In the south of Italy, in the province of Reggio Calabria, there is a small coastal town along the Ionian Sea known for its picturesque seaside location and pleasant climate. Bova Marina is a destination in the Calabrian Grecanica Area. The town is part of the broader area of Bova, which holds significant historical importance dating back to ancient times when it was part of Magna Graecia, a region with Greek cultural influences.
Bova Marina offers visitors a blend of natural beauty, sunshine, breathtaking views, historical heritage, and culinary delights, making it a fascinating destination for those seeking a taste of Calabrian culture and hospitality along the Ionian coast of Italy.
There are numerous excursions that you can experience in Bova Marina and its surroundings. Hiking, horseback riding, and trekking in the San Pasquale valley, with a renewed path that ascends to Bova, one of the most beautiful villages in Italy, and along the bed of the Amendolea stream at the foot of the Norman Castle, passing through Roghudi Vecchia.
One of the excursions that you absolutely cannot miss is a visit to the Archaeological Park of Archeoderi. The park is built around the remains of a synagogue unearthed in the 1980s during the modernization of the coastal highway. The structure, consisting of several rooms, was in use between the 4th and 6th centuries AD and is the oldest in the Western world after the one in Ostia Antica. It represents the only architectural evidence of Jewish presence in Calabria during this period. Noteworthy is the mosaic floor of the Prayer Hall dating back to the 4th century AD, which depicts the traditional seven-branched candelabrum, menorah, surrounded by a palm branch, a cedar, and the shofar, the ram’s horn used as a musical instrument in some Jewish religious ceremonies. The original mosaic is housed in the Antiquarium of the Park. The small museum also houses significant artifacts, including a hoard of 3,079 bronze coins found and abandoned inside a jug from the 4th-5th century AD, and a milestone discovered in the Amigdalà area not far from the current SS 106, dating back to 364-67 AD. The milestone confirms the existence of a relevant coastal road network, attesting to the site’s importance. The entire territory is characterized by spectacular views, diverse landscapes, and the plant biodiversity that distinguishes the entire area. Among the most beautiful panoramic views is the one from Capo San Giovanni, where the statue of Madonna della Stella Maris stands.
For enthusiasts of gentle mobility, the territory offers a series of paths to discover landscapes and immerse oneself in the ecosystem of the Grecanica area. The most interesting is undoubtedly the “Antica Delia Path,” a hiking trail of about 9 km that follows the ancient mule tracks that were once the only means of communication for the numerous communities that populated the area, combined with the invaluable landscape and naturalistic value of the route. The path starts from the Archaeological Park “Archeoderi” and follows the route leading to Bova, passing through the Licofossi area where there is a rest area equipped with supports for understanding the natural habitat.