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Updated on April 25, 2011


Tropea is located on the Southern Calabrian coast between Sicily and Rome in the 'toe' of Italy's boot. Tropea is a six hour train ride south from Rome and is no secret getaway to the sun-seeking Italian, German and British tourists who pour into the area in the summer. This Italian resort town attracts very few Americans and coming here in the off-season is a bit like wandering into a party that has yet to happen.

This restored old town is perched on a cliff overlooking a sandy beach on the Tyrrhenian Sea. Full of ivy covered stone buildings and narrow alleys that are lined with wine bars and eateries. The beach is what attracts the European tourists and hotels and bed and breakfasts here offer outstanding discounts in non-summer months, which is great news for those seeking relief from the economic woes in the world.

Tropea has a modern 'new' town and an old quarter that are both small enough to walk around in a day's time. Almost every street ends at the cliff which hangs over the lovely blue sea. Flights of steps lead down to beautiful sandy beaches and a great view of Stromboli where you see steam coming from the top of the volcano there.

The church and monastery of Santa Maria is Tropea's gem that sits atop limestone overlooking the sea. Chili peppers, lemons and strawberries are grown here and the Corso Vittoria Emanuele-Tropea's main street, is lined with shops selling chilies, herbs and succulent sun-dried tomatoes. The treat of the town is food made with the 'cipolla di Tropea'-a red, sweet onion that is oval shaped and grows in the area. Tropea is a wonderful town, offering outstanding views and warm Italian hospitality.

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