Bivongi
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BIVONGI

Not too far from Stilo and the Ionian Coasts of Calabria is where one will encounter Bivongi, an ancient handicrafts centre of the Stilaro Valley.

History

The village was founded during the era of Saracen raids (IX century), which caused the inhabitants to move from the coast and populate areas more inland.
During the same century, Basilian monks were also present in the area. They preached in the grottoes of the Bivongi territory. Among these, Ambrogio, Nicola and Giovanni who was later canonised with the name of Théristis (meaning harvester), after reference was made to one of his many miracles.

Robert Guiscard, who conquered Calabria (mid XI century), benefited from his powers and became a devotee to the point of wanting the construction of a monastery dedicated to the saint.

The history of Bivongi from that time on was connected to the activity of the Greek-Orthodox Monastery of San Giovanni Théristis, until 1662.

The painter Tommaso Martini (1689-1747) was born in Bivongi.

A visit to the City

The main monument is the San Giovanni Théristis Monastery situated 2 kilometres from the habitation. It represents the historical change from the Byzantine to Latin Norman architecture (XI century).

On arrival at the Monastery, one can admire the ruins of the SS. Apostoli Convent.

One must not forget to visit the Modern Art Gallery and Contemporary AM International.

One can depart from Bivongi and enjoy interesting cultural excursions, such as that to Monte Consolino dominated by the remains of the Medieval Castle and populated by Eremitic Grottoes containing Byzantine frescoes, or naturalistic visits such as to the Marmarico Cascades which are among the highest in Italy.

Moreover, Bivongi is a handicrafts centre of wood and wicker work. It is also noted for the production of an excellent doc wine.

Place of interest

- Parrocchiale di S. Giovanni Decollato
- Monastero greco-ortodosso di San Giovanni Theristis
- Monastero SS. Apostoli
- Mulinu do Furnu
- Cascata del Marmarico
- Parco Vignali
- Bagni di Guida
- Castello e Grotte sul Monte Consolino

Museums

– The Modern Art Gallery and Contemporary AM International;
- Museum “A Lumera” of Peasant Art and Popular Culture;
- Eco-museum of Ironworks and Foundries of Calabria.

Events

- The Feast of Maria S.S. Mamma Nostra on 5th February;
- Orthodox Feast of San Giovanni Théristis in February;
- Catholic and Orthodox Easter;
- Badia Market in August;
- Wine Festival in August;
- Feast of Maria S.S. Mamma Nostra on the 2nd Sunday in September;
- Feast of San Martino in November.

BIVONGI
Art City

Calabria region of Italy

 

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