Sibari is situated along the Jonic
Coast of Northern Calabria and is a locality of great
vocation for seaside tourism.
History confirms that Sibari was founded among the Greek
colonies in this region of Calabria, from Iso of Elice together
with Achei colonies and inhabitants of Trezene (720 or 708
The social charter offered fertile land and silver mines to
whoever asked citizenship, allowing it to become a powerful
and rich city, so much so that the Sibariti became synonymous
with a luxurious lifestyle in the whole of Magna-Greece and
also in the homeland (VI century).
Political clashes followed between the democratic party and
that of the Oligarchy, seeing defeat of the latter and exile
of its components to Crotone, also of Achaean foundation.
Here is where rivalry and envy was fuelled, which the city
has already developed due to commercial rivalry with Sibari.
The pretext for war was the murder of three nobles from Crotone
(512 BC), who were visiting Sibari and had molested a vestal.
The clash occurred two years later near to the River Traente
and saw 100.000 opposition Crotonese commanded by the mythical
athlete Milone, victor of numerous Olympic Games and 300.000
Sibariti who however, came out worse.
The City was plundered for 70 days and by suggestion of Pitagora,
the Crati river's course was diverted to cover the remains
Sibari completely disappeared or maybe only partly, if it's
true that many years later there were still some residents.
It was these men who, helped by Athens, decided to found Thoùrioi
close to the place where the Sibari once flowed (444 BC).
Its name derives from the presence of the Thouria Spring on
its territory, today known as Fonte del Fico.
Ippodamo da Mileto, inventive urban planner of the Cardus
Maximus and Decumanus Maximus of many cities, participated
in the construction of the City, along with the Greek historian
and singer of many battles of Maratona and Salamina Erodoto,
the philosopher Empedocle and the famous orator, Lisia.
In this way, chosen rendezvous took the city towards excellence
in the field of art and to having a democratic constitution,
allowing further assumption of importance. This led to an
inevitable clash with Taranto, Crotone and the Lucani (282
BC), against whom the city asked for help from Rome.
Having lined up alongside the flanks of the rising power during
the wars of Pirro, Thurii was annexed to the Republic of Rome,
causing it to suffer plunder and devastation by Hannibal's
army during the Second Punic War (204 BC).
Ten years later, it was re founded with the name of Copia
(194 BC) and throughout the entire Imperial Period enjoyed
a discreet fortune.
Archaeological dig campaigns during the XIX and XX centuries,
have brought about knowledge of the sites where the three
cities of Sibari, Thurii and Copia once stood, which can be
A visit to the Archaeological Park
There are various sites open, some can be visited with a
guide. The “Stombi” site throws light on Sibari
prior to its destruction, in that it presents the remains
of buildings and monuments, wells and furnaces for the production
The area known as “Parco del Cavallo” presents
the remains of Copia Thurii, which rose up on the remains
of Thoùrioi: monuments from the Roman era, among which
the Roman theatre stands out.
Other important sites are the “Prolungamento Strada”,
a continuation of the “Parco del Cavallo”, the
“Lungo Muro” and the “Casa Bianca”,
which preserves a part dating back to the IV century BC.
Place of interest
- Parco Archeologico di Sibari
- Museo Archeologico della Sibaritide