A beautiful medieval town of the province of Cosenza, located on a hill overlooking the clear waters of the Ionian Sea, Cariati has very ancient origins. The discovery of a "bretia" tomb (IV-III century B.C.), evidences that the area was inhabited by indigenous people, devoted to sheep farming and agriculture. Near the ancient walls have also been unearthed remains of furniture, pots and dwellings dating back the Meta Pontine, Crotonian and Roman periods. The village, however, acquired its present appearance between the X and XI century, protected by a Byzantine fortress, placed slightly inland on a hill to defend the town and its population against the Saracen incursions. During the domain of the Ruffo the walls were strengthened and the city became a Bishopric seat.
Not to miss:
- the "bretia" tomb (IV-III century BC), located on a hill overlooking the sea, it consists of a large and richly frescoed underground chamber with a series of personal effects (bronze armor, belt, helmet, sword and dishes), today on exhibition at Archaeological Museum of Sibari;
- the charming medieval village, perched on the hill and features a series of typical narrow and winding streets;
- Porta Pia, the main entrance to the medieval village, which dates back to the first half of the XVII century;
- the Cathedral of St. Michael, originally built in the V century and rebuilt in 1857 during the episcopate period of Msgr. Nicola Goliath. It is preceded by a porch, surmounted by a Bell tower, built in a later period. The dome is covered with majolica tiles and the interior is divided into three naves separated by Ionic columns;
- the Church of the Observant, located a short distance from the walls of the town. It was built in 1441 in late Gothic style and features a decorated dome and a pointed arch portal entrance.