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“Must see for history buffs”

Museo Storico dello Sbarco in Sicilia 1943
Ranked #5 of 172 things to do in Catania
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: The "Allied Landings in Sicily Museum" (Museo Storico dello Sbarco in Sicilia 1943) is housed in one of the buildings forming the "Ciminiere" cultural centre. The museum narrates the events that took place in Sicily from 10 July to 8 September 1943. This period is still recent history, only seventy years have passed and many senior citizens can still recount the experience. Everything that we have forgotten is now conserved in this museum which aims to protect our most precious asset: peace. The museum is arranged on three floors covering an area of 3,000 square metres, including a temporary exhibition area. By means of reconstructed settings the museum has tried to recreate the conditions of life before, during and after the war, using simulations, projections and original exhibits.
Los Angeles, California
Level 6 Contributor
103 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 167 helpful votes
“Must see for history buffs”
Reviewed February 20, 2013

We have visited history museums in other European cities and this one is definitely one of the better ones. We only had about two hours to visit this museum. We could have spent half a day.

The museum is well-curated. Some highlights: You can experience being in a bomb shelter while bombing occurs overhead and walk into a bunker. Additionally, there are life-size figures of men who played critical roles in Sicily's history during WW II. There are a collection of uniforms worn by the soldiers from various countries. A relief map with an overhead projector shows the day to day advancement of the Allied Forces.

Should we return to Catania, it would be worth our time to revisit this museum.

Visited January 2013
2 Thank SDAG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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584 reviews from our community

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English first
Cambridge, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Excellent museum illustrating Sicily during WWII”
Reviewed January 29, 2013

Well-located and easily reachable (just a couple of hundred metres from the train station in Catania), the Museo dello Sbarco is definitely worth including in any visit to Catania. The prescribed route through the museum starts off in a reconstructed "piazza" which could be have been located in any small Sicilian town of the 1940s. Passing through a bunker, in which you get to experience what it would have been like during one of the raids, you exit into the "same" piazza after it has been destroyed by the allies bombs. It's a stark impression.
After that, the route takes you through the well laid-out exhibits, clearly labelled and displayed, and detailing some fascinating aspects of the second world war in Sicily. There is some fascinating and poignant black and white footage and plenty of maps and photographs to explain the course of events.
The route through the museum finishes with a haunting reconstruction of a war cemetery and scrolling display of the the "roll of honour".
I visited with two ten year old boys who already had a keen fascination for the topic, were inevitably wrapped up in the 'guns' and who had heard much about the stories of the war from grandparents who lived through it. However, the poignancy of this final room gave them pause for thought and they sat, immovable, for a full ten minutes just reading the list of names of the fallen.
It was an excellent visit and got the thumbs up from all of us. We stayed about an hour and a half - which was perfect for the boys - but I could have stayed at least as long again and still been absorbed.

Visited January 2013
2 Thank Milazzo06
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Watertown, New York
Level 5 Contributor
45 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Great Learning Experience”
Reviewed October 15, 2012

Really enjoyed the learning experience. Never completely understood the impact of what took place in Sicily. Great learning experience. But as others have said, this museum provided more. What it was like to live in Sicily. What Italians' went through. I was more interested in the order of battle, but the museum was wonderful across all educational levels. Well worth the visit!

Visited May 2012
1 Thank DAKonop
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Crete, Nebraska
Level 6 Contributor
113 reviews
70 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 99 helpful votes
“Nice museum, but a long time standing”
Reviewed October 14, 2012

A nice museum that covers the history of the Sicily landings well, including a nice model that illustrates the progress of the campaign. You spend a lot of time standing listening to a detailed guide presentation, which is okay but not great.

Visited September 2012
Thank Tom709
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed September 7, 2012

I did not expect the museum to be so detailed and innovative, it can take hours to explore it all and covers all sides of the conflict. A must see.

Visited September 2012
1 Thank Dario122
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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