Destination - Montalbano Elicona

The ancient village is located 900 m MSL with a wonderful view of unspoiled nature: on one side you can admire the Tyrrhenian Sea and the Aeolian Islands, on the other one the peaks of the Nebrodi Mountains and in the background the majesty of the Etna volcano. Here you can find the centuries-old wood of Malabotta – recognized as an Oriented Nature Reserve – and the Megaliths of Argimusco, magical and mysterious presences that have come down to us from prehistoric times, when in relation to the position of the sun and Etna they were used by men to celebrate the their rites of birth, life and death.

Numerous dominations have followed over time. The configuration of the village, typical of the medieval age, dates back to the period of the Norman conquest (1061). The alleys wind between the ancient houses, around the churches and the feudal castle. A famous monument, the Swabian-Aragonese Castle, is a fortress of Byzantine origin, enriched with towers in the Norman period, destructed by Frederick II of Swabia (1233) and rebuilt and enlarged by Frederick II of Aragon (1302 – 1308) which transformed it into one of the most harmonious and rational architectures of the Sicilian Middle Ages. The most extraordinary piece of the entire castle is the royal chapel of the Byzantine era, which today houses the remains of Arnaldo da Villanova, doctor and personal adviser to King Federico, alchemist and religious reformer in the odor of heresy, who died in 1311.

Diritti - Federico di Dio

Visit of the Swabian-Aragonese Castle and the basilica of "Maria Santissima dell'Assunta"


The ancient magic of the Argimusco megaliths


ACTIVITIES: sites of historical, cultural and landscape interest

DURATION: half day or full day

Girtompir, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons
Montalbano Elicona