Did you know?
Piazza Armerina is a sicilian town and a world famous archaeological site perched on the Erean Mountains. Its main attraction is the Villa Romana del Casale, Sicily's most astonishing late-Roman building. A UNESCO World Heritage Site dating back to the 4th century BC, structured in many rooms, patios, spas and peristyles.
More About Piazza Armerina
Villa Romana del Casale boasts beautiful mosaic floors covering an area about 3,500 square meters and depicting everyday life scenes, mythological and erotic subjects, emphasizing the relaxed atmosphere that reigned in this country during the Empire's heydays.
The 14th century Aragonese Castle commissioned by Martin I of Aragon dominates Piazza Armerina's historic center where the imposing 17th century Gothic-Aragonese Cathedral of Maria Santissima delle Vittorie stands, decorate with many artworks, including a valuable Byzantine painting depicting the Madonna delle Vittorie. The Cathedral Treasury contains precious sacred vessels, monstrances, chalices, relics and a Count Roger on horseback statue.
Once the site of a few religious orders, the town boasts many churches and convents. The twelfth century Romanesque Grand Priory of Sant'Andrea is Piazza Armerina's oldest church. For centuries it was the seat of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, whose Grand Prior was appointed by the King of Sicily with Pope's approval.
The Church of Sant'Ignazio was the first dedicated to the saint just after his beatification by the Jesuits who settled in the city at the beginning of the seventeenth century. Its boasts lavish baroque altars decorated with precious paintings. Frescoes and stucco cover the college's rooms and halls, once an important educational and cultural center housing nowadays the Municipal Library, with significant collection of ancient books and manuscripts.
The Norman Palio takes place every year on August 12th to 14th commemorating the triumphal arrival of Roger de Hauteville and its troops. One of the most captivating folk festivals in Sicily, it includes a historical costume horse ride and a carousel where the four city neighborhoods challenge each other for the conquest of the Madonna delle Vittorie banner.