Caltanissetta is a city in the Sicilian hinterland, a little valued gem that actually has a long history. You can discover its value through its churches, its castle and its museums and we are sure you will be fascinated! Below you will find lots of useful information and tips to visit Caltanissetta in a single day or in a whole weekend to know what to see, where to eat and what to do in the evening!
- 10 things to see in Caltanissetta in a weekend
- What to see in Caltanissetta in one day: recommended itinerary
- Where to eat in Caltanissetta: the best restaurants
- What to do in the evening: the nightlife areas and the best clubs in Caltanissetta
- Plan your stay in Caltanissetta: info and useful tips
- User questions and comments
10 things to see in Caltanissetta in a weekend
1 - Church of Santa Maria La Nova
Il Cathedral of Santa Maria La Nova (or Cathedral of Santa Maria La Nova) is the main place of worship in the city of Caltanissetta, built starting from 1560 and open to the public from 1622. The rather curious name was chosen to distinguish the building from the pre-existing church of Santa Maria near the Castle of Pietrarossa and dating back to the fourteenth century: the latter was in fact nicknamed the Church of Santa Maria La Vetere. Outside, the building has a large facade flanked by two bell towers and an imposing dome; the interior instead is a Latin cross with three naves (one central and two side) and about 14 arches, each dedicated to a character present in the Old Testament. Among the most valuable works preserved there, we point out the altarpiece by the Flemish Borremans entitled to the Immaculate Conception and the Saints, but also a finely decorated organ and a canvas depicting the Madonna del Carmelo made by Paladini.
- it is located in the historic center and can be easily reached on foot in a few minutes - Get directions
- every day, from 8:00 to 20:00. Festive masses are held at 8:00 - 9:15 - 10:30 - 12:00 - 18:00
2 - Church of Sant'Agata al Collegio and Corso Umberto I
Even if it is not the main church of Caltanissetta, the Church of Sant'Agata al Collegio it is considered the most beautiful and artistic in the city. It is located in the very central Corso Umberto and dates back to the 600s, when Prince Francesco and his mother Luisa Moncada invited the Jesuit order to Caltanissetta for which they built this beautiful structure with a red facade and luxurious and artistic interiors, already at the time dedicated to Sant'Agata but immediately used as a college as well as a church. The large courtyard that housed the college is now the seat of the municipal library and of the higher institute of musical studies.
- is located in the historic center, a few meters from the previous church from which it can be reached in just 3 minutes on foot - Get directions
- always open
3 - Tripisciano Museum
The Tripisciano Museum is a permanent exhibition of works by the Sicilian sculptor Michele Tripisciano, born and lived in Caltanissetta. The museum was set up by the Pro Loco in the historic th century Palazzo Moncada. Inside there are four rooms, each of which houses sculptures and drafts. In the Sala del Belli there are the sketches for the marble statue of Belli in Rome, in the Sala dell'Angelo a large plaster of the Angel with the cross and other minor religious works are exhibited, in the Sala dell'Orfeo there is marble Orpheus raised on a pedestal and finally in the Sala degli Oratori there are imposing plaster casts of Paul and Hortensio whose marble statues are found in Rome in the Palazzo della Giustizia.
- it is located in the heart of the historic center, very close to other attractions and reachable in a few minutes on foot - Get directions
- open Tuesday to Saturday from 9:30 to 13:00 and from 17:00 to 20:00
4 - Pietrarossa Castle
Pietrarossa Castle is considered the symbol of Caltanissetta, as it is theoldest building in the city, dating back to the distant Middle Ages. The castle is located near the old Arab quarter and the view it offers from above is spectacular as it includes the city, the entire valley and the Salso river. This structure underwent various events over the years, but its most important role was certainly that of the seat of the three General Parliaments of Sicily. Finally, the castle passed to the Moncada family and from that moment its period of decline began as it was used only for military functions, until it was deemed unsuitable as a noble residence.
- it is located near the Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli and the Monumental City Cemetery. To reach it, although the road is slightly uphill, we advise you to opt for a walk from the town, it takes 10 minutes, taking first via San Domenico and then Via degli Angeli; from the station the road is a bit longer, in fact it takes about twenty minutes following via degli Angeli - Get directions
- open from Tuesday to Friday from 13pm to 00pm
5 - Mineralogical Museum
Famous in the past for the extraction of sulfur and other minerals in great demand on the market, Caltanissetta also has its own Mineralogical Museum, whose collection comes from the private laboratory of the engineer Sebastiano Mottura. The museum is divided into different rooms, including a part dedicated to sulfur extraction techniques, a part dedicated to the fossil collection, one to the mineral collection and finally a special area in which the rarest and most beautiful samples are exhibited. In total, there are about 2.500 minerals and 1.500 fossil finds belonging to the most diverse geological eras: if you are passionate about the sector, or if you are simply curious about this aspect of the history of Caltanissetta, this museum is just what you are looking for.
