2SS Route 34. LENT1NI. From Catania
mences; the steeper portions are more agreeably and safely tra¬
versed on foot. Before the plain of Nicolosi is reached, the
monastery of <S>. Nicolo d'Arena is seen to the 1. , where the
Benedictines of Catania celebrate their vintage-festival. It was
founded in 1156 by Simon Count of Policastro, nephew of
Instead of returning to Catania, the traveller may prefer to
proceed from Nicolosi to Taormina by Pedara Via Grande and
Aci Reale and thence by the high road to Giardini (p. 271).
34. From Catania to Syracuse by Lentini.
47 M. Diligence once daily (in 1869 at 9 p. m.) in 10 hrs.; fare
8 1. 50 c. Steamboat 3 times weekly in 4 hrs.; fares 151. and 7 1. 60c.
Disembarcation 85 c. Carriage with two horses 40—45 1. and fee; the dri¬
vers should be distinctly directed to perforin the journey in one day; other¬
wise they spend the night at Lentini. — Unless antiquarian research be the
traveller's object, the steamboat is the preferable conveyance. — The rail¬
way from Catania to Lentini is now nearly completed. Beyond Lentini the
works are at present suspended.
The road from Catania intersects in a straight direction the
Piano di Catania, the Campi Laestrygonii, which Cicero extols
as the "uberrima pars Sicilian". They are still regarded as the
granary of Sicily and the principal cotton - district of the island.
Carriages are ferried across the Giarretta, the river which is for¬
med by the Simeto (Syma-thus) on the 1. and the Gurna Lunga.
In winter the entire plain is frequently under water and the road
impassable. Malaria prevails in the lower parts in summer. The
hills by which the road ascends to Lentini afford a strikingly
beautiful view of yEtna. The road then descends to the valley
of the Fiume San Lionardo (ancient Pantacyas); to the 1. of its
influx is situated the so-called Pantano , a marshy pond frequen¬
ted by innumerable water-fowls in winter. The Lake of Lentini
(Biviere di Lentini), which is seen glittering in the background
to the r. , also affords abundant spoil to the sportsman or the
angler. This lake, the most considerable in Sicily, is usually-
swollen in winter, whilst its exhalations in summer poison the
atmosphere (Lentini therefore to be avoided as a resting-place
for the night). Its circumference varies from 10 to 14 M. accor¬
ding to the height of the water.
(17 M.) Lentini (Leone d'Oro; Vittoria, dirty; Aquila. The
Caffe and Trattoria Trinacria affords good refreshments), the
ancient Leontinoi, with 8000 inhab., one of the earliest Greek
settlements in Sicily, was founded B.C. 730 by colonists from
Naxos under Theocles, simultaneously with Catana.