Depart from Catania and passing from the motorway, you’ll begin your sightseeing tour along the Ionian Coast of Catania. You’ll arrive at Acireale Coastline with its citrus groves and the view of the summit of Mount Etna in the distance. It is called the “Riviera dei Ciclopi” (Riviera of the Cyclops) in memory of the Homeric myth. According to the legend, it was there that a Cyclops (one-eyed giant) named Polyphemus, out of jealousy for his beloved Galatea, killed a young man called Acis, who was then transformed by the compassionate gods into the river that still bears his name. You’ll pass through the Baroque village of Acireale and admire the wonderful Duomo, built in the 17th century and other baroque style churches. Coming back to Catania, you’ll pass above the Village of Acitrezza (coaches are not permitted inside the village) and through Aci Castello where it’s possible to stop for a photo at the Norman Castle erected in 1076 and built entirely of black lava.
Before returning to the pier, you’ll stop in town where the guide will lead you through the Catania streets lined with ancient buildings of historical importance and churches belonging to different periods. Highlights will include the Roman Amphitheatre, the Collegiata Church (the former Royal Chapel), the University Palace, and the Cathedral. You will then have free time for browsing, shopping or enjoying a refreshment at one of the picturesque local cafés.
Note: The first portion of the tour is conducted mainly on the coach with little walking required. The stop in Catania involves approximately 2 miles of walking over cobblestone and paved sidewalks with some inclines and steps. The final walking distance is dependent upon where the coach is allowed to stop in town. Walking during free time is at guests’ discretion. There are no interior visits of the listed attractions. Extremely dense/heavy traffic congestion may impact the tour’s final duration. Some photo stops are included during the sightseeing portion of tour. The order of sights visited may vary and change according to available order. Please do not wear expensive jewelry and pay attention to your belongings when in town. Comfortable walking shoes, hat, sunglasses and sunscreen are recommended.