Fodor's Expert Review Centro Storico

Catania Free

Black lava stone from Etna, combined with largely Baroque architecture, give Catania's historic center a very distinctive feel. After Catania's destruction by lava and earthquake at the end of the 17th century, the city was rebuilt and its informal mascot "U Liotru" (an elephant carved out of lava balancing an Egyptian obelisk) was placed outside the cathedral as a kind of talisman. This square also marks the entrance to Catania's famous pescheria (fish market) and is one of the few points in the city where you can see the Amenano River above ground. Another point of interest is Via Garibaldi, which runs from Piazza del Duomo up toward the impressively huge Porta Garibaldi, a black-and-white triumphal arch built in 1768 to commemorate the marriage of Ferdinando I. Also of note in the center are Castello Ursino, which is now a museum, the Greco-Roman theater off Via Vittorio Emanuele II, and the Roman amphitheater in Piazza Stesicoro.

Free Historic District

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Catania, Sicily  Italy

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