For a lot of people, Pizzo will be the first/last destination on their trip if they fly in to Lamezia airport. Just 20 minutes drive away (or a 20 minute train ride + bus to the airport), it’s a logical stop.

Pizzo is very small. It reminds me of the village in Cinema Paradiso where time has stood still for the local shops and bars and the passeggiata takes place every night. Then someone tries to hustle me into a restaurant in three languages and I realise that change is afoot. Despite the increase in tourism, I still have a soft spot for Pizzo and once you get away from the hustlers, the people who live there are incredibly friendly.

Things to do:

You have to try the local Tartufo ice cream – still hand made every morning, it is now world famous and rightly so after being invented apparently by someone who didn’t have enough of one ice cream flavour for their wedding reception and ended up mixing up what they had into individual portions. The best time is after dinner whilst watching the town do its nightly passeggiata.

La Chiesetta di Piedigrotta. About 3km walk up up the coast on the beach, you’ll find this little cave full of amazing statues carved by local fishermen which also contains a small altar dedicated to the Madonna. Very unusual and definitely worth a stop.

Chiesetta di Piedigrotta

Beaches: the beaches just north of Pizzo are generally cleaner and sandier than the ones to the south but the ones to the south are easier to access by foot and closer to the railway station (which you can get to with a Piaggio Ape Calessino from the main piazza)

The Calessino taxi cab

Finally the church – la Chiesa di San Sebastiano. Very much worth a look inside the church to see the various processional statues used for a range of festivals through the year, the art and the antique furniture but make sure you go on to the terrace outside around twilight to get the best view of Stromboli volcano in the distance. Well worth making the effort to go up a few steps…

Stromboli from the Chiesa di San Sebastiano

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