Agrigento, Sicily’s ancient chief town, is one of the Island’s loveliest and most visited places.
The city is renowned all over the world for the spectacular Valle dei Templi (Valley of the Temples), characterized by the sumptuous constructions of the ancient city of Akragas. The Greek temples situated on the rocky crest facing the Mediterranean Sea bring to mind an era far removed from this day and age.
Besides its Greek constructions, the city of Agrigento has an old town center rich in beautiful historical monuments, such as the Cathedral, which features a wide flight of steps, the XV century bell tower and the wooden ceiling with lacunars dating back to circa 1682.
The church of San Maria dei Greci built on the remains of a temple, the Hellenistic-Roman District, many palazzi belonging to the nobility and the Santo Spirito City Museum, which houses objects and tools of rural life: plows, sieves, utensils for everyday use and for work. Moreover the museum houses a collection of oil paintings on canvas by the painter Francesco Lojacono from Palermo (late nineteenth century) and some specimens of folk costumes.
In addition to the temples of Hercules, Jupiter, Concord, Juno, Dioscuri, Vulcan and Demeter, there is also the District of Hellenistic-Roman homes, the monumental complex with the “Cavea” of the Hellenistic Ekklesiasterion and the National Museum of Agrigento which helps us experience the Greek impact on the city. Recently, in 2004, a small Roman temple was discovered.
Throughout the year the city of Agrigento hosts several events, for instance, the feast of the blossoming almond tree and the international folklore festival. These are the most important festive expressions of the Sicilian people.