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Caltagirone: what to see, where to eat and what to do in the evening


Caltagirone is located on three different hills, this gives it a splendid view over the entire valley below. It became famous for its ceramics, the city is developing a strong tourist vocation, managing to attract several hundred visitors during the year. At the base of great success, there are the folcrore of the patronal feast of San Giacomo, the Baroque heritage of UNESCO, the famous staircase, the cribs and many other historical and cultural attractions, which make Caltagirone one of the unmissable destinations of the Sicilian hinterland. Here's what you need to know to make the most of this small town.



Index

  1. 10 things to see in Caltagirone in a weekend
  2. What to see in Caltagirone in one day: recommended itinerary
  3. Where to eat in Caltagirone: the best restaurants
  4. What to do in the evening: the nightlife areas and the best clubs in Caltagirone
  5. Plan your stay in Caltagirone: info and useful tips
  6. User questions and comments

10 things to see in Caltagirone in a weekend

1 - Museum of ceramics

They are collected inside the Caltagirone Ceramics Museum about 2.500 finds of pottery made in Sicily starting from the fourth millennium BC. up to the contemporary age. Second only to the Museum of Faenza, the complex can be defined as "a museum within a museum" as the exhibition is housed in an Art Nouveau building from the 50s, with two imposing staircases of enormous charm at the entrance.

  • the museum is 2km from the historic center, about nine minutes on foot, passing through via Roma - Get directions
  • Every day 9: 00-18: 30. Sundays and holidays from 10:00 to 18:30
  • € 4,00 full ticket, € 2,00 reduced ticket, € 1,00 ticket for residents of the province

2 - Staircase of Santa Maria del Monte

Built in 1606, the Staircase of Santa Maria del Monte connects the old part of Caltagirone to the new one, built in the upper part. The stairway, over 130 meters long, was originally built in overhangs.
In 1844 the various ramps were unified, thus giving life to the one hundred and forty-two steps decorated with ceramic tiles.



  • the staircase is located in the historic center, therefore it is easily reachable on foot, along Corso Amedeo di Savoia - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • Free

3 - Villa Comunale and public garden

The municipal villa can be accessed both from Via Roma, where the main entrance is located next to the Politeama Theater, and from Viale Princess Maria José. The garden is built on the model of English parks, and is characterized by the liberty style entrance, and by a long internal avenue, where you can admire terracotta vases, majolica and ornamental terracotta. In the central square there is a musical stage in Moorish style, while in the lower part you can admire one of the tanks of the Fountain of Flora by the Florentine sculptor and architect Camillo Camilliani.
From the entrance of Viale Princess Maria José, on the other hand, you go down a double staircase that leads to two majolica panels and a statue of Ceres.
In the boundaries of the villa there is also the former municipal library, in Art Nouveau style, now the seat of the International Nativity Museum.

  • it is 1,2 km from the center, which can be covered in 13 minutes on foot, moving south on via Duomo - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • Free

4 - Cathedral of San Giuliano

The church of San Giuliano dates back to the Norman period, and is one of the best preserved examples, although it has undergone numerous alterations over the centuries, due to damage due to earthquakes.
The interior consists of three naves, separated by a colonnade, with arches embellished with splendid frescoes. On 12 September 1816 Pope Pius VII, through the papal bull Romanus Pontifex, gave life to the diocese of Caltagirone and raised the church of San Giuliano to a cathedral.



  • it is located in the heart of the historic center, and it is therefore recommended to reach it on foot - Get directions
  • every day from 9: 00 to 18: 00
  • Free

5 - Monumental cemetery

The Caltagirone cemetery was built in the second half of the 1800s, and is called the Paradise cemetery, from the name of the district in which it stands. Seen the large number of sculptures, paintings, friezes and other antiquities contained therein, it was declared a national monument in 1931.
Along the north-south axis there are the most important elements, including the entrance portico, the Famedio, the Ossuary and the octagonal square.

  • from the city center the cemetery is 2,8 km away, which can be covered in 34 minutes on a pleasant walk, which will touch some of the most important attractions such as the Villa Comunale, and the ceramic museum - Get directions
  • 7: 00-18: 30 from Monday to Friday. On public holidays the closing is anticipated to 13:00
  • Free

6 - Church of Maria SS. del Monte

It stands in the oldest part of the city, and has been damaged and rebuilt several times. Located at the top of the staircase of the same name, it has the vault of the nave decorated with frescoes depicting biblical heroines.
It also houses the Sacred Image of the Madonna di Conadomini, dear to the citizens, who express their devotion in the month of May entirely dedicated to the cult of Mary. It is a panel that arrived in Caltagirone in the first half of 1200, painted on both sides.


