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Aci Trezza is a charming little fishing village in the east of Sicily. If you are flying to / from Catania and you do not feel like spending a day in the city, Aci Trezza is a very good option as it is quite close and one of the best places to visit in Sicily.
We visit it at the end of our 10-day Sicily trip. The truth is that until the last day we didn’t decide whether to spend the last night in Aci Trezza or in Aci Castello, both towns very close to Catania.
Finally, we opted for Aci Trezza for its proximity to the Isole dei Ciclopi (also known as Faraglioni). These are tiny islands formed by the wonderful underwater activity of Etna volcano more than 500,000 years ago.
We spent in Aci Trezza a single day. However, it is more than enough time. Distances are very short and even in one afternoon, you can see everything.
TOP THINGS TO DO IN ACI TREZZA IN ONE DAY
There is not much to do in Aci Trezza, except enjoy its coastal cuisine, its Faraglioni and rest on one of the beaches. However, visiting Aci Trezza in one day can give you the moment of chill and relax you need after a non stop tour around Sicily.
BOAT TOUR BY THE FARAGLIONI DI ACI TREZZA
The best thing you can do in Aci Trezza is to go along the seafront admiring the Faraglioni and taking a boat tour that gets you to see them up close.
In our case we were very lucky with the chosen tour (the first one we saw when arriving at the port). The captain and his wife were very friendly and offered juice and drinks to us and the other couple of Italians who had taken the tour. They told us the myth of Ulysses and the Cyclopes and showed us the cave where the legend develops.
LEGEND OF THE CYCLOPES
The Odyssey of Homer says that Ulysses arrived with his boat at the Isole dei Ciclopi, where they found a cave full of food and drink. The Ulysses’ men and he began to eat a good feast.
Suddenly Polyphemus, the most powerful of the Cyclops and owner of the cave caught them inside.
When the one-eyed giant had already devoured several of the intruders, Ulysses gave him the strongest wine to drink. Drunk, Polyphemus asked him his name and he said he was “Nobody.” At the moment Polyphemus fell into a very deep sleep due to alcohol; that moment Ulysses and the survivors took advantage to put a branch in the single eye, leaving him blind. Because of the pain, Polyphemus awoke and began to scream that nobody had attacked him. The rest of the Cyclops after hearing this thought he would be drunk or crazy and they did not come to help him.
The next morning the giant took his sheep to graze. As he was blind he touched the back of each sheep to see that none of Odysseus’ men rode them. However he was overlooked touching his wombs, where Ulysses and the others clung to escape. Realizing the trap Polyphemus burned in anger. He took giant stones and threw them trying to bring down the ship where Ulysses was trying to flee.
According to Greek mythology the Faraglioni of Aci Trezza is nothing other than the stones that Polyphemus threw at the boat of Ulysses.
As he told the story, he sailed in the direction of Aci Castello. Before turning we were allowed to take a bath in the deep waters of the sea.
I do not remember the name of the company we hired for the tour. As soon as you go to the port you will see several boats offering this service. The price was €15 per person.
VIA LUNGOMARE DEI CICLOPI
After the tour we went to have a bath in front of the Faraglioni, in the Via Lungomare dei Ciclopi. The beach wasn’t sandy but rocky. Even so, there were a lot of tourists, especially Italians. The views were simply spectacular. However, they should take care of cleaning the Area Marina Protetta Isole Ciclopi a bit more, because it was full of garbage. And it’s a shame because the setting is incredibly beautiful.
After a little exploring, we found a slightly cleaner corner and we spent the whole afternoon jumping into the sea from the rocks.
VISIT to ACI CASTELLO
After dinner, we decided to visit Aci Castello. It takes about 20 minutes to get there on foot.
The atmosphere could not be more peculiar. It reminded us -somehow- of Palermo. Countless groups of teenagers were racing with their scooters and competed to see who played the loudest music. The city was a creepy street party. Not only young people from Aci Castello, but also from Catania, Aci Trezza and surrounding villages. The worst part was the crazy way they drove their scooters.
We saw, briefly, the Castello Normando di Aci Castello, located in the main square. After taking an ice cream we returned, with the fear of being run over by a scooter.
sunrise at THE FARAGLIONI DEI CICLOPI
The next morning we woke up to enjoy and photograph the sun rising behind the Faraglioni.
Of course the best time to enjoy the Riviera dei Ciclopi is at dawn, when there are not any tourists and there is a peaceful atmosphere.
WHERE TO EAT IN ACI TREZZA
In our day in Aci Trezza, in addition to buying arancini several times in a bakery that was next to our accommodation, we tried two different restaurants.
We had lunch at La Cambusa del Capitano, a place where, although its specialty is fish and seafood, it was not hard for me to find something vegetarian. We accompany the food, as during the whole trip, with local white wine.
For dinner, we went to the pizzería L’Aragosta, where we enjoyed our last Sicilian pizzas.
Both restaurants are highly recommended. What I would recommend, since we are going to be eating out for many days, is to buy the best international travel insurance.
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WHERE TO STAY IN ACI TREZZA
We stayed in this accommodation, which was quite well located and not expensive.
If you do not like this option you can also search other accommodation in Aci Trezza here.
Would you recommend this place for a home base for a month in sicily
It depends on how many areas/places you like to visit in Sicily.
For visiting the East coast, it’s definitely a good home base, cheaper and not as busy as other touristy areas near Catania.
If you want to explore the West and areas of the interior this would be too far.