Calabria title

Calabria tour dates
Margaret Knight Tours

Gerace cathedral and gate detail

The mountainous peninsula separating the Tyrrhenian and Ionian seas was a place of legend from the time of Homer, a safe haven for settlers and a prize for invaders. This tour will introduce you to Calabria, the southernmost and least known part of mainland Italy. Distinct in character, Calabria has a spectacularly beautiful and varied landscape rich in history and folk culture and it is an exciting and diverse culinary region. Calabria can feel like a hidden country and this tour will reveal its treasures, beauty and drama.

There is plentiful archaeological evidence of the Greeks who established colonies in the 8th century BCE. It was they who called Calabria ‘the land of the grape’ and the varieties they cultivated are still grown while a dialect of Greek is spoken in parts of the province.

When Rome took the south in 275 BCE the wealthy coastal cities became home to large communities of merchants and artisans. After Rome fell and Calabria became part of the Byzantine Empire she absorbed architectural styles from the East and in the 10th century the invading Saracens left their mark on agriculture, cuisine, language and crafts.

The legacy of the Normans lies in the magnificent castles and churches they created and in their turn the Swabians, the Angevans, the Aragonese and the Spanish contributed to the many aspects of this ancient province.

Reggio Lungomare with Etna

Photos of Calabria, including some from our previous Calabria tour here.

You might also be interested in reading Margaret's "Letters from Calabria" which you can find here



Monday 27th March

Departure from London City Airport/Milan to Lamezia Terme Airport.
Transfer by private coach to the Hotel Barbieri in Altomonte.
Dinner at the hotel.

Tuesday 28th March

Altomonte is a beautifully preserved medieval hilltop town. Visits include the Gothic Chiesa di Santa Maria della Consolazione, built in the Angevan period and the Museo Civico containing works by SimoneMartini and ‘Nardo Daddi.

Group Lunch

Afternoon visit to Civita, a hilltown in Pollino National Park. founded in the 15th century by Albanian refugees from the Ottoman invasion. The Arbëreshe language is still spoken here.

Dinner at the hotel.

Wednesday 29th March

By private coach to Rossano, the foremost Byzantine centre in southern Italy from the 8th to the 11th century for the Cathedral, the 10th century Church of San Marco and Museo Diocesano home of the Purple Codex an important 6th century Life of Christ.

Group Lunch

The 11th century abbey of Santa Maria del Patire with a magnificent 12th century mosaic floor. Return to our hotel via Sibari archaeological area.

Dinner at the hotel

Thursday 30th March

Departure from Altomonte to Vibo Valentia for the remainder of our stay. First, by private coach, to Pizzo Calabro for the Angevan-Aragonese Castello Murat castle where Napoleon’s brother in law Joachim Muratwas imprisoned and executed and the unique Chiesetta di PiedigrottaGroup.


Tropea, the beautiful seaside town founded (according to Pliny the Elder) by Hercules. Visits include the Arab, Gothic and Baroque city gates, the Renaissance palaces of the centro storico and the 11th century Norman Cathedral.

On to Vibo Valentia and check-in at the Hotel 501 for the remainder of our tour .

Dinner at the hotel.

Friday 31st March

By coach to Reggio Calabria for the National Archeological Museum, home to the Riace bronzes, the 5th century BC bronze Philosopher's Head , the oldest-known Greek portrait in existence and impressive exhibits from Locri, including statues of the Dioscuri.. We will also visit the Greek and Roman remains on the Lungomare. At this point Sicily is only 7 miles away across the Strait of Messina and Mount Etna, a little under 45 miles away, is clearly visiblefrom the Lungomare.

Group Lunch

Return to Vibo Valentia via the ancient town of Scilla, the legendary location of the six headed cave monster in the Odyssey and Monte Sant’Elia for stunning views of the volcanoes at Etna and Stromboli.

Dinner at the hotel.

Saturday 1st April

Stilo for ‘La Cattolica’, the perfect 8th century Byzantine church and Bivongi for the Orthodox Christian Monastery of San Giovanni Therestis dating from the 11th century.

Group Lunch

Gerace, one of the best preserved medieval towns in Calabria. Visits include the centro storico, the massive, austere Norman Cathedral, the largest in Calabria and virtually unaltered and the churches of San Francesco and San Giovanello with their unique fusions of Byzantine, Saracen, Norman and Gothic architecture.

Dinner at the hotel.

Sunday 2nd April

By private coach for the wonderful drive through the mountains and forests of Le Serre to Serra San Bruno where visits include the 11th century centro storico, the Museo of the Carthusian Monastery and a walk through the woods to the Santuario di Santa Maria nel Bosco.

Group Lunch

Return to Vibo for a visit to the Norman-Hohenstaufen castle, now a state museum housing a very fine collection of Greek jewellery and artefacts.

Dinner at the hotel.

Monday 3rd April

Departure by private coach for Reggio Calabria Airport for flight back to London.

view from Gerace

Please note that this tour is fully catered

The Hotels

3 x nights at the 4* Hotel Barbieri in Altomonte -
4 x nights at the 4* Hotel 501 in Vibo Valentia -


Monday 27th March London City / Rome Fiumicino 10:55 / 13:50 AZ211
Rome /Lamezia Terme 17:00 / 18:10 AZ1167

Monday 03rd April Reggio Calabria / Milan-Linate 14:05 / 15:45 AZ1198
Milan-Linate / London City 18:20 / 19:15 AZ220

Tour includes

- Flights with Alitalia
- All airport taxes, security charges and UK Government levies.
- 7 x nights at 4 *hotels detailed above.
- Half board arrangements – dinner in each respective hotel nightly including wine
1/3 bottle, mineral water ½ L bottle and coffee/tea
- 7 x light lunches including wine 1/3 bottle , water ½ L bottle and coffee.
- Tour guide/manager for the period and all related expenses.
- Entry fees.
- Basic gratuities.
- Local guide(s) where essentially required by local law.
- De Luxe a/c coach and driver for the period including all related expenses.
- Porterage at each hotel on arrival (coach to rooms) and departure (lobby to coach).
- Millennium Tours travel accessories i.e. travel guide book etc.
Not included
• Items of personal expenditure such as telephone calls from your room, laundry etc.
• Any other drinks except those specified above.
• Transport to/from your UK airport
• Personal travel insurance. (please see MillenniumTours booking form)


All the flights and flight-inclusive holidays listed here are operated by Millennium Tours Ltd ATOL 10040 and financially protected by the ATOL scheme. When you pay you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it.

Please see the booking conditions for further information or for more information about financial
protection and the ATOL Certificate go

This tour is now fully booked

For more information about this and future tours please contact:

Millennium Tours
Suite 67
95 Wilton Road
London SW1V 1BZ

Tel. 020 8875 986