Famous seaside resort of the Tyrrhenian Sea, Tropea, by the legends was founded by the God Hercules, on his return from Spain. Inhabited since the Paleolithic Ages, it became a Greek colony (tombs of the Ancient Greece Ages have been excavated in the area). Over the centuries the city was dominated by the Romans, the Byzantines, the Saracens, the Normans and the Aragons.
Tropea is an important urban settlement with a rich variety of architectonic styles: from Arab-Norman to Liberty. In the Old city center there is a concentration of important noble palaces and churches, all edified around 1600, on a hill with a view over the sea.
The Cathedral was built in a Sicilian-Norman style (XI century), on the ruins of a Byzantine cemetery. Ruined over the centuries by earthquakes and fires, the building was refurbished to its original status in early '900. The major altar preserves a cedar wood carved icon, of the artist Giotto's school, of the Madonna di Romania, patron Saint of the city. Inside the Cathedral it is possible to admire: a statue of the Madonna della Libertà (XVII century); a marble bas-relief with a nativity scene ('400), a Renaissance high-relief that features the Resurrection of Christ and a beautiful wooden Cross of an unknown artist.
In Piazza Ercole, features the Sedile Magnum, a notary council seat and home of the Court of Law.
Another emblem of the city is the Sanctuary of Santa Maria dell'Isola, built on an island which today is attached to the main land by a sand bank. Edified by the Benedictines in late Middle ages, the construction submitted various changes over the years, up until the Renaissance when the Latin Basilica was finally completed. The Church is surrounded by a Mediterranean garden, rich of plants, evergreen vegetation and garden benches that propose wonderful overviews over the area. There is also a small Museum with images and documents that narrate the history of the Sanctuary.
The Old city with its narrow streets, hides enchanting treasures such as the small courtyards and the hand decorated portals of the houses. Some old buildings have underground silos, where grain from Monte Poro was preserved, until it was loaded, by a pipe line in terra-cotta, directly on board carrier ships moored in the port.