Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Walking Tour of Tropea and Tartufo in Pizzo

We seem to have a routine going on here - every morning we get up at 6:30am, get dressed and ready for the day and then go down for breakfast at 7:00am. After eating we return to the room to brush our teeth and wash our hands then grab our things we need for the day and then meet the group at 9:00am in the lobby to start our tours for the day. Today was the same.

At 9:00am we met in the lobby with Linda (our trip tour guide) and Nicolette (our local tour guide) and of course Mimmo (our bus driver). As the bus left the resort it started raining and lasted until just before we arrived in Tropea. We had to get off the bus about half a mile from town because the streets aren't able to accommodate a large bus.
Chiesa di Maria SS di Romania
So we walked into town and stopped at Piazza Vittorio Veneto to use the bathroom and get oriented to the town. Then we continued along Corso Vittorio Emanuele to Piazza Ercole and a statue of Pasquale Galluppi. Here the guide talked about Galluppi and about the historic center of town. We then continued our walk over to Chiesa di Maria SS di Romania.
Tyrrhenian Sea & Tropea Coast
This is a Norman church with a lot of history. After a tour of the inside of the church we continued down the street to the end where we had an incredible view of the Tyrrhenian Sea and the coast of Tropea. It was absolutely beautiful! From this vantage point we could see Santa Maria dell'Isola Monastery which is perched atop an island right near the coast - a site worth the trip. From here we went to a food tasting at a local store. We had a variety of things to taste including a sweet onion jam made from Tropea's famous red onions - "cipolla di Tropea".
Santa Maria dell'Isola Monastery
After the food tasting we returned to the Galluppi statue and then we had some free time for lunch and to explore Tropea on our own. Thomas and I ended up having lunch with Dave and Deanne at a pizza place right near the statue - we all had a slice of pizza and we enjoyed the food and the relaxing time to visit after a very busy morning. After we ate Thomas and I decided to go out on our own and explore the town. We walked around and visited a church, did some shopping and found a place to sit and enjoy the views of the sea. At 1:30pm we returned to the statue to meet the rest of the group and make the walk back to the bus.

We left Tropea and headed for Pizzo - another small town on the Tyrrhenian Sea. Again we had to leave the bus and walk a ways to get into town.
Tartufo di Pizzo
The streets just aren't built to accommodate large buses. In Pizzo we made our way to Piazza della Repubblica and to Bar Ercole Gelateria for some Tartufo di Pizzo. This was so good! It is a hazelnut gelato with a dark chocolate melted center (like a lava cake) and dusted with cocoa powder. We really enjoyed this and when we were done we had a little free time to explore Pizzo. We walked over to Castle Murat - we walked around the outside of the building but we didn't have time to go inside. We then took a quick stroll down the main road from the piazza and then returned to the bus for the ride back to the resort. But before returning to the resort we stopped at a grocery store to get things for dinner. We were on our own tonight and the only choice for food was the restaurant at the resort. So many of us just got snacks and some things to make sandwiches.
View from Popilia Country Resort
After everyone was done shopping we returned to the resort.

Thomas and I got things back into our room and then I went for a walk around the property. I enjoyed the walk and some great views. Then I returned to the room, took a shower and then we made sandwiches and ate while talking about the day. I then did a little blogging and editing photos. Now it is time to get some rest - tomorrow we board the bus and leave Campania and head to Basilicata and more specifically for Matera.