Catania is a tenacious city, always able to resurrect and rethink itself always different and yet faithful to its essence. On one of the main gates of the city, Porta Garibaldi, stands the phrase “Melior de cinere surgo” or “Rinasco from the ashes more beautiful than before”. Catania is the emblem of beauty that survives and regenerates. Destroyed several times by earthquakes, invasions and eruptions, it has always managed to rise again, even after the earthquake of 1963 that razed the entire city to the ground. A tenacity that has made it more beautiful and interesting and that will allow you to appreciate its different personalities.
Catania will strike you for the warmth and smiles of its inhabitants, always ready for a suggestion or advice. It is a dynamic city in which you will always find interesting events as well as having a movida that attracts people from neighboring towns. Food and wine festivals, concerts and exhibitions make it one of the main centers of culture in Sicily.
Places not to miss in Catania:
- Piazza del Duomo in Catania: O Liotru or the elephant symbol and protector of Catania will welcome you when you enter the city.
- Bellini Garden: dedicated to the Catanese composer Vincenzo Bellini, is a parenthesis of nature and freshness in the city center, ideal for finding refreshment. Inside you will find the avenue of “Famous Men”, with the busts of the famous Giovanni Verga, Giuseppe Mazzini, Luigi Capuana, Mario Rapisardi.
- Cathedral of Sant’Agata: destroyed several times, it rises on the remains of ancient baths. With the Carrara marble facade and the statues of Sant’Agata distributed around has an imposing and enveloping beauty. The interior is majestic and inside are preserved the relics of St. Agatha and the tomb of Vincenzo Bellini, the famous musician from Catania.
- Mercato Pescheria: a colorful and noisy fish market as well as one of the symbols of everyday life in Catania where you can buy but also eat on the spot of good freshly caught fish.
- Market in Fera ‘o Luni: a daily market of fruits and other items.
- San Giovanni Li Cuti: a small fishing village within a city. You can admire the colorful gozzi of the fishermen who supply the restaurants with fresh fish. Inside the village there is also a black sand beach.
- Vincenzo Bellini Massimo Theatre: one of the symbols of Catania for one of its most famous characters. On the evening of its inauguration were present Giovanni Verga and Luigi Capuana.
- Catania underground: underground there are tunnels that extend for hundreds of meters and that once were air raid shelters during the Second World War. You can access from the Achillian baths, the church of San Giovanni alle Grotte and the Benedictine Monastery.
Flavors of Catania
If you are wondering what to eat in Catania, among the unmissable dishes we certainly recommend the arancino (a ball of rice and fried meat sauce), the crispelle or the schiacciate, the roasted artichokes and many other quick dishes that you will find in bars and bakeries. Among the first courses surely not to be missed is the pasta alla Norma with tomato sauce and fried eggplant but also the pasta with sardines and other fish first courses. In many parts of the city you will find embers to taste offal and grilled meat, even in butcher shops that in the evening turn into real banquets of delicacies. In this area you will taste unforgettable wines. The sea and the majestic Etna have created an association that has created intense wines that will conquer you at the first sip. Catania is a destination for different kind of travelers, it is up to you to decide in which way it will enter your heart because, we are sure, it will happen.