Catania is an ancient port city on the east coast of Sicily. It is located at the foot of Mount Etna, the highest active volcano in Europe. Catania has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its rich history, culture and architecture, which boasts some of the best Baroque monuments in Italy.
What should you see, do and experience in Catania?
The Piazza Duomo is a baroque pride of the city and at the same time houses several unmissable buildings. These include the 18th-century Palazzo dei Chierici, the Palazzo degli Elefanti, now the town hall, and the Duomo di Catania. In the middle of the square is the Elephant Fountain with the city’s landmark – a small elephant on which the obelisk rests.
Etna volcano is undoubtedly the city’s most characteristic feature. One attraction, for example, is Via Etna, which connects Piazza Duomo to the base of a volcanic hill. Along these you can admire elegant churches and palaces with dramatic scenery. You will also walk through Piazza Stesicoro, one of the liveliest squares in Catania. The entire area around Mount Etna is a protected national park, with many paths leading up and down the mountain. You can hike or climb around the volcano to the top, from where you can enjoy unforgettable views of Catania and the Ionian Sea.
Built in the 13th century, Ursino Castle survived an earthquake in 1693 and a few years earlier a volcano erupted, filling the moats with lava. It was the residence of the Aragonese dynasty and later became a famous prison. Today the Catania Museum is located here.Photo source: Shutterstock, Dreamstime, Unsplash.com