  • it is located in the historic center, at the top of the homonymous staircase. It's an easy walk - Get directions
  • always accessible

7 - Luigi Sturzo Civic Museums

The Luigi Sturzo civic museums are a museum chain, housed in a prison built during the Bourbon Kingdom. The building has decorations on the facade, articulated by a giant order of Ionic pilasters, which support a large protruding cornice: in the center of the façade there is a large city coat of arms.
Inside there are, on the ground floor, the large rooms for common prisoners, still with chains and railings; on the first floor there were the chapel, warehouses and deposits, while on the second floor the officers and guards' quarters. In the attic the isolation cells.
Such premises today they house the archaeological section, the picture gallery and the history collection respectively. The various collections illustrate the history and aspects of the Caltagirone community and territory.


  • located in the historic center, it is recommended to go there on foot, given the presence of other attractions along the way - Get directions
  • Tuesday, Friday, Saturday from 9:30 to 13:30 and from 15:30 to 18:30; Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday from 9:30 to 13:30
  • Free

8 - Church of San Francesco di Paola

Built in 1593, the Church has undergone several changes, including structural ones, which have now compromised its original appearance. At the same time, however, inside it have been preserved numerous paintings and sacred furnishings from other churches, collapsed due to earthquakes or closed.
The parish church is strongly linked to the devotional cult of the people towards the hermit saint, which is expressed during the traditional procession of "the virgineddi", a procession consisting of thirteen children holding a candle.

  • given the proximity of the church to the theater, the statue of Luigi Sturzo and other attractions, it is recommended to go there on foot. From the city center it is 550 meters away, for about 6 minutes - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • Free

9 - The Tondo Vecchio

Built in the second half of the eighteenth century as a decorative element of the new road layout, the Tondo Vecchio is located near the Church of San Francesco di Paola, and it is a belvedere that overlooks a magnificent panorama made up of mountains and valleys.

  • given the proximity of the church to the theater, the statue of Luigi Sturzo and other attractions, it is recommended to go there on foot. From the city center it is 550 meters away, for about 6 minutes - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • Free

10 - Piazza Umberto I and its buildings

On Piazza Umberto I there are beautiful and important civil buildings, which are worth seeing even from the outside. The first of these is the Monte delle Prestanze, now the seat of the Banco di Sicilia, characterized by slender columns that decorate the lower floor; the Crescimanno d'Albafiorita Palace, sumptuous eighteenth-century residence rich in works of art; the Palazzo Libertini di San Marco, an ancient bishopric, now used as the management of civic museums.

  • Piazza Umberto I is part of the historic center of the city, and it is therefore recommended to reach it on foot. alternatively the square can be reached using the city bus lines 14, 7, 5, 13 - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • Free

What to see in Caltagirone in one day: recommended itinerary

Morning: after having breakfast at the Forte bar, it is good to move towards the first stop of the itinerary: the Ceramics Museum of Caltagirone, which certainly cannot be missed, given that we are right in the city of ceramics.
The second stop is the beautiful and imposing church of San Pietro, with its particular Gothic style which gives it a certain "mysterious charm".
At the end of the visit, the time has come to move towards another church, the one dedicated to San Francesco di Paola, the guardian of numerous treasures from other churches that have been destroyed or damaged by earthquakes. Near the church there is the famous "Tondo Vecchio": a panoramic point overlooking an expanse of mountains and valleys.

Afternoon: lunch time has now come, and we recommend a stop at the nearby Tondo Vecchio restaurant, to eat at an affordable price.
The time has come to get back on the road, and the Ponte di San Francesco is the next stop on the program. Completed in 1665, in order to connect two of the three hills on which the city stands, the bridge is finely decorated with relief ceramics and has 5 majestic arches. After crossing the bridge, proceeding straight on via Roma, you will soon arrive at the very central Piazza Umberto I, overlooked by Monte delle Prestanze, Palazzo Crescimanno d'Albafiorita, Palazzo Libertini di San Marco. With just one day at your disposal you certainly cannot visit all the beauties that Caltagirone has to offer and you have to make choices but, a visit to the square allows the tourist to see all these architectural masterpieces together, albeit quickly and only from the external.
And here we are now at the last two stages of the visit, but the pride of the city: the stairway of Santa Maria del Monte and the homonymous church. Built in 1606, the Staircase of Santa Maria del Monte connects the old part of the city to the new one, located on the top. The staircase is over 130 meters long, for a total of one hundred and forty-two steps decorated with ceramic tiles. Dominating the work is the church of Santa Maria del Monte, particularly dear to the citizens and guardian of a rare sacred image.

