Most visitors to Reggio leave without having ventured into the great massif of Aspromonte, the last spur of the Apennines on the tip of Italy’s boot. Here you can be on a beach and a ski slope within the same hour, passing from the brilliant, almost tropical vegetation of the coast to dense forests of beech and pine that rise to nearly 2000m. Although it recently became a national park, the thickly forested mountain has not yet shown any sign of becoming a tourist destination. This is mostly due to its reputation as the stronghold of the ’Ndrangheta, the Calabrian Mafia, and as such most Italians would think you mad for going there. On top of this, the area remains virtually unsigned, and the oppressive tree cover rarely breaks to provide views. If you’re in a car take notice of the Strada Interotta (“Road interrupted”) signs you’ll find at the entrances: don’t even think about attempting the rocky dirt tracks across the range unless you are driving an off-road vehicle.
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