Syracuse, located on the South-East coast of Sicily, is considered one of the most beautiful cities in the island, so that it was declared UNESCO Heritage. Its most beautiful historic and artistic treasures are enclosed within Ortygia, the oldest centre of the city.

Would you like to visit the surroundings, after having admired the local marvels? Choose the car rental in Ortygia, served by

Ortygia and the Cathedral of Syracuse

Ortygia bears on its monuments the traces of its history, made of dominations by the Greeks, the Byzantines, up to the Aragonese and the Arabians. It is, substantially, an islet, connected to the rest of the city by a bridge, Ponte Umbertino: crossed this latter, where the statue of Archimedes, born right in Syracuse, stands out, and crossed the harbour, you will get to Piazza Pancali, where there are the remains of the ancient Doric temple of Apollo, among the oldest ones in Sicily.

The church, named after the Nativity of Mary Most Holy, dominates the spacious elliptic square, fine and of a very bright white: the Cathedral of Syracuse was born upon a core dating back to the V century B.C. constituted by the temple of the goddess Athena. Even though it was severely damaged by a terrible earthquake in 1693, today the church presents a splendid façade in a mix of styles, Rococo and Baroque: inside the columns of the temple are still visible, even though 2.400 years are gone.

With the car rental service in Ortygia, you can comfortably reach the beauties in the surroundings of Syracuse and not only.

From Piazza Duomo to the Castle

Very elegant noble buildings, such as Palazzo Borgia, Palazzo Beneventiano and the church of Santa Lucia, whose prestige is inside since it preserves the painting “Burial of St Lucy” by Caravaggio, overlook Piazza Duomo.

Left Piazza Duomo, which preserves under the pavement a hypogeum system made of shafts and tunnels, you can reach the legendary Arethusa fountain: a circular basin of freshwater, dotted with papyri. Legend has it that it is nothing but the nymph Arethusa, turned into a fountain by Artemis to get away from the courtship by Alphaeus, son of Ocean.

Right from this fountain the sea promenade Maniace departs, which directly leads to the Maniace Castle, at the extremity of Ortygia island, so called in honour of the Byzantine warlord who drove the Arabians out of the city. Its squared structure, with the angle cylindric towers, dates back to the XIII century and presents itself impressive from the sea, so wanted by Fredrich II of Swabia to scare enemies. A walk through the bastions and the towers offers spectacular views over the city and the opposite sea.