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Piazza Armerina

Piazza Armerina is the most prominent city of the Enna province. It is located considerably far from the coast, that’s why here mainly come people who appreciate the continental Sicily which is rich in rural landscapes and monuments of the past. The landscapes are the special pride of Piazza Armenina. The city is located 700 m above the sea level and it is famous for its panoramic views of the island.

The tourists often stay in one of Piazza Armenina hotels. They come here just to see its main sight: the well-preserved Villa Romana del Casale built in the 4th century B.C. Villa del Casale was found not so long ago – in the middle of 1930’s when the archeologists found this almost fully preserved majestic construction under several layers of the Sicilian soil. In spite of centuries-old conservation, Villa del Casale preserved a greater part of the luxury of the lords of the world enjoyed that time. Colonnades, thermae, portals and the main ornament – mosaics depicting the scenes of hunting, battles and myth stories. The whole mosaic area is about 3,000 m2. Not so long ago UNESCO announced Villa del Casale as the World Heritage Site.

Of course, Villa del Casale is not the only attraction in Piazza Armenina. There are many Renaissance buildings in the old city among which the city Cathedral stands out. Its dome can be called the symbolic “roof” of the city, as the cathedral is the highest of all city constructions. When looking at Piazza Armenina from afar, you will have the feeling as if you climb up a hill and try to find yourself as close to the Cathedral as possible – so densely they adjoin each other.

But there are also other places of interest in Piazza Armenina except for the Cathedral. A powerful fortress (Castle Spinelli) built in the 14th century have been preserved since the Spanish reign. And, of course, many baroque churches have also survived to this day: the church of San Giovanni Evangelista and Church of Fundro with their marvelous frescos.

The Sicilian cuisine should also be mentioned. Piazza Armenina is the centre of the Sicilian cuisine. In the local restaurants you will discover all the ancient traditions of the Sicilian cooks. The majority of the city restaurants are located on the way to the Villa del Casale. The best restaurant of Piazza Armenina is the one located in the Agriturismo Gigliotto Hotel, which is situated at a stone’s throw from the villa. The cooks working here make dishes only from the local natural ingredients. The average price of a dinner for two persons there will cost you €15. Remember that many restaurants accept only cash. No credit cards – it is some kind of a tradition, too.

Piazza Armenina is located in the very centre of Sicily. That’s why it will take you the same time to get there both from Palermo and from Catania – the cities where the main airports of Sicily are located. It will take you only an hour and a half to get to Piazza Armenina from Palermo if you go down the A19 highway before turning to Enna by car. If you go there from Catania by the same highway before you turn to Mulinello, it will take you about an hour.

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