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“Now a university”

Monastero dei Benedettini
Ranked #2 of 172 things to do in Catania
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: 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'.
Budapest, Hungary
Level 5 Contributor
47 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Now a university”
Reviewed 11 July 2014 via mobile

There are guided tours but as it is open every day for everyone we just wondered around. Nice to see how they converted the building into uni keeping the original architecture. Really nice garden in the middle of the main building

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
Thank SzonjaHU
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Brisbane, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
78 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“Fascinating”
Reviewed 6 July 2014

This was a great way to spend a few hours. There were no other visitors so I had a personal guided tour. It was fascinating to see the various areas of the monastery and see how it has been incorporated into the modern university. As in much of Sicily there were excavated Roman houses under the building and you could also see the lava from the big eruption that destroyed Catania in 1669. Inside the courtyard are the remains of a Roman road and just outside remains of a bath complex. The guide was terrific, very informative, and happy to answer questions. The students are very lucky to study in a place so steeped in history.

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
Thank Neve97
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC, District of Columbia
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Excellent example of sicilian Baroque”
Reviewed 27 June 2014

I suggest everybody to visit this beautiful building, where today is the base of Catania University. It is not easy to find, but I was very happy to have seen it, thanks to the advise of the guide...

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
Thank smile1985
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Zurich, Switzerland
Level 6 Contributor
98 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 116 helpful votes
“Very interesting”
Reviewed 12 June 2014

I visited it in May 2014, advised by a guy in the B&B. A part from the architectural aspect which is for sure nice but not the best example in Italy I think it was interesting to see the lava formation inside the building, you can see until where it arrived and what they did to prevent the lava from damaging the monastery more.Well worth going.

Visited May 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Federico M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Limoges, France
Level 6 Contributor
92 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
“Hidden treasure”
Reviewed 29 May 2014

This monastery is astonishing : when you enter you would say that it is just an ancient building, but when you visit it (I suggest you to take the guide, just a few euros more) you discover the university inside (the architect is a genius), the underground, the cloisters...it takes more than 1 hour to really visit it well but it's worthy !

Visited May 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Sara G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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