Catania Mini Guide
Catania is the second city of Sicily after the capital, Palermo
. It stands on the east coast, where the southern slopes of Mount Etna meet the sea.
The fiery volcano dominates the life of Catania, hanging over it like a rumbling giant. The city has been destroyed twice by earthquakes in 1169 and 1693 - and once inundated by lava, in 1669. It is a centre for the island's food and light-engineering industries.
The city, with its grid plan of about 1700, has many monuments of black lava. The Bellini Gardens, named after the opera composer Vincenzo Bellini, who was born in Catania in 1801, provided a retreat from the bustle and traffic. Ursino Castle, built by the holy Roman Emperor Frederick II in 1232 was reduced to a keep by the 1669 lava flow.
Catania overlooks the Ionian Sea and there are beautiful beaches and amazing monuments. Rhino Car Hire Catania is a good way to do island sightseeing tours.
For instance you are only a few minutes away from the base of Mount Etna, one of the largest active volcanoes in Europe. Car hire is also vital to see the volcano as there is no public transport operating on a Saturday. You can pick up your car from the island airports and use it to get to your holiday or hotel destinations.
Catania is close to both Palermo
and Catania Airport and so you can get there with a vehicle in no time at all. This is much quicker than taking the bus. Once you are downtown you might want to park up and walk as this is a good way to really see everything.
Look out for interesting sights such as the Elephant fountain. It is part of the baroque architecture of the Piazza del Duomo.
There’s much to be seen in and out of the city there. Catania has been a very important city over the millennia and remains are everywhere of its history. In the centre of the city you should visit the Piazza Stesicoro which is the original medieval heart of the modern city.
There, beautiful limestone and marble buildings glow in the Sicilian sun and many have been turned into stylish bars and cafes to tempt the thirsty visitor. Park your hire car close to the port and seek out the fish market, acknowledged to be one of the world’s finest.