Sera: and here we are at dinner time, and we advise you to end the day with a stop at the Anima e Core restaurant, so that you can taste some good typical dishes before saying goodbye to the city.

One day itinerary at a glance

  1. Breakfast at Bar Forte via Roma, 103 - Get directions
  2. Museum of Ceramics: from Monday to Friday from 9:00 to 18:30 - Sunday and holidays from 10:00 to 18:30 - ticket price: full € 4,00 reduced € 2,00
  3. Church of St. Peter: always open, free admission
  4. Church of San Francesco di Padova and the Tondo Vecchio: always open, free admission
  5. Lunch at the Tondo Vecchio restaurant, Via Rampe Tondo Vecchio, 2 - Get directions
  6. Bridge of San Francesco: always open, free admission
  7. Piazza Umberto I: always open, free admission
  8. Staircase of Santa Maria del Monte and the Sanctuary of Santa Maria del Monte: always open, free admission
  9. Price at Trattoria Anima e Core, Piazza Innocenzo Marcinno, 15 - Get directions

Where to eat in Caltagirone: the best restaurants

  1. Tondo Vecchio restaurant: the structure, consisting of three internal rooms and an external hall, is located in the historic center of the city. The restaurant offers both a wide choice of typical traditional cuisine and a variety of pizzas cooked in a wood oven.
    Average price per person: choice of tourist menus at fixed meat / fish prices € 15,00
    Address and contacts: Via Rampe Tondo Vecchio, 2 (Get directions) / tel: 0933 58661
  2. Al Saracino restaurant: the structure, divided into several rooms, is located in the historic center of the city and is designed in "liberty" style. The restaurant offers a wide choice of typical traditional cuisine and gourmet courses, all accompanied by a wide choice of wines.
    Average price per person: € 20,00
    Address and contacts: via Roma, 84 (Get directions) / tel: 338 344 4419
  3. Trattoria Anima e Core: typical Sicilian cuisine, with particular attention to meat and fish dishes at km 0.
    Average price per person: € 15,00 - € 30,00
    Address and contacts: Piazza Innocenzo Marcinno, 15 (Get directions) / tel: 0933 030578

What to do in the evening: the nightlife areas and the best clubs in Caltagirone

Certainly there is no shortage of bars and pubs in Caltagirone, which has a wide choice of clubs (also open until late) concentrated almost everywhere in its territory. Lovers of beer and drinks are spoiled for choice. The same goes for lovers of nights spent in the disco, who will have to move to Catania, to find the places that best correspond to their needs.

The best pubs, clubs and discos

  • Shamrock Pub: sandwich shop and pizzeria, it also provides its customers with a series of board games, with which to have fun
    Address: Via San Bonaventura, 6 (Get directions) / Facebook page
  • Atlantic City: lounge bar, specializing in drinks and aperitifs
    Address: via Luigi Pirandello, 7 (Get directions) / Facebook page
  • Industrie Disco: cult disco, meeting place for lovers of dance / house music also coming from nearby cities
    Address: Via Acquicella Porto, 13 - 95121 Catania CT (Get directions)

Plan your stay in Caltagirone: info and useful tips

  • by car A19 Catania-Palermo motorway; Enna exit towards Piazza Armerina. The nearest airport is Comiso (45 km - Get directions), but the main airport is Catania - Fontanarossa (65 km - Get directions). From here you can get to Caltagirone with the Interbus buses in about an hour at a cost of about € 6,40.
  • Getting around: Caltagirone is a small town, and all the main monuments are located within a short distance from each other. It is therefore advisable to move on foot. However, a city bus service is available at a cost of € 1,50 each way.
  • Where to park: near the Villa Comunale, you can take advantage of a large free parking (Get directions). Near the center instead, in via Porta del Vento, the Altea car park also gives the possibility to park the camper (Get directions)
  • Hotel and b & b starting from € 37,00 per room -
  • What to see in the surroundings: Catania (68 km, about 1 hour by car - Get directions), Ragusa (59 km, 57 minutes - Get directions), Piazza Armerina (28,4 km, 44 minutes - Get directions), Enna (40 km, 1 now - Get directions).
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