A day in Aci Trezza and Aci Castello: from Cyclops Islands to Norman Castle

Acicastello and Aci Trezza (or Acitrezza) are two picturesque fishing villages located approximately 1 km apart, in the immediate vicinity of Catania.

In addition to their famous faraglioni and Norman castle, Acicastello and Aci Trezza have a wealth of other attractions to offer. Immerse yourself in the stunning vistas and indulge in delectable fresh seafood dishes. Make the most of your remaining time by visiting the Church of San Giovanni and taking a leisurely stroll along the waterfront, where you can marvel at the unique formation of the Columnar Basalts. Don’t miss the opportunity to explore Casa del Nespolo, a charming museum housed within a traditional Sicilian dwelling, where you can delve into the captivating story of “I Malavoglia

Aci Trezza and the Faraglioni

Aci Trezza is a charming seaside village located in the province of Catania. Founded in the 6th century, it sits on the shores of the Ionian Sea, overlooking the picturesque archipelago known as the Cyclops Islands.

Mighty cliffs of lava rock rise from the sea just a few meters from the shore, forming the archipelago of the Cyclops Islands. These islands, also referred to as the Faraglioni, have deep mythical roots, with legends tracing back to the Cyclops Polyphemus.

According to the ancient tale described in the ninth book of Homer’s Odyssey, the story unfolds with the brutal acts of Polyphemus, who used Odysseus’ companions as his prey. The clever Odysseus, imprisoned by the one-eyed giant, managed to escape along with his surviving comrades. By blinding Polyphemus and cleverly identifying himself as “Nobody,” Odysseus clung to the underbellies of the giant’s sheep to ensure their safe passage. Enraged by this deception, Polyphemus hurled massive rocks from the volcano’s peak into the sea, aiming to sink the vessel carrying Odysseus and his men. As the legend goes, these rocks became embedded in the seabed, giving rise to the renowned Faraglioni that continue to captivate tourists today.

The Cyclops Islands, now part of a protected marine area, consist of Isola Lachea (Lachea Island), Faraglione Grande (Big Faraglione), Faraglione Piccolo (Small Faraglione), and several other rocks forming an arc.

One of the most enjoyable ways to experience the beauty of the faraglioni and the marine reserve is by taking a boat tour guided by experienced sailors. You can easily book the tours directly near the coast of Aci Trezza.

Norman Castle of Aci Castello

The Norman Castle of Aci Castello is a prominent attraction located just over 2 km from Aci Trezza, a charming seaside village situated 15 meters above sea level. The castle, perched on a rocky promontory of volcanic origin, offers stunning views of the sea. Inside, visitors can explore a small civic museum showcasing archaeological exhibits and historical artifacts, while outside, there is a beautiful botanical garden to enjoy. Access to the castle is granted through a masonry staircase leading from the nearby square.

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