Near Us

Brief mentions of the village. Famous since ancient times, the port of Ulysses was for many centuries the ancient port official Catania, until, in 1381, was finally buried by a river of lava flowed from a fissure eruption that began between the towns of Etna Mascalcia, Tremestieri and Gravina.

The huge lava flow wiped out the village and also left a small creek that forms now a delightful bay.

The beautiful sea, the venerable church of St. Mary, the watchtower, the fisherman's house, the streets of the village, the old watchtower and old fishing boats are the pieces of a valuable mosaic called Ognina.

Already known to ancient historians, was so well known as to write so many pages of history and even inspire poets. For more than four centuries, disappeared the old Port of Ulysses, was an important seaport village which became one of the main centers of commerce by sea between the province of Catania and the places where the products were intended, as a result could not even hold the primacy in the construction of boats. In fact, until the late 50s, the shipwrights of Ognina were considered the best on the east coast of Etna.

It 'necessary to distinguish between the old and the new Ognina. Its not a proper name but a common name: Lògnina or Longone, is a term that indicated the ports fitted with perforated stones for berthing of ships. The Longoni were the cleats mooring docks, in fact we find Ognina in Syracuse, Sardinia and Elba Island.

The Ognina Catania was called Porto Ulisse (or calcidico). A great port built by Chalcis in the eighth century. B.C. which then underwent other occupations including that of the Greeks and the Romans of Hieron.

Porto Ulisse was the port of ancient official Katane. Its geographical position made ​​him almost unavoidable meeting point of the Mediterranean sea lanes. Could hold nearly 250 ships but disappeared beneath the volcanic eruption of 1381. What is left of the great Porto Ulisse (now buried under the boardwalk of the city) and who came to the area of Gaito, is the current port of Ognina.

Virgil, Aeneid, describes him wide, from the calm water surface inside the mouth and sheltered from the winds of misfortune: "Portus ab accessu ventorum IMMOTUS et ingens ipse". After the eruption of 1669 Lognina still existed thanks to the work of reconstruction of the Duke of Camastra, the Duke Uzeda and Family Battle Mancini, who is called the space in front of the harbor.

Today it remains the only port, which together with the small fishing port of Ognina Guard - San Giovanni Li Cuti, are enchanting places of the cliff town.

Tourist Destinations

Catania overlooking the Ionian Sea, in the Gulf that bears the name of the city.

Since 2002, the historic center of Catania, which has several splendid monuments, is part of the UNESCO world heritage site.

The underground river Amenano through it and reaches the surface at the point where it is located in the homonymous fountain in Piazza Duomo, in a very impressive system.

The patron saint, Saint Agatha, is much revered. The occasion of his festival (February 3 to 5) his relics are carried in procession from the Cathedral, where they are normally kept.

The University of Catania is the oldest on the island, having been founded in 1434.

Among the famous people of Catania, are worthy of mention the composer Vincenzo Bellini, the writer Giovanni Verga, who gave to Italian literature unforgettable characters in his novel I Malavoglia.

Archaeology: Roman Aqueduct, Greek Theatre, Roman Amphitheater, Odeon, Terme della Rotonda, Spa address, Achelliane Spa, Roman Baths, and Acropolis of Catania, Church and Hypogeum Sant'Euplio, Roman Forum, Hypogeum Square.

Architecture: Cathedral, Seminary of clerics, Platamone Palazzo, Castello Ursino, Port Charles V, Uzeda Door, Church of St. Agatha in Prison, Church of St. Agatha of the hotel, The Church of St. Agatha Vetere, Fontana di Sant'Agata Church of Santa Maria de Jesus, Town Hall, Church of St. Clare, St. Mary's Church Aid and House of Loreto Church of the Holy Trinity, Benedictine Monastery, Church of St. Benedict, St. Nicholas Church, Church of St. Francis and 'Immaculate Church of San Giuliano, the church of San Biagio, Church of the Friars Minor, Collegiate, University Palace, Badia di Sant'Agata, Port Ferdinand (Garibaldi), Teatro Bellini, Post Office Building, Villa Bellini Palace justice, Biscari Palace, Church of St Cajetan Caves, Seminar of clerics, Confraternity of the Whites, Monument to Cardinal Dusmet, Via Crociferi.

Museums, libraries and archives: Museum of the landing in Sicily, Cinema Museum, Library Provincial Art Gallery, Maps Show oldest - Collection La Gumina, Collection of the storyteller Franco Trincale, Permanent Exhibition of vintage radios Museum of the study, Museum of Paleontology, University museums botanical museum-house "Giovanni Verga", Bellini civic Museum, Museum of Zoology, museum Ursino Castle, museum "Emilio Greek."

