historical information

The city of Policoro stands on the plain of Metaponto, three kilometers from the Ionian Sea, near the Agri river where the remains of two ancient civilizations have been found: Siris and Heraclea. Ancient Siris was founded on the banks of the Sinni at the beginning of VII  B.C. by Colophones from Asia Minor. In the sixth century, it was already flourishing and threatened the nearby Sibari, which it destroyed shortly before falling victim to Crotone. From the alliance of Taranto and Thurii was born Heraclea on the banks of the Agri. The new city experienced a period of splendor, becoming the seat of the league of Italian cities. Here took place the first major clash between the Romans and Pyrrhus (280 B.C.). In the III. sec. passed into the orbit of Rome. The depopulation, during the Middle Ages cancels Heraclea, of which the small village called Policoro remains on a hill, later transformed into a baronial fief. The city then expands around the castle which takes its name from the family of Baron Berlingieri of Crotone, to whom the entire estate passed in 1893. In 1950 was the year of the turning point for the city which experienced rapid development and repopulation.

tourist route

History, archeology, beaches, nature and local products. These are the attractions of Policoro, the heart of the Ionian coast of Basilicata. The modern city built in the center of a very fertile territory is dominated by the Baronial Castle at the foot of which there is an urban layout with small houses called "casalini". Near the castle we can visit the "National Museum of Siritide" whit the finds from the excavations of the city of Siris, Heraklea and the necropolis of the Agri and Sinni valleys. Behind the Museum is the Archaeological Park in which are visible the urban systems of the two ancient cities. In the vicinity of the Park, in the Sacra area, you can admire the Sanctuary of Demeter and the Archaic Temple of Dionysus (VII century BC). Nearby is also the Sanctuary of the Madonna del Ponte (17th century). Among the monuments, in the modern part, in Piazza Heraclea we can see the bronze statue of Hercules fighting with the lion Meneo and the Mother Church with a beautiful bas-relief in wrought iron. In Piazza Segni stands the bronze statue of Antonio Segni and references to local traditions with the Greek amphitheater and the arches of Piazza Heraclea.


POPULAR AND RELIGIOUS FESTIVALS: Third Sunday of May Patronal Feast of the Madonna del Ponte; Last Sunday of May Feast in honor of the Madonna del Carmine; mid June Feast of San Giovanni Battista; last Sunday of September Feast in honor of the most holy doctors Cosima and Damiano. In May, the city turns red for the Strawberry Festival with conferences, tastings of strawberries and derived products for all gourmets. Among the summer events, in the month of August, the Blues in Town event takes place which aims to enhance all the cultural aspects of Basilicata, through an event strongly characterized by music. Policoro in Swing takes place from 21 to 29 August. At the LIDO DI POLICORO there is the Sea Fair and the Fried Fish Festival.

sea and nature

The tourist offer of Policoro is wide, the ideal destination for a relaxing holiday amidst archeology, crystal clear sea and unspoiled and wild nature of rare beauty. With the conformation of a flat strip, the coast extends for several kilometers, combining the blue of the sea with the intense green of the Mediterranean scrub, with a good concentration of well-equipped bathing complexes. Not to be missed is the tourist port of Marina di Policoro, which is part of the Marinagri complex. Mountain lovers can immerse themselves in the unspoiled nature of the WWF protected oasis of Bosco del Pantano. Inside the oasis you can go trekking on foot, by bicycle or on horseback or simply relax in the areas equipped for a break or a picnic. There are also many outdoor activities that can be practiced, such as golf, sailing, canoeing, windsurfing, diving in the depths of the Ionian Sea and sport fishing.


The gastronomic tradition of Policoro includes simple and tasty dishes that enhance the fruits offered by a very generous sea able to satisfy even the most demanding palates. Mackerel, cod, anchovies, sole, turbot, cuttlefish, octopus, squid, shrimp, tuna, sea bream, bream and lobster are the essential ingredients for the preparation of delicious first and second courses. The climate, humid and temperate, the fertile soils allow the cultivation of vegetables and many varieties of fruit among which the strawberry that has made the city famous all over the world stands out.

the policoro strawberry

Sweet, fragrant and full-bodied fruit, the Sabrosa variety is produced in Basilicata under the Candonga Fragola Top Quality brand. It is a unique and unmistakable strawberry for its elongated conical shape, for its flavor, aroma and color: red inside and out and it is a source of beneficial properties for health. In the fertile plain of Metaponto, known as Southern California, this variety has found the ideal habitat to become a unique strawberry. The plants are planted in October and begin to bear fruit from January to June. The sun and the warm wind that smells of the sea favor its production on about nine hundred hectares of land. Candonga is a 100% sustainable strawberry because it is the result of the good cultivation practices of qualified farms that guarantee the consumer the safety of production, traceability and respect for the environment. Strawberry has become the main ingredient of some local cuisine; not only as a dessert, but also as a first course.