A town in the province of Reggio Calabria, facing the Tyrrhenian Sea, Gioia Tauro has one of the most important and active commercial ports of the Mediterranean. It rises in the area, once occupied by the ancient Magna Graecia city of "Metauros" on the right bank of the River Metauro (today Petrace), founded in the VII century B.C. by the Calcidesi populations. Exhibits of great value are the archaeological finds unearthed in the area, today on display in the National Archaeological Museum of Reggio Calabria and at the Metropolitan Museum in New York, brought here by first immigrants from Calabria in the late XIX century, who had found them by just digging the soil, and subsequently sold on the American antique markets.
Sites of Interest:
- the Cathedral of Sant' Ippolito the Martyr, whose construction works started in 1930, it features a simple style façade with three access portals. Inside are preserved 12 windows of the artist Giuseppe Niglia, the relics of San Pacifico and a XVI century wooden statue of Sant' Ippolito;
- the Church of the Immacolata, a single nave plan construction, recently built;
- the Church of St. Anthony of Padua, the oldest religious building in the city, dating back to 1800, located in the old historical center and accessible through a main entrance preceded by a short staircase. It was severely damaged by an earthquake in 1928;
- the Church of San Francesco di Paola, recently built on 1989;
- the Church of Our Lady of Portosalvo, realized recently after the knocking down of the previous building from 1948, always dedicated to the Virgin, patron of the sailors;
- Palazzo Baldari, an XVIII century building located in the historical centre of the city, which was used by the Bourbons as a gendarmerie, and was used as a shelter by Giuseppe Garibaldi during the Expedition of the Thousand. Today it is used for cultural exhibitions and conferences;
- Palazzo Fallara and Palazzo Sant'Ippolito;
- The Tower Don Giacomo, probably the best preserved among the anti-Saracen towers present in the area.