- it is not part of the central area of Caltanissetta but on the outskirts, but can be reached in 25 minutes on foot or 10 minutes by car - Get directions
- Monday to Saturday from 09.00 to 13.00
6 - Monument to the Redeemer
The Monument to the Redeemer is a large bronze statue supported by a stone base entirely built with gray limestone from a nearby quarry. It is located on the summit of Monte San Giuliano, 727 meters high, and from here the view extends over the whole city. The statue was built in 1900 to represent Christ the Redeemer inspired by the marble group present on the facade of the Basilica of San Giovanni in Laterano, in Rome, but the monument turns its back on Caltanissetta, a detail that over the years has given rise to legends and beliefs popular. All around there is the viewpoint over the whole city.
- it can be a bit tiring to reach on foot, especially given the distance from the historic center. For this reason, we suggest you use your car, which will allow you to reach your destination in ten minutes along via San Giuliano. Not far away, a paid parking lot will allow you to park your car -Get directions
- always open
7 - Badia Abbey of Santo Spirito
Another very famous religious building in Caltanissetta is theAbbey of the Holy Spirit, whose construction was commissioned by the Grand Count Ruggero (or Ruggero I of Sicily) at the beginning of 1000. Entrusted to the Augustinian friars, the abbey has a rather evident symbolism on the outside: the façade (a single three-apsidal nave) is characterized by three small apse windows with the axes converging in a single focus placed in the center. Inside, the beautiful Norman baptismal font stands out in particular; the Crucifix of the Staglio, made in tempera on wood (probably the most precious work present here); but also thefresco of Christ Pantocrator, in reference to the typical Byzantine art.
- in the peripheral area of Caltanissetta but reachable in just 5 minutes by car from any other point of the city. The Abbey has its own parking - Get directions
- every day, from 9:00 to 18:00 in winter time; from 9:00 to 19:00 in summer time.
8 - Carusi Cemetery
The Carusi Cemetery is a kind of memorial for the death of 19 boys, carusi in Sicilian, victims of an accident at work in the Gessolungo solfara. This sulfur mine was one of the largest sulfur mines in the area, it belonged to Baron Calafato and was closed after this tragic accident of 1881. It was right where the cemetery was built today, a place that can be visited by groups of schoolchildren or simple families. to remember one of the greatest tragedies in the mining environment.
- it is located from Caltanissetta but can be easily reached in 10 minutes by car from anywhere in the city - Get directions
- always open
9 - Regional Archaeological Museum
The Regional Archaeological Museum exhibits a collection of 5000 archaeological finds, especially in bronze and ceramic, all from settlements and archaeological sites in the area. Some pieces from the collection they even date back to prehistoric times up to the days of the ancient age. Most of the findings come from the Pietrarossa Castle and were brought to light only in the 50s. The museum is packed with statuettes of male and female divinities, vases, amphorae, jewels and tools of various kinds.
- it is located outside the historic center from which it is 30 minutes on foot and 10 by car - Get directions
- open every day from 9:00 to 13:00 and from 15:30 to 19:00
- Ticket cost: full € 4,00 - reduced € 2,00
10 - Natural Reserve of Mount Capodarso and Southern Imera Valley
The Eastern Nature Reserve of Monte Capodarso and the Southern Imera Valley is one of the largest protected areas in Sicily, established in 1999 and included in thelist of sites of community importance. Its territory includes a river environment, the gorges of Capodarso, the Grotta delle Meraviglie, an ancient staircase carved into the rock and the remains of an indigenous center. Inside there is no wood cover but areas with steppe vegetation, place of spring migration of some birds such as the gray heron, the pintail, the little egret, the marsh harrier and the moorhen. In the reserve there are also several mammals including wild cats, porcupines, hedgehogs, weasels, foxes and rabbits.
- it is located outside the city and can be reached in 15 minutes by car - Get directions
- open Monday to Friday from 9:00 to 13:00 and from 16:00 to 19:00
- € 5,00
What to see in Caltanissetta in one day: recommended itinerary
If your visit to Caltanissetta is reduced to a single day, then we want to offer you an itinerary formulated taking into consideration the times and position of the various attractions even if your tour may be a bit "lively" as you will often have to travel by car. Unfortunately, due to the short time available, the reduced opening hours of some sites and the distance from the historic center and between them, it will be necessary to give up some things among those listed above, for example we have excluded the Carusi Cemetery, the Reserve Natural Orientata Monte Capodarso and Southern Imera Valley and the Regional Archaeological Museum.
Morning: start your tour from the Mineralogical Museum, outside the historic center but open only in the morning, but before you treat yourself to a breakfast at Vancheri Store 93100 in the immediate vicinity. After visiting the museum, move by car around the historic center and quickly visit the Church of Sant'Agata al Colleggio and the Cathedral of Santa Maria La Nova and then concentrate on the Tripisciano Museum. Once out of the museum it will already be lunch time and from there you will find the 900 Restaurant a few steps away.
Afternoon: after lunch, walk to the Pietrarossa Castle in 5 minutes, being careful not to arrive too late as it is only open for two hours, then at the end of the visit of the castle move by car to the Santo Spirito Abbey and immediately get back on drive and head to the Redeemer Monument. After the tour, relax with a good dinner in the nearby restaurant La Luna Nel Pozzo.
