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Monastero dei Benedettini

Certificate of Excellence
Neighbourhood: Centro Catania
As featured in Visit Sicily
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Address: Piazza Dante 32, 95124 Catania, Sicily, Italy
Phone Number:
+39 095 710 2767
09:00 - 17:00
Closed now
See all hours
Sun - Sat 09:00 - 17:00

Il Monastero di San Nicolo l'Arena di Catania (#monasterocatania), gioiello...

Il Monastero di San Nicolo l'Arena di Catania (#monasterocatania), gioiello del tardo barocco siciliano e tra i complessi benedettini piu' grandi d'Europa. L'edificio monastico, che nasce nel '500 e si sviluppa fino ai giorni nostri, e' un esempio di integrazione architettonica tra le epoche: contraddistinto da molteplici trasformazioni oggi e' patrimonio mondiale dell'Unesco. Sede del DiSUM (dipartimento di Scienze Umanistiche) dell'Universita' degli Studi di Catania, custodisce al suo interno due domus romane, i chiostri e un intero piano costruito da G. B. Vaccarini sopra il banco lavico del 1669. Dal 2010 Officine Culturali, in collaborazione con l'Universita degli Studi di Catania, si occupa della valorizzazione del Monastero dei Benedettini. Il Monastero e' considerato uno dei beni culturali piu' significativi del meridione d'Italia. La missione assunta da Officine Culturali consiste nel rendere accessibile e comprensibile il Monastero nel migliore dei modi e al maggior numero di persone possibile. A tal scopo Officine Culturali ha attivato un'offerta di fruizione variegata e dinamica. Attraverso il servizio di visite guidate giornaliero e' possibile conoscere gli aspetti piu' significativi dell'ex plesso monastico. I percorsi guidati per i piu' piccoli sono arricchiti dai laboratori, dove la narrazione delle "arti e mestieri" benedettini e' svolta in maniera creativa e divertente da professionisti della didattica dell'arte, dell'architettura, delle tradizioni e delle scienze. Oltre al quotidiano svolgimento delle attivita' di promozione, valorizzazione, informazione e accoglienza, Officine Culturali e' promotrice di iniziative ed eventi culturali e di intrattenimento, finalizzati a rendere il Monastero uno spazio di integrazione e aggregazione per la collettivita'.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 1,403 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 105
  • 71
    Very good
  • 16
  • 5
  • 0
Best tour in Catania

I have been there on a festive day and it was thr only tour available during that day. The guide was realy nice, gave a lot of info not only about the monastery but about the... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 6 January 2017
Ariana C
via mobile
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1,403 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 197: English reviews
Level Contributor
34 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 January 2017 via mobile

I have been there on a festive day and it was thr only tour available during that day. The guide was realy nice, gave a lot of info not only about the monastery but about the entire town, also regarding what other places could be visited.

Thank Ariana C
Singapore, null, Singapore
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 January 2017

We chanced upon this place while searching online and was intrigued. Went early in the morning at 9am to sign up for the guided tour and we were very lucky to be the only 2 in line and thus, the guide Carmello (not sure if i spelt it properly) was able to conduct the tour for us in English. I... More 

Thank Huiling86
Zug, Switzerland
Level Contributor
482 reviews
180 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 221 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 January 2017

Very interestig site, with a rich history. Nowadays it houses both a university as well as a museum. There is a guided tour conducted by very knowledgeable guides, but in Italian only (there is a handout in English summarizing the guide's comments).

Thank GranZorro
Makati, Philippines
Level Contributor
13 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 December 2016 via mobile

Can't really provide any help to those who love a guided tour, but for those that like to 'self educate' this place is great. It's a functioning college and we just walked around and through the many rooms. Wikipedia will tell you a lot of what you need to know and you can appreciate the architecture in about 60 minutes.... More 

Thank John B
Zabbar, Malta
Level Contributor
146 reviews
50 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 December 2016

You can walk around the Monastero free of charge, but a €7 fee per person will get you the guided tour. On the hour in Italian, and once a day in English I believe, but best to call ahead/ email for the time of the English tour. The tour lasted around 1 hour and it was the only way to... More 

Thank P-and-J-Malta
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 November 2016 via mobile

I lucked out and was alone on what was planned to be an Italian tour. The tour guide was a true gem, explaining the immense history of the monastery as well as sharing restaurant tips. A baroque monastery housing roman ruins and lava flows. A very interesting place, lively as it houses Catania's liberal arts university. Truly fascinating.

Thank Keith P
Catania, Italy
Level Contributor
59 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 November 2016

This is a must-visit place on a trip to Catania. Very good service, unfortunately speaking mostly in Italian, but they provide reading materials following the guide in various languages. I really enjoyed the visit.

1 Thank Oksana_Barkhat
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 November 2016

In the heart of old Catania, erected thought the centuries, you will find this spectacular monastery. Its baroque architecture and impressive size will take your breath away. I recommend you take a tour with the local guides to learn more about the history of the monastery and its many legends. This is definitely my favourite place to sit down and... More 

Thank Alessandro C
Silver Spring, Maryland
Level Contributor
31 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 October 2016

So many people encouraged us to visit this monastery that we squeezed it in at the end of our last day in Catania, taking a 5:00 tour in Italian, even though we don't speak Italian. The tour office noted we would have the printed guide in English so we thought it might suffice. Sadly, the guide was quite brief, so... More 

Thank Karen L
Weybridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
88 reviews
46 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 October 2016

A massive monastery which is difficult to navigate even with a map. There are guided tours but we were told they were only in Italian. Beautiful staircases and cloisters. Be sure to visit the church next door too which is also enormous with beautiful marble flooring depicting the signs of the zodiac.

1 Thank Jo S

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