Ciao Brit, on the last October you and your friends/colleagues decided to spend your holidays in Badolato, why?
Yes, it was a great period for all. The first trip took place on October 7th-14th and it was a trip for a female cycling club. The second trip took place on October 28th -31st October and it was a strategy trip for the company “Better People”. I arranged the program for the trip of the female cycling club and we were a group of seven women. We decided to spend this kind of holiday in Badolato, because we wanted to exercise in the mountains and we wanted unspoiled nature and an authentic environment. The female cycling club decided to go to a special place that wasn’t touristy and a place that was new for all the group. I knew the area as I own a house there. We bought a villa in Badolato – at Villa Collina - due to the area’s authenticity, its beautiful unspoiled coastline and because it is a less touristy place. The citizens of Badolato are friendly, open and helpful. The town is welcoming. Badolato and Calabria are beautiful undiscovered parts of Italy.
How did your holidays go and what did you do? Can you tell us something about the daily-program of the week? What did it mean for you to cycling between the coastline (sea/beaches), hills, mountains and a lot of old medieval villages? What were your impressions and emotions?
We arrived in Lamezia by airplane and the first day we went shopping for groceries. We had dinner at the house – sat on the terrace and enjoyed the mild evening climate. The second day - Gathered bikes, got ready for the first mountain trip from Badolato to Sant’Andrea Ionio and to San Sostene and back to Badolato. When changing the pedals we needed some “man-power”, and a local mechanic plus the local gardener were helpful. We had a coffee break in San Sostene, where we sat in the sun and enjoyed the local life – where several citizens of San Sostene said hello and tried to chat with us in both Italian and German. The trip was longer than expected because the girls wanted to take a lot of pictures on the way – the scenery was/is spectacular and unique. We had lunch on the terrace at the house and we enjoyed a few hours in the sun with a lovely view. A guided tour was arranged where we visited the local monastery which was a great experience. It gave an insight into the history of the monastery and its influence on the area. In addition to that we went to the old village of Badolato - an interesting and great old medieval village with plenty of history. Our guide was very interesting and experienced. We were introduced to an ancient time and got knowledge about how a lifestyle of an ordinary citizen of Badolato looked like. After 1½ hour of the guided tour we went to a local restaurant called “Catojo dello Spinetto” where we were welcomed by a cosy candlelit arcade and were welcomed like we were family members. The Catojo’s staff served a delicious dinner and we enjoyed the evening to the fullest. In the third day we spent a beautiful morning swim in the ocean Mar Ionio. It was sunny and once again Badolato impressed us with its beautiful coastline. After our breakfast we went on our bikes and drove trough Badolato Marina and Badolato Borgo (old village) and we ended up in the lovely mountain-village, Santa Caterina Ionio. We enjoyed several cups of coffee and afterwards we headed home. We had our lunch in a restaurant called Donna Stella, a nice family-owned restaurant with great food. We once again enjoyed lunch and coffee with an impeccable view of the mountains. In the afternoon we went on a nice walk along the dried river. Everyone we met on our way waved kindly and greeted us. At night we walked to a local restaurant near by called L’Ancora, located next to the ocean. It was very busy and was packed with locals. The owner was friendly and he arranged a table for us, in the nice garden. He apologized for any delay – and served starters on the house. We had a lovely evening and a magical walk home, in the moonlight, along the beach. The fourth day we unfortunately had to go home, and leave the beautiful Badolato.
