Catania, the town of Etna, is about one hundred and twenty kilometres from Marina di Ragusa. It was also razed to the ground by the earthquake of 1693 and its reconstruction gave the city a completely baroque appearance. Some structures were saved and among these it is worth mentioning the Ursino Castle built between 1239 and 1250 by the Emperor Federico II.
Another surviving structure was the Cathedral, probably due to Arab workers. Other very precious works of art are kept in the Church of Sant'Agata, the patron saint of the city. Moreover some decorative elements of the ancient city have been reused in the Elephant fountain, symbol of the city, placed in the centre of the Piazza del Duomo. There are two relics of ancient Catania: the statue of the elephant in lava stone and a granite obelisk with hieroglyphics related to the cult of Isis. The square is dominated by the bulk of the beautiful church of the monastery of Sant'Agata. The fish market contrasts with its popular character with the noble solemnity of the Piazza del Duomo: the environment enlivened by a lively market is dominated by the mighty surviving structures of the sixteenth-century city walls. Also worth a visit is Palazzo Biscari, a most interesting patrician palace in Catania. Inside, passing through rooms decorated with paintings from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, one enters the music hall, one of the masterpieces of the southern rococo.
From Piazza Duomo you can walk along the very long Via Etnea which crosses Via Stesicoro where you can find the ruins of the Roman amphitheatre and the monument to Vincenzo Bellini. Continuing on, we reach the Villa dedicated to the great master from Catania and the Massimo Bellini Theatre, inaugurated in 1890, dedicated to him.
Texts and images are the property of biancoeblu.com, copying and reproduction in any form is strictly forbidden.
Catania is a city rich in historical monuments such as churches, noble palaces and museums. It is a metropolis that offers heterogeneous landscapes concentrated in a very restricted area, on one side it is bathed by the sea and on the other it rises on the slopes of Etna, the most active volcano in Europe.