Isola di Capo Rizzuto

The village of Isola di Capo Rizzuto, is 17 km far from Crotone and only 5 km far from the Hotel Villaggio S.Antonio; it is located 196 meters above sea level and has 13,810 inhabitants.
Its wonderful location, at the edge of a shelf near the sea, and reclamation work, have recently
developed tourism, giving the country a strong impulse, such as to build recently hotels and campings on the sea.
It seems thnat the foundation of the town was wanted by one of the sisters of Priamo, Astiochena, who wanted a town near the Capo Rizzuto promontory, near the temple of Hera.
Some scholars derive the name "Insula" from the existence of some islands overlooking the three promontories "Japigi", identified in Capo Rizzuto, Capo Cimiti and Punta Le Castella, so named by the presence of the legendary Japyx, son of Daedalus, one of the most talented artist of ancient Greece.
Other scholars still derive the name of Isola from the fact that "Insula" was the place where those who lived there enjoyed asylum. The emperor of Constantinople, Leo VI (886-911), raised Isola Di Capo Rizzuto to a episcopal headquarters. The diocese and therefore the town is indicated in Byzantine documents with the Greek term "Aesylon" which means "sacred place", where man can not be persecuted. With the transformation of Greek writing into the Latin one, the name became Isola. With Royal Decree of 22 January 1863, he definitively assumed the current name: Isola Di capo Rizzuto. Many findings dating back to the classical age have been found in the territory (between the VI and the IV century BC).

You can still see in Isola: conspicuous remains of the 16th century fortified complex, of the Feudal Castle (in via S. Marco) built in the medieval period, enlarged in 1549, by the feudatory, Neapolitan, Giovanni Antonio Ricca; remains of spurred angular quadrilateral towers; relics of the walls of the perimeter curtain with pivellini; the Gate of the medieval village, surmounted by a turret of the rear clock.

The Duomo is a five-seventeenth-century building, founded on the substratum of the Norman monastery of the eleventh century. On the outside, there is an elegant Baroque façade with a richly ornamented stone portal surmounted by the Bishop's Coat of Arms (17th century) and the seventeenth-century bell tower with a mullioned window. The interior has a basilica, trinavian plan, decorated in a baroque style with stuccos of the eighteenth century, with Abside square ribbed cross.
The altar is very rich, due to its eighteenth-century baroque style. The oil-painted altarpiece of the Madonna Greca or Nera (protector of the village), of Byzantine style, dominates the altar.

The Church of S. Marco was built in 1549 by order of the feudal lord of Isola, Antonio Giovanni Ricca. It was the noble chapel of the Ricca family. Built in poor style sandstone, it has an artistic stone portal all decorated with bas-reliefs and zoomorphic motifs, dominated by the baronial emblem and with a small bell-tower with two lights on which there is a bronze bell from 1613.
Inside we find a monumental sarcophagus, with the remains of the feudal lord, decorated with winged lions and on the bases are reproduced heads of angels and various rural motifs.

The tower Torre di Capo Rizzuto (or Torre Vecchia), in the locality of Capo Rizzuto, is a cylindrical tower, with massive cordonatura stone slabs, built in the sixteenth century, a coastguard against the barbarian incursions. The tower was guarded by a corporal and a soldier, who had the task of watching day and night and report the presence of suspicious ships with special signs: smoke during the day and bonfire at night. Access to the inside of the tower was via a rustic wooden bridge.

The Sanctuary of the Madonna Greca, in Capo Rizzuto, dedicated to the Protectress of Isola Di Capo Rizzuto. Simple and majestic of new construction, the laying of the first stone is dated 1991.
It arises from the idea of creating a multi-purpose social center, which contains a large hall to be used as a place of welcome for pilgrims, meetings for the community, as a space for setting up exhibitions, as a listening room for music and multimedia visions. The surface of the Sanctuary is about 800 square meters which is enhanced by another 200 square meters of balconies.


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