Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Catania's Boschetto


Tucked away behind the Playa - Catania's sandy beach - is the Boschetto della Playa, one of the few truly green zones in Catania. The word boschetto, little forest, evokes images of evergreens, and indeed the main feature of this park is a wooded area filled with pine trees, just big enough to give the sense of a real forest. The tall trees create delightful shade in the hot summer months, and the winding paths that zig zag through them are perfect for biking, jogging or playful discovery.

Apparently the pines are remnants of the ancient Roman's efforts at forestation: they used the wood from such trees for ship building.  

In order to get to the trees you have to navigate past a large, man-made pond full of ducks, turtles and fish, or else a picnic area and a sandy playground.

One hot spring day we found ourselves equally dividing our time between the playground swings, pretend fishing at the pond (uh-oh, the littlest fell in!), and the tree-lined paths, which with a little 5 year old imagination was transformed into a tiger-filled jungle.

This is a very popular destination on weekends for Catanese families who often have picnics here, as as well as joggers and bikers.  

5 comments:

  1. I love your first picture. It reminds me of Bosca di Quisquina near Santo Stefano di Quisquina in Agrigento. We bought a house last summer in Cianciana, about 30 minutes from this forest which has a beautiful old hermitage tucked away in the middle of it. There are no longer any hermits living there (the last one died in the 80s) but it is a museum now - and a fascinating one at that. I am really enjoying reading your posts and I've added a link on my blog!

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  2. Dear Diana, Thank you so much for you comment. Now you have me curious about this forest, another place to add to my list of future Sicilian adventures!

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  3. It is a really interesting spot. It is the first place that Santa Rosalia lived in a cave before she moved to a cave near Palermo. Her statue stands in the parking lot before you walk through the forest towards the hermitage. You can actually go into the cave! Or you can if you are skinny enough (my husband could, I couldn't, lol.)

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  4. This is a wonderful place and I visited it three years ago. Now I am planning to go there with my family. Your post is really interesting.

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  5. Hi I'm Heather! Please email me when you get a chance, I have a question about your blog! LifesABanquet1(at)gmail.com

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