Tell us something about the “strategy tour” for the company “Better People”. Me and my husband arranged a company strategy-trip to Badolato on October 28th -31st. We were a group of 8 employees. Why? We have choosen Badolato because the two owners of the company “betterpeople” each own a house in Badolato (me and my husband). Well, we needed a quiet spot with no interruptions with time to focus and we wanted to give the employees a great experience to strengthen the team. Badolato was for us a place with unspoiled nature and an authentic environment and was a new interesting destination for all the employees, and wasn’t touristy. What did you do, how was it: We arrived so late on the 28th night and got pizza at the local pizzeria who makes great pizzas. The second day, we had breakfast at early and drove to old medieval village of Badolato for a city-walk. Thanks to this tour we showed to the employees the beautiful houses and the fantastic scenery. Followed by a good cup of coffee at a café. At midday began the work and stopped at 6 pm. We had few drinks and the late afternoon we were picked up by a driven to Badolato old village again, to have dinner at the beautiful and authentic local restaurant “Catojo dello Spinetto”. We were welcomed by a nice candlelit arcade and with lovely wine and delicious food. We had a nice evening, which turned into a small party, where we danced and had a blast. We were driven home at midnight. The following morning we all went jogging by the ocean – and some even went for a swim. The third day we had breakfast at the house and started work at 10 am. At 2 pm we went to Soverato for a walk in the city and at the beach. We had a coffee with good sweets at “Soverato Dolci”. We had dinner at the terrace with a beautiful view to the mountains and the ocean Mar Ionio. After four days we were going home and everyone had had a lovely stay. We went home with lots of positive energy and a new team-spirit.
Several years ago, you and your family decided to buy a villa in Badolato. How you heard of Badolato and Why you have done this choice? Are you enjoying Badolato and its slow life? Why? Badolato is…! Come on, write here three words to describe it. Continues, with positive and negative aspects too…(about Badolato and Calabria too)?
10 years ago we decided to invest in a house abroad. We incidentally saw an advertisement in a Danish newspaper about a new project in southern Italy. It was possible to go on a trip to see the area before deciding whether we wanted to invest in a house (that wasn’t build yet) or not. We went on the trip and were totally breath taken by the area of Badolato. It was love at first sight. It was so different from the northern part of Italy, where we had spent 10 years of holidays previously. This area was so authentic and beautiful – with such a magical coastline we didn’t know still existed in Europe. We made the decision to build and by a house in Villa Collina right after just one weekend-trip. After 10 years of owning a house in Badolato, we think of it as our second home. We love the area and enjoy Badolato and its ease lifestyle.
It’s very relaxing and calming compared to our daily routine. The weather makes a big difference as well as the people and friendliness we are greeted with everywhere. You have a lot of opportunities and you feel at home. Badolato is an undiscovered diamond of Europe - with friendly local people, a coastline you couldn’t imagine exists in Europe as well as being an interesting place to visit historically. We have visited for 10 years now, however we still find new areas, places to see and things to do.
The difference from Denmark to Badolato is first of all the weather – Denmark is often cold and rainy. I always describe Badolato as the place where “the sky is higher” compared to Denmark.
Which kind of similarities and differences with Denmark?
The lifestyle is more relaxed and people are not so strapped down by the time Badolato. In Denmark everything has to be ON TIME, people are stressed and often haven’t time to talk. In Badolato people stop for coffee when they go shopping. When they meet someone they know, they take their time to talk with each other. The people take care of their families and elderly and they have time to admire the children. In Denmark we don’t markets like in Badolato/Soverato. We buy everything in shops, warehouses and malls. When you shop for groceries in Badolato you receive fresh food –, cheeses, meat greens and fruits which makes cooking so much more fruit. It’s a bit of an adventure to go to the food markets and buy fresh ingredients and super fun to chat with the farmer who has made and grown your purchase. It makes it more personal. With that being said it’s also very easy to live in a town like Badolato because everything works like a modern society. If something does not work it can always be fixed – people are helpful – it may not be at that day - but it will be fixed at some point. We have brought friends and family to Badolato and no one have ever regretted their stay in Badolato. Everyone has been very exited about the place. We will definitely recommend visiting Badolato (and this part of Italy) to everyone.
Have you got other ideas for the future? My husband and I have a dream that one day we can stay for a longer period of time and not just in the holidays. Perhaps come there in the cold months when the weather is bad in Denmark.