The Chapel of Madonnina del Mare is a chapel built in a small cave in Via San Francesco da Paola, in Scilla. In the chapel, on a marble altar, there is a bronze sculpture of the Virgin and Child. Because is near the entrance to the Port of Scilla, the statue is also known as Madonnina del Porto. SHORT HISTORY The cave in which the altar stands today is the result of the excavations carried out by the German troops during the Second World War, when the soldiers tried to create a shelter against bombing. The Via San Francesco da Paola was built around the middle of the 20th century, and the statue of the Virgin, work of the sculptor Monteleone, was placed in the cave in 1953. During the 1970s, the tunnel that surrounds the rock of Scilla, in which the chapel is found today, was also built. HOW TO GET THERE The Chapel of Madonnina del Mare is located about 750 meters away from the Scilla train station. To find the chapel on foot, use the map below.
Scilla is mainly known for its coastal district of Chianalea, a charming and picturesque place with narrow streets and old buildings, for its magnificent Ruffo Castle, an ancient fortification built on the promontory of Scilla, for its churches – the Church of the Immaculate Conception, the Church of San Rocco, the Church of the Holy Spirit, and for its beautiful beach known as Spiaggia delle Sirene (Beach of the Mermaids).
Fontana Storica della Sirena is a beautiful fountain located in the Chianalea district, in Scilla, about 100 meters away from the picturesque Port of Scilla. Of modern construction, the fountain is located in Via Grotte, in a small open space between the buildings. The sculpture recalls the myth of the Scylla mermaid, to which Scilla is closely linked. ARCHITECTURE The fountain’s basin is built in brick and stone. The upper part presents a sculpture of a rock made of concrete, which supports an enamelled terracotta statue depicting a mermaid holding a shell in her hands. Behind this composition, another large shell acts as a background. HOW TO GET THERE The fountain is located about 800 meters away from the Scilla railway station. To find the fountain on foot, use the map below.
The Church of the Immaculate Conception (Chiesa dell’Immacolata) is a church in Scilla, located in the immediate vicinity of the Ruffo Castle. SHORT HISTORY Ancient Greek parchments speak about the existence of a church on this place since the early centuries of Christianity, linked more or less to the fortress built nearby around the 5th century. During the Norman domination of the area, the church was dedicated to the Madonna dell’Itria, a title widely used by the Greek churches and imported later to the southern Italy. Following the earthquakes of 1509 and 1599, the church, badly damaged, was rebuilt and enlarged. This new church was dedicated to the Holy Virgin under the title of the Immaculate Conception. During the earthquake of February 5, 1783, the roof and the magnificent dome collapsed. Two days later, the whole central vault fell. The church was rebuilt in brick and stone between 1825 and 1875. In 1894, the church was damaged again, and extensive restorations became necessary. On this occasion, the bell towers were lowered and the brick vault was replaced by a wooden roof. At the beginning of 20th century, the interior of the church was beautifully frescoed, but it was destroyed Read more [...]
The Church of San Rocco is a relatively new church in Scilla, dedicated to Saint Roch, the patron saint of the town, located in the homonymous square, in Piazza San Rocco. SHORT HISTORY The cult of San Rocco was probably born in Scilla in the 15th century, when the area was hit by a plague and the saint was credited for saving the locals. Around that time, Scilla had important commercial relations with Venice, where the relics of San Rocco were held. In the 16th century, one of the saint’s statues was transported from Venice to Scilla, and San Rocco became the patron saint of the town. The Church of San Rocco was built in 1738, on the site of a former church dedicated to St. George. The church was heavily hit by the earthquakes of 1783 and 1908, being rebuilt each time. The today’s church is the result of a rebuilding started in the 1970s and completed in August 1990. The rebuilding was made with the help of the local people, and it became necessary after the damage suffered by the building during the Second World War. ART AND ARCHITECTURE The facade of the church, with two Read more [...]
The Church of Santa Maria di Porto Salvo is a 18th-century church located in a small square in the center of the Chianalea district, in Scilla. SHORT HISTORY The church was built in 1700 by the Brotherhood of Santa Maria di Porto Salvo, in the beautiful Chianalea district. The church was damaged by the cataclysms of 1783 and 1908, but it was not completely destroyed. Each time, it was rebuilt at the expense of the inhabitants of the neighborhood. ART AND ARCHITECTURE The church, with a rectangular plan and a single nave, is a beautiful example of the 18th-century architecture, for its harmonious and delicate style, both on the outside and inside. The facade, of a dirty white color, has four pilasters with a very high base, surmounted by a triangular body with a cross at the top. In the center of the frontispiece, there is a circular tondo representing Maria Santissima di Porto Salvo. Between the external and internal pilasters, there are two cornices with a rectangular shape and concave corners, while between the two central pilasters is the wooden portal from the 18th-century, divided into six squares surrounded by frames. Inside, there were five altars, all Read more [...]
The history of the Port of Scilla is closely linked to that of its city, whose ancient origins are a blend of mythology, history, legend and images created by the enchanting surrounding landscape. Fishermen of the past chose the area next to the cliff of Scilla, where the presence of the numerous rocks facilitated the practice of fishing, while allowing the construction of the rudimentary huts. Over the centuries, this port has been a refuge for boats that crossed the Messina Strait, later becoming a fishing port, since fishing was the main activity for the local population. Even today, at the quay, are often anchored special boats for fishing swordfish, a type of fish very common in the area. The Port of Scilla consists of a pier with an “L” shape, equipped in the inner part with quays and bollards for mooring. The Ruffo di Calabria quay is used for pleasure boating, the Scoglio di Ulisse quay is dedicated to fishing boats, while the outer dock is assigned for commercial use and for anchoring police vehicles. The recreational services are managed by the Boat Service, which has positioned near the port 2 ecological camps with 100 berths, active from May Read more [...]
The Mermaid Beach, or Spiaggia delle Sirene, is a 800 meters long beach in Scilla, set between the Ruffo Castle in the East and the rocky Punta Pacì in the West. The Scilla Beach is a wonderful beach of coarse sand, bathed by the beautiful crystalline and clear water of the Tyrrhenian Sea, with an extraordinary transparency thanks to the gravelly bottom. The sea conceals tremendous natural treasures, the water being rich in various fish species, algae and molluscs, ideal for snorkeling. Perfect for families with children, the beach is well equipped, offering kiosks, bars and numerous restaurants overlooking the sea, as well as the possibility to rent several apartments and holiday homes nearby. HOW TO GET THERE The beach is easily reachable from the Scilla Train Station, the station being only 50 meters away.
Castello Ruffo di Scilla, also known as Castello Ruffo di Calabria, is an ancient fortification built on the promontory of Scilla, on the southern shore of the Messina Strait, being one of the most characteristic elements of the Calabrian landscape. SHORT HISTORY The first fortification built on the rock of Scilla dates back to the beginning of the 5th century B.C.. During the tyranny of Anaxilas, the city of Reggio assumed a considerable importance, and in 493 B.C., to put an end to the raids of the Tyrrhenian pirates who had a secure base in Scilla, defeated them and started the building of the fortress. The fortress will become for Anaxilas an important outpost for controlling the sea routes. The fortification was under the rule of the tyrants of Reggio, often engaged in clashes with the pirates, until 390 B.C., when Dionysius, the tyrant of Syracuse, conquered the fortress after a long siege. Fifty years have passed from that moment, until the regaining of the independence of Scilla, favored by Timoleonte di Corinto, who destroyed the tyrannical power of Syracuse in the year 340 B.C.. In 1060, during the siege of Reggio by the Normans, the Castle of Scilla Read more [...]