The Cedars Riviera, so-called for the cultivation of citrus particularly employed in the preparation of drinks and candied fruits, is the name that identifies the beautiful area of Calabria known as the Alto Tirreno Calabrese and that includes, traditionally, also a part of the mountainous territory located immediately behind the coastal area.
Beaches of fine dark sand and cobblestones, rugged coastline, sea beds inhabited by gorgonian, starfish and many species of fish are just some of the features that rendered Praia a Mare one of the most famous tourist destinations of Calabria.
The municipality of Praia a Mare, is not far from Maratea, bordering with Basilicata and Campania, it is inserted in the Pollino National Park, where extreme sports enthusiasts can enjoy rafting and canoeing along the nearby Lao river, one of the most important torrential rivers of Calabria.
A visit to Dino Island, located in the south, in front of Capo Arena is a must. The imposing rock spur, where the Primula palinuri grows is a protected species among the oldest of the Italian flora, it is famous for the presence of the following suggestive caves: la grotta azzurra, del leone, del frontone, delle sarde, del monaco e delle cascate.
Scalea is at 20 km south of Praia a Mare, it is a major seaside resort dating back to the Palaeolithic. The village has a wonderful historical centre arranged in tiers on the hill, the remains of ancient walls and picturesque narrow winding streets. The new part, with its many hotels, is built along the coast.
Diamante is known as the city of murals: over a hundred of them have been carried out on walls of the fishermen’s houses in the old town. They are part of the municipality of Cirella and its small island. In September, the Chilli Pepper Festival organized by the Italian Academy of chili pepper takes place in Diamante which is the homeland of the hot chilli pepper.
Between the enchanting sea of Amantea and Belmonte Calabro are located the two reefs of Isca, already known to Homer, a must for those who love to dive among reefs and coral. In 1991, the local WWF, has declared it the Blue Oasis of Isca Reefs (l’Oasi blu degli Scogli di Isca), a protected area that stretches around the rocks sunk in a beautiful rich seabed of flora and fauna. In these waters, as well as the seagrass meadows, it's also possible to see dolphins and the Caretta Caretta turtles.
The rocks, are the remains of an ancient promontory rising from the sea at a few hundred meters from the beach in Amantea. The location is reachable, arriving from the north, thanks to the SS18 Tyrrhenian inferior and, after Belmonte Calabro, following the road signs WWF.
Sea-watching and diving accompanied by guides is possible, but it is also possible to admire the beautiful seabeds without diving since the park features boats with a transparent keel.