Spilinga is a small town in the province of Vibo Valentia in the southern region of Calabria: the toe of Italy’s boot. The town’s name derives from the Greek spelunga or “cave.”
Though Spilinga and its surrounding area abound in caves, the town is likely best known as the birthplace of the spreadable sausage ‘nduja. The dish is said to be derived from the French andouille which was introduced to the Italian peninsula after Napolean’s conquest of Naples in the beginning of the Eighteenth Century. The dish was interpreted by the people of Calabria in the hinterland near the seaside town of Capo Vaticano. Namely, Spilinga. Natually, Spilinga is now home to the Sagra della ‘Nduja, a festival held each August.
Just outside the town is a grotto dedicated to the Madonna delle Fonti. The site is in one of many natural caves, some of which were home to Basilian monks.
Though is Spilinga is far from a hotbed of tourists, its proximity to the beach resorts of Ricadi and Tropea make it a nice destination for travelers.