from the city of Catanzaro.

Here is the LINK, to check the timetable.

The starting point is NOT reachable by train.

“From time to time colourful murals appear on the walls of the houses”

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