One day itinerary at a glance
- Breakfast at Vancheri Store 93100 - Get directions
- Mineralogical Museum - opening hours: from Monday to Saturday from 9:00 to 13:00 - ticket price: free
- Church of Sant'Agata al Collegio - opening hours: always open - ticket price: free
- Cathedral of Santa Maria La Nova - opening hours: always open - ticket price: free
- Tripisciano Museum - opening hours: from Tuesday to Saturday from 9:30 to 13:00 and from 17:00 to 20:00 - ticket price: free
- Lunch at Ristorante 900 - Get directions
- Pietrarossa Castle - opening hours: Tuesday to Friday from 13:00 to 15:00 - ticket price: free
- Santo Spirito Abbey - opening hours: always open - ticket price: free
- Monument to the Redeemer - opening hours: always open - ticket price: free
- Dinner at La Luna Nel Pozzo - Get directions
Where to eat in Caltanissetta: the best restaurants
- 900 restaurant cuisine based on meat and fresh fish with typical recipes of the Sicilian tradition, also offers pizza and a remarkable choice of local wines
Average price per person: € 30,00
Address and contacts: via Medaglie D'Oro, 1 Get directions / tel: 093422734
- Aroma of Sicily pizza and Sicilian meat-based cuisine with homemade pasta dishes and quality ingredients
Average price per person: € 18,00
Address and contacts: via John F. Kennedy, 21 Get directions / tel: 09341901699
- The Moon In The Well pizzeria with wood oven cooking that offers the characteristic oval pizzas and lunettes, all seasoned with 0 km ingredients
Average price per person: € 15,00
Address and contacts: via Monte San Giuliano Get directions / tel: 0934 565710
What to do in the evening: the nightlife areas and the best clubs in Caltanissetta
For lovers of nightlife, Caltanissetta does not offer many alternatives. The evening / night spots in the city are mostly lounge bars and pubs where you can eat and sip an excellent cocktail or a different beer than usual in the company of live music or DJ sets. But don't be discouraged, because a disco is however present! It is located outside the city, just a 10-minute drive away, and is a great nightlife space for dancing and romping until dawn.
The best pubs, clubs and discos
- Malìa Lounge Bar: bar for long aperitifs, excellent cocktails and musical evenings
Address: Piazza Capuana Luigi, 2 - Get directions / Facebook page
- Artemisia: evening club, ideal for spending quiet evenings with a good drink
Address: Via F. Turati, 139 - Get directions / Facebook page
- D'vine Wine Bar: it is an excellent place to spend an evening sipping a cocktail and / or a glass of high quality wine. Loved by both young people and adults, it is always quite popular both during the week and on weekends.
Address: Via Canonico Francesco Pulci, 16 - Get directions
- Cafe Creme: absolute reference point for having a breakfast, but also an excellent aperitif in Caltanissetta. The restaurant is apparently sober, but very welcoming; in addition, trendy live music is often presented in the evening.
Address: Via Leone XIII, 101 / B - Get directions / Facebook page
- Pirate's Lair: ideal for craft beer lovers. A meeting place for many university students, the place is full of young people all weekend. Live music shows are offered every weekend.
Address: Viale Sicilia, 55L - Get directions / Facebook page
- Route 66 Sicily: excellent gastropub with a wide choice of dishes (mostly grilled meat) and craft beers. Recommended for a pleasant evening with friends, in a welcoming and very easy environment. Possibility to attend live music performances on weekends.
Address: Via Paladini, 232 - Get directions / Facebook page
- 58 study: cult nightclub in the area, very popular with young people and university students of the area ... but not only. Open every evening during the weekend, on Fridays and Saturdays it presents itself in a disco version, while on Sunday evenings it becomes a very popular dance hall among the "more mature" inhabitants of the city and surroundings.
Address: Pian del Lago - Get directions / Facebook page
Plan your stay in Caltanissetta: info and useful tips
- By car via the A19 motorway and the state roads 114 and 115 which connect it to Catania, Palermo, Syracuse and Agrigento. By train with several departures from Palermo, Gela, Agrigento and Enna with a travel time between 55 minutes and 2 and a half hours, depending on the departure station. By bus from the main cities, therefore Palermo and Catania, taking a couple of hours and finally by plane arriving at the airports of Catania, Palermo and Trapani from which you must then move with a transfer being respectively 110, 131 and 230 kilometers away.
- Getting around: the historic center of Caltanissetta can be visited by walking but, as we have seen, some attractions are located outside and quite far away, so it would be preferable to move by car to speed up times.
- Where to park: very close to the historic center there is the H24 Parking (Get directions), for a fee but with cheap prices, otherwise in Viale Regina Margherita there are several free parking spaces 10 minutes away on foot from the center (Get directions), finally there is Free Parking in Via Marchese Concepts, free and near the Mineralogical Museum (Get directions).
- Hotel and b & b starting from € 35,00 per room -
- What to see in the surroundings: the surroundings of Caltanissetta are also very interesting to visit, for example we point out Enna at 40 minutes by car, the small and characteristic village Mazzarino at 45 minutes by car, and finally Riesi with its sulfur mines always 45 minutes away . For the little ones, the Euro Park Roccela near San Cataldo is available, 26 minutes by car.