I travelled with my friend to Catania and stayed at the Best Western Hotel Mediterraneo for 3 nights. The staff of the hotel are very friendly and helpful, giving maps and info. Antonella's English was excellent and she was very eager to assist us. The room was spacious with 2 large beds, a balcony and en-suite bathroom.Everything was spotless clean. They even change your bedsheets every day if you want, still telling you about environmental and economical issues. Breakfast was only continental but there was plenty of it, tea, coffee,milk,yoghurt, fresh juices, breads, pastries, fruit, cereals, cheeses, cold meats and even boiled eggs and omelettes. You can also order freshly brewed coffee/capuccino and granita ice cream! There is also a selection of gluten free options.
We have read other reviews, and we'll write for those who are no longer young and fit! Even if we could walk from the hotel to the city centre, we preferred to spend 8 EURO and get a taxi.Thus, we could walk in the centre and spend more time there.
We had an unpleasant surprise with Terassa del Barone which only opened at 8pm. So, no food options during daytime.On the other hand, we found excellent food at reasonable prices in the restaurants near Piazza del Duomo. You could also try Trattoria La Canonica(next to St Agatha Church), which is a beautiful place serving traditional food and wine .As for desserts, you should try a cannoli with ricota cheese, they're delicious. If you want to buy traditional sweets, to take home, ask the hotel staff about Sottile, which is very close to the hotel and has good prices(a cookie 1,5 EURO in Piazza del Duomo and 0,50 in Sottile!).
As for the tours, we chose "Katane live" company(the yellow one,in Piazza del Duomo), and the young lady was very nice and helpful and we had a good time going to Aci castello and Aci trezza. They had audio guides in several languages and it was relaxing to sit and listen to the commentary.It was also pretty cheap.
We also chose Etna Tribe for 1/2 trip to Naxos Giardini,Isola Bella, Castelmonte and Taormina, and that was an excellent choice.
All in all Catania was a wonderful experience! less