Likes & Dislikes


Catania - Piazza Duomo - s.k. photo

,,You could call Catania pretty much everything, but tidy it is not. The road from the train station to the city center can be downright shocking after an idyllic drive through the mountains, but anyone who has already navigated the maze that is Naples, and perhaps even fallen in love with the wild romance of Southern Italy, will soon begin to relax those tense, hunched shoulders.

Mount Etna keeps popping up on the horizon here, always smoking nicely – just like the locals, whether a twelve-year-old kid at the fish market or the eighty-year-old grandfather who examines the fresh tuna with a cigarette dangling from the corner of his mouth. I can’t emphasize enough how cool it is that these people live right under an active volcano. It gives a certain weight to every day, knowing it might just blow its top, and aesthetically makes Catania a sort of Mediterranean Salzburg, though there’s no risk here of the police taking you away if you spit in the street.

Catania has a bad reputation, but it’s worth at least giving it a chance – though I still wouldn’t necessarily recommend it as a honeymoon destination. It’s a good spot for street photographers, though, since you’ll find a beautiful church or at least a shrine on every street corner, and every face begs to be immortalized. Sunrises, meanwhile, are as orange as the fruit ripening in the city parks.” (2017)


The city is dominated by a great deal of the hustle and bustle and is full of shops, restaurants, and bars, so whatever you want, you can find it. Traffic, like almost everything else, is chaotic. But this is not surprising for Italy, and while it was sometimes infuriating at the beginning, by the end of the five months, I was more inclined as a foreigner to find it amusing.

The bus service is excellent and frequent, although the timetable is more or less imaginary. Buses come when they feel like it, or at least that's the impression I get.


From the descriptions I read before the trip, it was clear that this would be quite a dirty city – something that went for the whole of Sicily in general – and that walking around at night would not be advisable. There was nothing for it; we had to walk from the bus station to our accommodation. However, it is not dangerous at all and seemed like a completely normal provincial Italian (or, in general, European) city after dark. (Though, I don't know the headquarters of the famous-famous Sicilian mafia; maybe we were just lucky we didn't wander there at night 😃.) Anyway, I wouldn't even call it excessively dirty (countless places worldwide are much more polluted than this). (l.v., 2023)




Catania - Park&Ride - a.p. photo

Catania - public bus seen from a tourist sightseeing bus - k.i. photo



Catania - sandwich - a.p. photo



Catania - Historic center - open-air fish market, La Pescheria - ata photo

Catania - flea market - f.p. photo

Catania - wine shop - f.p. photo



Catania - h.a. photo


Catania - ata photo

Destination in brief

Population (in 2020): 586,000

Average net monthly salary (in 2020): 1200 Euro



Catania - small square - a.s. photo

Catania - procession - f.p. photo



Catania - The church of Santa Lucia alla Badia - Sicilian-baroque - h.a. photo

Roman Theater

Catania - Teatro Romano - f.p. photo

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