Territory of nature and landscape: Oasis Simeto, Villa Bellini Villa Pacini, Caves of Ulysses, La Playa, La Cliff.

Festivals and folklore: Feast of Saint Agatha Feast of Our Lady of Carmel Feast of Santa Rita, Giro dell 'Etna, Association "Art Puppet F.lli Naples"

Food and cakes: The most representative dishes are pasta alla Norma, served with a sauce of eggplant, or Ripidadu snowed, a mound of rice with squid ink, adorned at the top with tomato sauce and ricotta, clearly symbolizing the top Etna covered by snow and inflamed by lava flows. Maccu, "Minne di Sant'Agata," Cassate Sicilian, Cannoli, Olivette di Sant'Agata, Almond Granita also consumed at breakfast, accompanied by a croissant.

Symbol of the typical gastronomy are the arancini, rice timbales small egg-shaped, enclosing a heart of sauce and that are fried, after being breaded. The fish is the star of the table Catania, especially oily fish, which participates in the condiments homemade pasta.


Visit Catania

What to visit and see in Catania: museums, monuments, churches. The premises and the pubs and discos, shopping and gastronomy, excursions to Mount Etna

Monuments, art and culture

2700 years of history, stunning scenery and a lively nightlife. Has a thousand faces waiting to be discovered, Catania. Old town, medieval and baroque, the cradle of theater and music, the town of Etna enchants its visitors in a thousand and one ways. An ideal visit can only start from Piazza Duomo, the heart of the town of Etna. At the center you will see immediately the fountain with the elephant symbol of Catania since 1200 and placed there in conformation in the 700 by Vaccarini. On the square facing the cathedral, built in the twelfth century, but rebuilt in 1669-after the terrible earthquake and eruption that hit the city the Cathedral with the Chapel of St. Agatha (patron saint of Etna) and the Palace of the Elephants, based the Town Hall. From here there is also the most famous street of Catania, Via Etnea where you can enjoy magnificent baroque buildings with facades made of lava dust and stop at one of the many shops and bakeries present. A real triumph of Baroque continues Crociferi Street, one of the most picturesque Sicilian town, thanks to the magnificent religious buildings such as the Church of St. Benedict, the Jesuit Church and the Church of San Giuliano. Since the eighteenth century, takes a leap backwards, coming to the Middle Ages and the Castello Ursino, the only building to survive the Etnea whims and history. Since 1934, the castle houses the Museum where you can see paintings, sculptures, bronzes and ceramics from different eras. Do not miss the Benedictine Monastery, one of the largest in Europe, while culture lovers recommend the house-museum of the writer Giovanni Verga and the Museum Emilio Greek.

Green, excursions to Mount Etna and gastronomy

But Catania rhymes with green and nature. The Bellini Gardens is definitely the place to relax preferred to locals. With its 70,000 square meters of streets, squares, bridges, flower beds and fountains, allows everyone to enjoy pleasant moments. The Botanical Garden, however, can be many species of rare plants, aquatic alien and Sicilian origin. Thinking about the nature, the look and the thought that they can not run Etna, a mixed blessing for this city. Venturing on the craters of the most imposing volcano in Europe (3330 meters above sea level, 210 km in perimeter and area of ​​1600 km2) is a more unique setting. Sports enthusiasts can climb in hiking or mountain biking, while those who prefer relaxing trip can enjoy the sightseeing tour on board the train Circumetnea, through which you can reach the villages around the foot of the volcano as the medieval Randazzo and Lingfield, with the beautiful Etna Park, a green oasis of 58,000 hectares. But the excursion to Mount Etna can be 'profitable' also in terms of food and wine, becoming a journey to discover the specialties Catania to savor the numerous taverns here present: rice balls, pancakes with anchovies, pasta alla Norma, fish and wine.

Beach, entertainment and shopping

For young people there are opportunities for fun and entertainment both day and night: in fact, throughout Catania there are over 120 pubs. The Catania scene is in fact known throughout Italy and is developed mainly in the historical center, where you will have fun until dawn without even realizing it. The meeting point is the hottest Alessi Steps, which is overlooked by many locals. On the beach there is the famous Playa di Catania, you will find everything you need for entertainment by day and night restaurants, beaches and public beaches, nightclubs and two water parks. For a cultural evening and refined, the city offers as many as 25 theaters, and fine wine bar Corso Italy, downtown shopping and discos. About shopping, you can not help but buy one of the famous puppets from Catania made by artisan workshop of Naples, a family of puppeteers for excellence.



Provincia Regionale di Catania
Mimmo Rapisarsa


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Sito sviluppato dallo Studio di Ingegneria Zappalà