Sibari (CS)


Sybaris was founded between two rivers that the settlers called Chratis and Sybaris, at the end of the 8th century B.C., by a group of Achaeans coming from the Peloponnese. In 510 B.C., after a 70-year-long war, Krotoniates conquered the town, diverted the river course and flooded it. In 444-443 B.C. the Panhellenic foundation of Thurii, from the name of a nearby spring, took place; the town was later conquered by the Lucanians. It began to lose its importance and in 193 B.C. the Romans established there one of their colonies, and called it Copia. In 84 B.C. it became a Municipium and it developed again during the Imperial Period, in the 1st-3rd centuries A.D. During the 5th-6th centuries A.D. the town began to decline because the land rapidly turned into a marsh; one century later, the area was completely abandoned. Several excavation campaigns brought to light the remains of Copia, Thurii and the ancient Sybaris, the important Magna Graecia town founded by the Greek around 700 B.C. and destroyed by the Krotoniates around 510 B.C. Archaelogical evidences showed that Sybaris was attacked and destroyed by that Krotoniates because it was too powerful. The few Sybarites who survived took refuge in Greece, but they were back again and settled Thurii, whose foundation dates back to between 510 and 443 B.C. The town plan was developed by the renowned urban planner Hyppodamus of Miletus.


Address Piazza Iseliceo, Sibari
Phone number 0981 780542
Fax 0981 74005


Several excavation campaigns brought to light the remains of Copia, Thurii and the ancient Sybaris, the important Magna Graecia town founded by the Greek coming from Achaia around 700 B.C. and destroyed by the Krotoniates around 510 B.C. The Archaeological Park of Sybaris keeps the stratified remains of the three ancient cities of Sybaris, Thourioi and Roman Copia, a peculiarity that is unique in all the Western World. Excavation areas include Stombi, Casa Bianca and Parco del Cavallo. The most important site is "Parco del Cavallo", where old Roman monuments were found: a district organized along two main roads (plateiai) and the Roman Theater. Another significant site is “Casa Bianca” that keeps a built-up area of the 4th century B.C. with a circular tower of the same period. The Stombi site includes an urban area that was only partially reconstructed in 510 B.C.: Archaic age buildings and monuments like building foundations, wells and furnaces.

The mineral waters of Cassano allo Jonio have been renowned since the 16th century. However, even before that period, local people drank and employed them for different uses. In 1952, the Terme Sibarite corporation bought the abandoned thermal complex and carried out a study about the chemical, biological and therapeutic properties of the waters. By comparing the century-old results with more recent ones, no significant difference was found. Therefore, the chemical and chemical-physical characteristics have not changed: Cassano waters can be classified as “Hypothermal, Sulfurous and Medium-mineral”. The complex includes a thermal pool, tennis courts, bocce courts, a thermal park, an auditorium, clubs and pizza restaurants.

Sibari is a renowned tourist resort, with diverse facilities and services to answer the needs of an increasing number of vacationers. Laghi di Sibari is a widely renowned tourist area that also houses a modern and well-equipped marina.

The new National Archaeological Musuem of Sibaritide is annexed to the Archaeological Park of Sybaris. It is the main cultural and historical complex of the Ionian Cosenza coast. The complex houses the most important artifacts found in the area, including pre-colonial findings from the sites of Francavilla Marittima and Castiglione di Paludi. Almost all the materials kept in the museum were found in Francavilla Marittima: the site is extremely interesting because it was one of the main indigenous and flourishing pre-colonial settlements (Oenotrians). In its rich necropolis (in the Macchiabate area) several bronze ornaments worn by the dead were found, together with a Phoenician cup that dates back to the first half of the 8th century B.C., which might show that the two populations had some relationships (though, most probably, it was carried by the Greeks). The lack of any information about the life of the village (in Timpone della Motta) and its later destruction in 730 B.C. made the experts assume that the local population was reduced to slavery by the Greek colonists who came to found Sybaris. A further evidence is that a temple dedicated to Athena was erected on the remains of the village in Timpone della Motta. Very few signs of the archaic town are visible, and the Sanctuary of Athena is the main evidence of the Greek presence in the area during the Archaic period: in fact, all the remains dating to that age kept in the Museum were found in the Sanctuary area. Artifacts include a terracotta ex-voto of the 8th century B.C. reproducing a woman wearing a dress richly decorated with mythological scenes; fine ceramic fragments coming from different Greek cities; several Proto-Corinthian vases; two small bronze statues of a warrior and a girl; a 6th century bronze plaque for an aedicule to Athena erected by "Kleombrotos son of Dexilawos" who won in Olympia, as the ex-voto inscription reports.