Catania

three thousand years of history

Catania, Sicilian town and capital of the homonymous province is one of the main commercial, industrial and beach centers of the island. In a strategic position, right at slopes of Etna, the city of Catania encompasses a mysterious beauty, the result of the passage of different dominations and constant intervention of the great volcano. An ancient guide of United States wrote about the city of Catania in the 50s: "The main wonder of this city is the fact that it still exists". Catania has indeed been destroyed and has been rebuilt in the same position for nine times. And that's why the real symbol of the city is not so much the elephant (also called liotru from the name of the cultured "magician" catania Eliodoro), located in Piazza Duomo, but the phoenix - the mythical bird that is reborn from the ashes - and that is carved in the eighteenth-century arch of Porta Ferdinanda (today Porta Garibaldi), and where it remains imprinted the motto "Melior de cinere surgo" ("Risorgo always more beautiful from my ashes"). But the city of Catania still retains marvelous and numerous beautiful artistic historians that embellish and make it unique in the world. To visit surely the Cathedral dedicated to Sant'Agata, patron of the city and whose festivities recall faithful and curious from every part of the world, the Monastero dei Benedettini, the Ursino Castle, the Greco-Roman Amphitheater, the Bellini Theater, the Elephant Fountain and the Town Hall. And Catania is also appreciated for the sea and the golden beaches. The Lido Plaja, known for its fine sand, is the main beach of the "Catanesi", easily reachable from the highway towards the Fontana Rossa airport. Also not to be missed is the beautiful beach of black rocks (strictly lava) of Aci Castello and Aci Trezza, the only coast in front of the island of the Ciclopi, where you can spend moments of relaxation and fun among the numerous bathing establishments in the area.

Duomo di Catania

Duomo di Catania (Source: Leandro Neumann Ciuffo - CC BY 2.0)

How to reach Catania

By car

The city of Catania is reachable from the province of Palermo along the motorway A19 (Catania-Palermo) without toll: distance of about 200 km; from the province of Messina the city of Catania can be reached via the motorway A18 (with toll): about 100km away. Please note that the historical center of the city of Catania is in the restricted traffic area (ZTL): the access gates are guarded by cameras active 24/7. It is therefore advisable to park outside the city center, in one of the free parking lots allowed and then continue on foot.

Porta Garibaldi - Catania

Porta Garibaldi - Catania (Source: Gerry Labrijn - CC BY SA 2.0)

By plane

The city of Catania is served by the international airport "Vincenzo Bellini" which is about 10 km from the city center. From the Bravodriver.com it is possible to book the rental service with driver (NCC) that will take you directly from the airport "arrivals" terminal at the address you want: on our portal you will find the best drivers in the area. Alternatively, from the Catania airport you can reach the city center with the service of shuttle bus offered by the company Amt-Alibus or by TAXI.

By train or bus

All long-distance trains, departing from Milan or Rome, arrive at the central station of Catania (Piazza Giovanni Paolo XXIII). The train is a convenient solution because the station is located right in the city center and from which the main urban arteries come together as Via Etnea. To find timetables, seasonal promotions and races every day it is advisable to visit the site of the rail transport service Trenitalia.

By ship or ferry

The city of Catania has an efficient commercial and tourist port that extends over the homonymous Gulf. In fact, in the port of Catania, ships arrive every day and ferries from different national and international locations. The central position and the excellent rail and motorway links have in fact transformed the port of Catania into a of the main reference airports for tourist traffic in the direction of Sicily. The main route connects Catania to the city of Naples and is served by the company TTTLines, Charon, Grandi Navi Veloci, Grimaldi, Tirrenia, SNAV. Provided daily connections that reach the city of Naples in about 15 hours. Direct connections also with the port of Malta (company that makes the Virty Ferrys service).

How to move to Catania

On foot

On foot, it is definitely the best choice for tourists who want to discover the historical center full of monuments without having to search for parking and avoiding infractions to the highway code for transit within the restricted traffic area. Furthermore, in recent years, public services have been strengthened and made much more efficient. they serve the city of Catania. The company bus lines AMT reach all areas of the city and peripheral areas such as Cibali district and Mascalucia. Among the main routes, the line D that starts from Piazza Borsellino and connects the center of Catania with the Playa beach and the line 935 that from Via Etnea (main road artery of Catania) allows to reach the promenade and the north coast (cliff). An ordinary ticket, which can be purchased in bars and tobacconists, costs € 1 and is valid for 90 minutes from the time of validation. For more information on routes and times, it is advisable to visit the company.

By subway

The Catania underground consists of a single railway line, with a total length of 3.8 km. There are six stops along the subway line: Borgo, Giuffrida, Italy, Galatea, Stazione, Porto. The service is managed by the FCE, Ferrovia Circumetnea. It is possible to buy the titles of travel at tobacconists, kiosks or Amt kiosks in the city of Catania.

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