BIVONGI

Located at the border between the provinces of Reggio Calabria and Catanzaro, Bivongi lies in the Stilaro Valley at the foot of Mount Consolino, in an area enriched by wonderful natural landscapes. Bivongi history dates back to the year one thousand. The first documental evidence of Bivongi is the Brebion written around 1050. The document describes the characteristics of the surrounding Monasteries, and bears witness of activities such as silk farming. Bobonges probably derived by the union of two settlements, Mangiuni where the Monastery of San Nicola was located, and Abatìa and Casale where the Church of Spirito Santo stands. Bobonges properties belonged to the Monastery of Arsafia that controlled the town in the Byzantine Age. Remains of the Monastery are still visible in Monasterace on the Stilaro river banks. Roger the Norman granted the monastery to the Certosa di Serra S. Bruno.




 


Address Viale G. Matteotti
  89040 Bivongi (RC)
Phone number 0964 731185
Fax 0964731476
Website www.comunebivongi.gov.it/
 

 

In the upper course of the Stilaro river the splendid Cascata del Marmarico (Marmarico waterfall) originates. It is among the highest waterfalls in Italy, located in the Folea valley named Marmarico fall. Marmarico means “slow” and “heavy”, perhaps deriving from the fact that the water seems to hang in motionless threads. It is 120 m high and is the uppermost waterfall in the Southern Apennines. The Cascata del Marmarico was recognized as a Meraviglia italiana (an Italian Marvel). Along the upper course of the Stilaro river, near the waterfall, the Woodwardia Radicans, a rare fern species, thrives. These plants mingle with different orchid species and this area is a real paradise for botanists.

Visitors who arrive at Bivongi can admire its characteristic old center and the ancient Main Church that houses pieces of local artists. Recent restoration interventions brought to light the remains of a primitive worship area and a 1300 altar. The existing 17th century church was completed after the 1783 earthquake and it is dedicated to Saint John the Baptist. The Monastery of San Giovanni Theristis, built in the 11th century, is the only Orthodox Christian Monastery in Italy and it hosts a monastic community belonging to the Romanian Orthodox Diocese for Italy. The Church of Mamma Nostra (Our Mother) is a 17th century church: its construction was initiated in 1610 on the foundations of a previous church that was demolished. The church was partially destroyed by the 1783 earthquake. The Mulinu do Furnu was built by the Cistercian monks to grind galena, a mineral coming from a mine in the Argentera hamlet. Galena was then melted in the oven, which gave the name to the mill. The mill has now become the information point for those who want to visit the Ecomuseum.



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