On the slopes of Etna, in the resort of St.Alfio, stands the oldest tree in Europe: ” The Chestnut of a Hundred Horses”.
So called because the legend tells that Queen of Sicily, Joanna I of Angiò, who ended the battle of ninety years of Catania in 1347, during a hunting expedition on Mount Etna, was caught by a storm and found shelter, along with her hundred knights, just below the famous Chestnut Tree.
Withover 62 metersin circumference,25 metersin height and an approximateage of between 2000 and 4000 years, the Chestnut is now considered the oldest and largest tree in Europe. In addition it has been in The Guinness Book of Records since 18 May 2008, as part of world heritage asset, given the title ofMessenger of Peace in the World. This is because it is classed as the desired destination at any time, a refuge for men and women from all classes, all united by the common spirit to find themselves through peaceful contact with the uncontaminated nature.
San’.Alfio is also famous for the production of typical products of Etna Park such asalmond, pistachio, hazelnut, walnutandhoneypaste. In restaurants and farm holidays in the area you can enjoy the specialties such as freshhomemade pastawith pork sauce, withmushrooms, with wild fennel and with chestnuts. Try theBBQ meat and cheese.
Distance fromCatania38 km
Giarre/Risposto railway station 10 km from St.Alfio
A18 (highway 18) Messina-Catania-Siracusa exit Giarre, take SP5-I, drive for about 6km direction Macchia di Giarre, then Paoli Primo and Sant’Alfio.