Etna villages: Trecastagni between churches and cellars

(C) Sicilying

You cannot discover Etna without having explored the towns located on its slopes. Here you can breathe history, tradition and flavors of a time now gone by that are worth discovering.

We will talk here about one of the Etna towns located on the slopes of the southern side of the volcano: Trecastagni.

There are conflicting opinions on the etymology of the name. Some claim that it derives from the Latin Tres castaneae, the name of the site where three large chestnut trees were found. Others instead, from Tres Casti Agni, or “the three chaste lambs”, with reference to the holy martyrs Alfio, Cirino and Filadelfo, co-patrons of the town, who stopped there during their transfer from Vaste to Lentini, place of martyrdom.

Trecastagni is one of the piedmont municipalities located at approximately 585 m above sea level and surrounded by various extinct volcanic cones of different ages and sizes such as: Monte Illice, Monte Gorna and Monte Serra.

Given its steep slope you can enjoy a fantastic panorama that goes from Calabria to Augusta.

paesi dell'etna

If you are in Trecastagni, we recommend you visit the ancient Sanctuary of the Holy Martyrs Alfio, Cirino and Filadelfo dating back to 1662. Today it is a historical pilgrimage destination for faithful who come there from the city of Catania, and from neighboring towns during the month of May, the month in which the Holy Relics were found at the Monastery of San Filippo di Fragalà (ME).

Inside the premises of the Sanctuary, it is possible to visit the collection of ex votos, that is, an offering made to the Madonna or to the Three Saints in this case, as a sign of gratitude for a grace received. The thanksgiving offering made by the faithful can be a monetary donation, a precious object or the creation, thanks to local workers who work the wax, of a part of the body (limbs, breasts, eyes, heart) of the “miracle worker”. ”.

And what about the ancient mother church of San Nicola di Bari?

The church is located at the top of a monumental staircase, built in the 1400s and remodeled in the 18th century after the famous earthquake in the Val di Noto, it offers visitors valuable lava stone works and a breathtaking view.

Certainly, the foothill town of Trecastagni is known for the variety of its vineyards and cellars. With us, you can book a Wine tasting with cooking class in the cellar, at a winery that has been involved in organic farming for years. , an experience to live with family or friends… all under the majestic Etna volcano and the extinct crater of Monte Gorna.

The experience in the cellar is located along “The Etna wine road“, a love for the land and for wine that has been handed down for three generations. The vineyards are surrounded by oak and chestnut woods, where Nerello Mascalese and Nerello Cappuccio are planted for the production of Etna rosso and Carricante and Catarratto wines for the production of Etna bianco.

The peculiarity of these soils is that being lava soils, they are permeable and therefore able to contain many mineral salts (potassium, magnesium etc…), so it is worth tasting this Etna nectar!