Forza D’Agrò is a small town of about a thousand inhabitants, 420 above the level of the Ionian Sea, and it is a little pearl that represents a happy corner where close ties with culture and traditions still tend to hold back innovation.
Founded by the Greeks between the 8th and 5th centuries BC. they called it ‘Arghennon Akron’, meaning ‘silver promontory’, from which it derives its current name.
After the Roman conquest in 135 A.D., it remained in Byzantine hands for about three centuries.
It was the Norman Count Roger who had the castle built and founded the ‘Vicum Agrillae’.
The landscape is dotted with structures that never exceed two storeys in height, leaving ample space to observe the castle itself, its fortified walls and guardhouse.
There is also the beautiful 15th-century Cathedral of the S.S. Annunziata, the Church of the Triad and the Durazzesco Arch (in Gothic-Catalan style) accessible from Piazza Cammareri, which also provides access to the former Augustinian convent. This convent, which was built between 1559 and 1591 on the initiative of St. Agostino Risini, has a cloister characterised by large square pillars surmounted by full-centred arches, each corresponding to a window.
Around the town, it is still possible to appreciate the noble palaces of the period: Palazzo Miano, Palazzo Mauro, Palazzo Garufi and Palazzo Bondì.
Surely you are aware that Forza D’Agrò was the location for one of the most famous films in the history of cinema: The Godfather (1972-1974-1990) and another series of minor films. Few, however, will have realised that the town indirectly provided the location for a 3D animated film by Pixar. We are talking about Cars 2 from 2011, in which we find a church that can easily be traced back to that of the Santissima Annunziata.