Perched proper on the coast of Sicily, the Italian metropolis of Catania has loads going for it! With a historical past courting again 1000’s of years, there are heaps of one of the best issues to do in Catania – each in and simply outdoors town.
In a lot of methods, us included, Catania is seen as a gateway metropolis to all the opposite best places in Sicily to visit. That being stated, it’s properly value visiting in its personal proper – even when that’s a part of a wider go to to Sicily.
Now, though Catania can appear to be somewhat ‘tough across the edges’, it’s a metropolis that’s received a lot allure and the sort of metropolis you simply should dive proper in.
To be trustworthy, the primary few hours after arriving in Catania have been a blur of sensory overload – it’s a bustling metropolis, however that’s all a part of the allure and completely distinctive.
So, that will help you get essentially the most out of your time in Catania, I’m sharing a few of the spots we liked most about our go to. Check out a few of the epic locations to go to in Catania. Have an incredible journey travelling round Sicily.
1.) Go to Palazzo Biscari
The personal palace of Biscari is one beautiful spot to see while visiting Catania. You see, means again within the 1600s, the Prince of Biscari was given the correct to construct a stunning palace after a devastating earthquake.
These days, it nonetheless stands tall within the metropolis and is properly value taking a guided tour to take a peek inside. Not solely is it one of many largest palaces within the metropolis, however in my view, it’s one of many grandest.
While on a guided tour, take a peek on the attractive courtyard earlier than heading to see the grand corridor, hand-painted frescos and essentially the most lovely staircase. Truthfully, this place is a gem to discover.
Now, I received’t spoil the shock by popping in a photograph of the interiors (it’s actually that attractive), so ensure to go over when you arrive in Sicily.
2.) Take a Journey to Castello Ursino
Constructed means again within the 1200s, out of lava stone, visiting Castello Ursino is likely one of the greatest issues to do in Catania if you wish to discover town’s lengthy historical past.
Sure, it won’t be a baroque constructing that’s so well-known in Sicily, however Castello Ursino pre-dates these designs and homes a lot to see. It actually dates again to the center ages.
Now, I sort of felt that Castello Ursino was extra spectacular from the surface (if I’m trustworthy). However don’t let that put you off heading inside – it’s value seeing the varied artworks, work and sculptures that now name the fortress residence.
3.) Go to Monastery of San Nicolò l’Area
The Monastery of San Nicolò l’Area won’t appear to be an apparent selection for a spot to go to however belief me right here. If you wish to know extra in regards to the historical past of Catania, then you definitely’ll need to come right here.
Now, guided excursions occur on most days and so they usually final round 75-minutes. Although, all the time examine the instances they function and remember that if you’d like an English tour, then you definitely’ll need to go to at round 1 pm.
Lastly, to e book a tour, head to their website the place you’ll be capable of pop an electronic mail over to the crew and safe your home.
4.) See the Greek-Roman Theatre(s)
Constructed out of rocks supplied by the close by Mount Etna, the Roman Theater of Catania is one epic a part of town to see while strolling round.
Sure, you’ll need to pay a small entrance charge to have a nosey across the website nevertheless it’s properly value it.
With 1000’s of years of historical past, it’s the sort of place the place you’ll be able to study extra in regards to the Roman empire and its constructing strategies.
Visits will solely final round 25-minutes and it’s very easy to squeeze into a visit.
5.) Make a journey to Mount Etna
Yeah, I do know, Mount Etna isn’t Catania – however hear me out!
Bear in mind I discussed that Cantania is typically thought-about a gateway to wider Sicily? Properly, this is likely one of the instances when that rings true. Visiting Mount Etna is definitely among the best issues to do in Catania should you’re in search of a day journey away from the bustling streets.
Now, among the best methods we discovered to do that is by booking this Mount Etna tour that departs from Catania itself. Not solely will you get picked up from Catania, however you’ll head excessive up, close to the summit of Mount Etna in a 4×4 or small bus – all with a professional information.
Better of all, this Mount Etna tour will present a tipple of native wines from the area, too. In spite of everything, the terroir is so good round right here.
That being stated, should you fancy mountain climbing, be warned it’s a 3,300-meter hike and is fairly arduous. Additionally, don’t neglect that Mount Etna is likely one of the most lively volcanoes in Europe – so all the time go together with a information.
6.) See the Gates of Porta Garibaldi
Porta Garibaldi dates means again to the 1700s when it was constructed as a triumphal arch within the very centre of Catania. To at the present time, you’ll be able to stroll by way of the gates and witness among the best celebratory gates in Italy.
You see, Porta Garibaldi was constructed to have fun the wedding of the Bourbon king and royalty from Austria. I imply, that’s some marriage ceremony reward, proper?
Anyway, it’s very easy to see and properly value taking an in depth gander on the statues and artistry on the gate itself. I don’t perceive Latin however somebody did say that there’s a quote round Catania rising up. Apparently, it’s in connection to the fixed rebuilding of Cantania because of tectonic exercise.
Afterwards, take a while to go to the markets and wander by way of the each day stalls that line the streets previous Fontana dell’Amenano and round Porta Uzeda.
7.) Go to Catania Cathedral
Okay, so Catania Cathedral might be essentially the most lovely construction within the metropolis and one spot you received’t need to miss.
Better of all, it’s situated proper within the historic centre of Catania, making it very easy to go to on most days of the week. As soon as right here, make sure you look out for the Norman apses that date again nearly 1000 years. Oh, and take a peek on the beautiful nave, too.
Completely free to enter, visiting is likely one of the greatest issues to do in Catania while you stroll across the metropolis.
Simply remember, there are companies that go on all year long right here. This implies you may rock up and discover the church closed to sightseers.
8.) Go to Giardini Bellini
The oldest of all of the parks in Catania, Giardini Bellini is properly value going for a stroll on a heat day.
Not solely are the grounds completely attractive, however the backyard additionally has essentially the most ornate stone flooring to the upper factors. It’s so intricate and it’s all the time caught in my reminiscence.
One factor to recollect is Catania can get highly regarded and that the Sicilian solar is powerful. Put on a hat and take sunblock with you – the Italian solar isn’t any joke!
Afterwards, take a stroll to Basilica della Collegiata and absorb one other one among Catania’s lovely church buildings to see.
9.) Head over to Castello di Aci
Not too distant from the centre of Catania is Castello di Aci. It’s a few 15-minute drive and properly value visiting for its lengthy historical past.
Now, Castello di Aci sits on a reasonably dramatic cliffside that overlooks the seas surrounding Sicily itself. The views are unimaginable.
Sure, you’ll pay a small entry charge to realize entry to Castello di Aci nevertheless it’s completely value it. As soon as inside, you’ll get to wander across the small museum and take a look at the grounds themselves. We liked it.
Afterwards, hop on again to the centre of Catania and take a look at Scirocco Sicilian Fish Lab.
We had one of the best calamari and native fried fish. Served as road meals, it’s received a number of seats outdoors and all are served in a paper cone. It was all so good.
10.) Spot the Fountain of the Elephant
The image of town, seeing the Fountain of the Elephant is likely one of the greatest issues to do in Catania. In truth, it’s arduous to overlook if you’re within the historic centre.
Constructed nearly 300 years in the past, it was created by the famend Giovanni Battista Vaccarini. To at the present time, it’s stated that the Fountain of the Elephant is likely one of the protectors of Catania – from the brut power of an erupting Mount Etna.
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