Few countries of the world are as diverse as Italy - spectacular scenery, romantic getaways, medieval architecture, renaissance art, panoramic beaches and more! Italy also brings to mind some of the world's finest wines, gastronomic delights with its seafood, pasta, pizza and fresh fruits.
Paola is a lovely ancient town quite popular on the Tyrrhenian coast of Calabria. It is located in Southern most part of the Italian Peninsula, in the province of Cosenza in the Calabria region to the hillside. It borders Basilicata on the North, the Ionio Sea to the East, Tyrrhenian Sea to the West and Sicily is close by across the Messina channel. An attractive drive awaits tourists from Paola to the Passo Crocetta with a view at 979 m.
Paola boasts of small bays and long sandy beaches with green vegetation. The Tyrrhenian coast from Praia a Mare south to Paola is known as 'Citrus Rivera' because of the perfume of citrus blossom. The meadows of Paola bloom with a multitude of wild flowers each spring, though the land sustains only light grazing.
Generally, Southern Italy is wilder than the North with its olive trees, cool forests and rolling hills. Bears and wolves can be found in abundance in the Calabrian hills. The Calabrian beaches are better on the west coast with long stretches of sand punctuated with rocky outcrops and secluded cloves, whereas, the beaches on the eastern side are rockier and more rugged.
Ruminating on the name Paola, it is the feminine form of Paolo, which is the Italian form of the Latin name Paulus. Paola originally means 'small' or 'humble'. This little town of Paola may not provide unforgettable shopping with designer boutiques like Milan or awesome architecture like Rome, but this quaint little town is the home of several prominent personalities.
St. Francis of Paola
Paola houses the famous Catholic monastery of San Francesco di Paola built in the 15th century for her benevolent son St. Francis founder of the mendicant order of the Minims. It is located inside a rock atop a mountain with a river running beneath it.
St. Francis was born in Paola and educated at the Franciscan friary of San Marco. He became a hermit at the age of fifteen at Paola. Later he founded the Minim friars, built a monastery and set rules emphasizing patience, charity and humility. Fasting and abstinence from meat was his vow. He not only could perform miracles but also prophesize with insight into men's hearts. The hermits of St. Francis of Assisi, as they are popularly known, established foundations in southern Italy and Sicily. St. Francis reached his end on April 2, 1519, which is solemnized as 'feast day' every year. Incidentally, the famous Italo-Brazilian musician and player Luisa Romano was born in Paola.
Beaches of Paola
Another attraction of Paola for the tourists is its beautiful beaches; spread over 20 kilometers with a fascinating seafront. The sea water is alluring and crystal clean with some unique spots to see and delicious sea food to taste. Naturalistic, historical and cultural routes are available for splendid long evening walks along the sea shore. The beaches are also a favorite with the locals who see a great opportunity for snorkeling here
Travel to Paola
Paola is famous for its several beach hotels offering single and double rooms, restaurants and hillside villas and holiday rentals. It is a common sight to see ancient buildings restructured into places of stay where clients are offered all sorts of comforts with the modern services including Internet facilities. There are hotels located near San Francesco di Paolo Sanctuary. Excellent local dishes that are hot and spicy with lots of locally caught fresh fish, pasta and vegetables from fields around invite the tourists desirous of good traditional food
Paola and the surrounding regions in Calabria are becoming popular holiday home property markets attracting a lot of investment in recent years. Tourism is becoming increasingly vibrant with the number of visitors growing every year. Excellent front line beach properties are available for rental and sale.
Paola is well connected by roadways, train or plane. The station of Paola is an important railway node and can be reached from almost any point in Italy. The airport of Lamezia Terme is about 40 minutes from Paola. In fact, more low cost carriers are planned to start flying from UK this year