Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. It is an autonomous region of Italy, in Southern Italy along with surrounding minor islands. 
The earliest archaeological evidence of human activity on the island dates from as early as 12,000 BC. By around 750 BC, Sicily had three Phoenician and a dozen Greek colonies and, for the next 600 years, it was the site of the Sicilian Wars and the Punic Wars. After the fall of the Roman Empire in the 5th century AD, Sicily was ruled during the Early Middle Ages by the Vandals, the Ostrogoths, the Byzantine Empire. The Norman conquest of southern Italy led to the creation of the Kingdom of Sicily. It was later unified under the House of Bourbon with the Kingdom of Naples as the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies. It became part of Italy in 1860 following the Expedition of the Thousand, a revolt led by Giuseppe Garibaldi during the Italian unification. Sicily was given special status as an autonomous region on 15th May 1946. Sicily has a rich and unique culture, especially with regard to the arts, music, literature, cuisine, and architecture. It is also home to important archaeological and ancient sites, such as the Necropolis of Pantalica, the Valley of the Temples, Erice and Selinunte.


June 21 2013 Etna enters in full rights the UNESCO World Heritage List. The World Heritage Committee, in Phnom Pehn, has issued its unanimous verdict on the registration of Europe’s higgest active volcano.
The motivation for inscription reads as follows: Mount Etna is one of the world’s most active and iconic volcanoes, and outstanding example of ongoing geological processes and volcanic landforms. The stratovolcano is characterised by almost continuous eruptive activity from its summit craters and fairly frequent lava flow eruptions from craters and fissures on its flanks. This exceptional volcano activity has been documented by humans for at least 2700 years – making it one of the world’s longest document records of historical volcanism.
Etna is the world’s most active volcanoes in terms of eruptive frequency and the highest in Europe standing at about 3350 metres; its base circumference is about 250 kms for a volcanic area of roughtly 1400 sq kms.


Catania is situated at the center of the Ionian coast in eastern Sicily and extends from the sea to the foothills of Etna. The city was fonded in 729 BC by Greek colonists from Chalcis , who gave it the name of Katane.  No one monument or building of the greek period has unfortunately survived today. Everything has been covered by lava or replaced by the other conquerors. With the Roman conquest of 263 BC, for Catina (the latin name of the city) To this period belong many important monument still existant and, most of them, visitable: The amphitheatre, the theatre, the odeum and many thermae (Piazza Currò, under Piazza Duomo which is still visitable nowaday, Via della Rotonda). After the romans, Catania’s history has been marked by the succession of several rulers: the barbarian invasions, the Arabs, the Byzantine until almost the elevenh century. In 1071, the Norman occupied Catania. At this period is dated the building of the Cathedral in the style of a church-fortress, but the church was more times distroyed, due to earthquakes, and rebuilt. Under the will of Friedrick II the Swabian, at the beginning of the thirteenth century, one of the most important monument in Catania, the Castello Ursino, was built. Catania became a royal city. The centuries 1500s-1600’s, under the government of Spain with Charles V, represented for the city a period of deep decline characterized by starving, pestilence and lower class revolts. This years has been also marked by the catastrophic Etna’s 1669 eruption, which covered part of the city and the port, as it reached the sea. The worst disaster was, however, the earthquake occurred on january 1693, when Catania was almost razed to the ground and two-thirds of the population perished. The rebuild works, under the plan of the Duke of Camastra, enjoyed the assistance of valuable architects, of whom Giambattista Vaccarini stood out, giving to Catania the current checkerboard street map and the uniform style, in term of decorations and materials (black lava and light-coloured limestones),which is known in all the world as the “Catanese baroque”.