REGGIO CALABRIA was one of the first ancient Greek settlements on the Italian mainland; today, it’s Calabria’s biggest town by some distance, with a population of over 180,000 – but also one that’s been synonymous for years with urban decline and the influence of the local mafia, or ’Ndrangheta. The most attractive areas are the long, mainly pedestrianized Corso Garibaldi – the venue for Calabria’s liveliest passeggiata – and the lungomare, the seafront esplanade that affords wonderful views of the Sicilian coastline and, occasionally, Mount Etna. At the southern end of the Corso, you can see remains of sixth-century-BC city walls and a Roman bathing complex. Just off the Corso lies Reggio’s Duomo, an airy building heavily restored after the 1908 earthquake.
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