The first piece of advice once you have arrived in Gerace is to forget about your cell phones, work appointments and leave your worries at home. Just let yourself be taken in by the charm and the magic of this enchanting town or - so it was described in October 2000 by the President of the Republic of Italy - It was included in the Top Ten of the most beautiful villages in Italy.
Therefore it will no doubt captivate you with its ancient Castle, its noble edifices, the Co-cathedral and its many churches . Not forgetting the buildings, some, of which have Greek-Byzantine origin even if the religious and civil heart bears the strong imprint of Ruggero I of Sicily. He was known as the Norman who transformed a small town into a thriving center. Craft stores and local shops carved out of the tuff limestone rocks upon which Gerace was founded. Even the tasty cuisine is perfectly in line with the guidelines of the Mediterranean Diet, listed on November 16, 2010 by UNESCO on the list of The Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
Surrounded by nature with its lush, changing colors and with the changing of seasons, it is the pearl of Aspromonte National Park of which it is a part and which surrounds it. Almost to protect its nobility, this proud village stands proudly perched high on a hill and just as icing on the cake – it allows for a three - hundred and sixty degree view on much of the territory of the Locride area to which it belongs. The “Jasmine Coast” as it is also called for the cultivation of the Jasmine plant This elegant plant with fragrant flowers, mostly collected by the local women – also known in local language as the “gelsominaie” is then exported especially to France to be used in the preparation of perfumes. Moreover, as evidence of the inventiveness of the people of Gerace, the jasmine plant is also the main ingredient in products such as a local aromatic liqueur, cookies and a cream that is used to fill delicious chocolates made in the area.
A precious, rare unicum of history, art and nature that is still reflected in the description made by Edward Lear. Lear was an English traveler, writer, illustrator and naturalist whom during his Grand Tour to discover the beauty of Italy described Gerace in his book, "Diary of a Journey on Foot - Reggio Calabria and its province (25 July-5 September 1847)" in the following way: "Full of beautifully situated buildings , set on the narrow edge of a rock...marveling at so many views on every side; every rock, sanctuary or building in Gerace seemed to be arranged and colored especially for artists..." Elegant and so majestic as to be called the "Florence of the South" among other names such as the "Sacred City" - Gerace, in the early 1700s had 128 churches, some attached to convents and monasteries. It was the creation of a grand dream: that of Ruggero the Norman, the descendant of the Altavilla Dynasty, Count of Calabria and the first Great Lord of Sicily, born in 1031 in France, in Normandy, almost certainly in the village of Hauteville-la Guichard and arrived in Italy, at the age of 26, together with his elder brother Robert Guiscard, to conquest new territories.