Catania is the second-largest city of Sicily which is located on the east coast of the Italian southern island. This beautiful place is most popular among all the tourists as it happens to be a perfect place for a holiday. From its enthralling scenic views to an amazing culture and historical background, Catania surely catches a lot of attention from all the tourists. Furthermore, the prominent position, as well as the weather of the city, makes it one favorite place to visit for tourists from around the world. While you are soon planning to pack your bags and to fly to this place, here are the 12 major attractions that you must not miss while exploring the beautiful Catania.
Basilica Cattedrale Sant’Agata
This Cathedral of Catania is a beautifully constructed structure and is a known masterpiece of Norman and Baroque architecture. This Cathedral is located in the center of the old town, and the same is considered to be one of the major famous tourist attractions of the city. This Cathedral was originally constructed in the year 1079 over the ruins of a Roman Baths. After this, it has been for a number of times because of the frequent earthquakes in this region. You will come across beautiful details inside of this cathedral as you start exploring the same.
The Ursino Castle is one of the finest castles of Sicily. This is a relic from the 13th century which was built as a part of the Kingdom of Sicily by Emperor Frederick II. Today, this castle happens to be one of the most visited places of the city. This castle is still able to stand in its original and remarkable condition with its four original towers. You can simply walk around this beautiful castle and get the opportunities to capture your photos.
Virtually, the city sits in the shade of the huge Mount Etna and this amazingly active strat-volcano is one of the major tourist attractions of the city. Mount Etna stands at a height of 3329 meters which also makes it the tallest active volcano in Europe. The most recent eruption here took place in the year 2015 where the volcano discharged some lava. This place is very safe to visit as various tour operators offer day trips to this volcano using all the safety measures.
Piazza Del Duomo
Piazza Del Duomo happens to be one of the major tourist attractions of Catania and it attracts a number of people for a variety of reasons. Located within the heart of the city and very close to the port area, this place serves as a major tourist spot. You can explore the fine pieces of architecture of the surrounding buildings here. Do not forget to catch a glimpse of the impressive Fontana Dell’ Elefante, the Fontana Dell’Amenano in the very center.
San Nicolo I’Arena
The Chiesa di San Nicolo I’Arena is constructed on the site of a Greek Acropolis and it is known to be the largest church in Sicily. The ancient Greek columns do not really compliment the design of this church and hence it looks a little mismatched. What attracts the tourists here is what’s inside of this church. You can spot a number of arches, columns, and other religious decorations.
Giardini Bellini/Parco Maestranza
This beautiful place in Catania is all about relaxation and rejuvenation in the lap of nature. Thus, any nature-lover is going to love this place until his heart’s content. The beautiful Bellini garden is situated on the eastern side of the park and the same comprises of a beautiful fountain and various flower beds. You can take a stroll in the walking trails which are covered by luscious forests here. The tranquility of this place is surely going to mesmerize you.
The Aci Castello is located in the charming village of Castello which was originally constructed around the castle lying on the coast since the Norman conquests of Sicily. This castle is a beautiful sight as it sits apart from the village on to a rock outcrop which faces the sea. The castle was constructed in the year 1076 and today it has become an iconic landmark of Catania and Sicily. Catch a glimpse of some of the most fantastic views that this castle provides.
Catania Orto Botanico
The beautiful Botanical Gardens of Catania are located in the grounds of the University close to the Bellini Garden in the center of the historic old town. This is one of the most amazing places to visit within the city. If you are seeking a relaxing trip in order to expand your knowledge about the beautiful nature, this is certainly the place to be in. This garden has a beautiful display of plants, trees, shrubs, and several exotic species from throughout the world.
Lido Azzurro is one of the main stretches of beach of Catania which is yet another amazing place to relax and to soak yourself up in the sun. This is a fantastic beach that is located to the south of Catania and very close to the port and harbor. The beautiful golden stretches of soft sand of this beach and the waters of the warm Mediterranean Sea make this place a perfect picnic spot. This place also has a children’s play area.
The Roman Theatre dates back to the 2nd century AD and is made of stones, bricks, lava, and marble. The oval shape of this place is very fascinating for any tourist to visit. If you have a passion for antiquity and archaeology, the Roman Theater is the place that you must not miss on visiting while you are touring around Catania. It is recommended to hire a guide in order to gain more knowledge and information about the place.
San Giovanni Li Cuti
San Giovanni Li Cuti is a beautiful beach of Catania that is certainly a true natural phenomenon that features black volcanic sands, ash, as well as a number of volcanic rocks. This place is located on the east coast of Sicily and is considered to be a great place to escape from the hustle-bustle of the city. You will find a small harbor at the northern end of the beach. Around this place are sections of wooden decking with sunbeds and you can simply relax.
Monastero dei Benedettini
The beautiful Benedictine Monastery complex is situated in the center of Catania and this place is considered to be the largest examples of its own kind within the continent. This place has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and happens to be a beautiful piece of architecture. Hence, all the connoisseurs of fine architecture are going to have a good time exploring this monastery. This place was founded in the year 1559 and today it happens to be a large amalgamation of a number of styles.
Just So You Know…
- Catania is known to be a gourmet diner’s paradise and being a connoisseur of food, you will find a number of delectable dishes here.
- The city has Mediterranean weather featuring long hot summers. Thus, do not get surprised if you find the temperature going over 40 degree Celsius.
- Catania is known to be the second largest city of Sicily after Palermo. The total GDP of the city is the US $6.6 billion.
Get Some Culture:
- Enjoy the amazing festival Internazionale di Tango Della Sicilia which is entirely dedicated to the passionate Tango dance. This is one of the most important events in the city.
- The province of Catania also hosts the Acireale Festival where the beautiful town turns itself into a colorful kingdom.
Grab A Bite:
- Dine at the Osteria Antica Marina which is one of the most amazing places to find good food. The interiors of this place are purely rustic.
- If you are a fan of pizza, visit II Pizzorantino to relish upon a variety of delicious pizzas. This place is open during weekends only.