Palio dei Normanni, Cavalieri quartiere Monte – ph. Filippo Guastella
Going through the many rooms and the long corridors of Villa Romana del Casale amounts to being transported to ancient Rome. The villa, listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, is a work of monumental importance both for its size and its historical value. Its elegant mosaics, adorning more than a 3500 square meters floors, attract people from all over the world. They suggest us what life was like at the end of III A.D. We recommend visiting the site with the assistance of an authorized guide.
10 – Aidone, Archaeological Museum and the archaeological site of Morgantina
Walking through the narrow streets of Aidone, among palaces and churches, we arrive at the highest point of the village where we find the ruins of a mighty fortress built by the Arabs as an outpost and observation point. It was fortified and transformed into a castle. Nowadays the remains of the Castellaccio are a shapeless heap of ruins surrounded by a beautiful view of the valley. Going down the Via Roma, the Church of St. Dominic or St. Vincent Ferrer, with the characteristic facade in diamond-cut ashlar (XV sec), and the Church of St. Anne dating back to seventeenth century and keeping a wooden crucifix ascribed to Friar Humble from Petralia.
If you are here during the month of May, you can be present at the renowned pilgrimage and to the Festival of St. Philip the Apostle. The night before May 1, hundreds of people gather to worship the black saint, St. Filippo. The pilgrimage concludes in the Church of Santa Maria La Cava, in Cordova Square, dominated by the Adelasia Tower dating back to the Norman period.
The Archaeological Museum is inside the former Capuchin monastery (XVII century). The Church of San Francesco, annexe to the building, is equipped as museum auditorium. In the halls of the museum of ceramics, we find pottery in the shape of horn, stone and bone tools, vases of Morgeti, the founders of Morgantina, evidence of the Hellenic presence in the site.
In the hall Serra Orlando we find the Persephone busts and votive offerings of a culture that worshiped Demeter, Persephone, Aphrodite, Hermes. Of enormous value, not only for the metal, the Morgantina silver, the metopes and the statue of the Goddess to which an entire room is dedicated.