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CIANCIANA

Cianciana
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Surrounded by the Monti Sicani range and shrouded in the green valley of the Platani River, the town of Cianciana has about 3,500 inhabitants, and, with its mining quarries, has been one of the greatest producers of sulphur in Italy. The peculiar hexagonal shape of the sulphur crystal mined in the territory of Cianciana made it an actual attraction, besides an economic resource, so much that you can find the sulphur crystals of Cianciana in the major museums of natural history around the world, from London to Berne, from Milan to Washington. Actually, the history of Cianciana begins with salt, not with sulphur. It seems that even the Cretans, as early as the 2nd millennium B.C., would navigate the Halykos River (the current Platani) to reach an ancient salt pan, and later called “Chiancana”. After the Cretans, for centuries, also the Greeks, the Romans and the Arabs used the salt of this territory (especially the Arabs were cunning salt merchants). In the modern and medieval ages, in fact, thanks also to the various water springs of the Platani River Valley, the economy of the territory was mainly rural. The mining of the sulphur fields, discovered in the first half of 1800, revolutionised the economic and social structure of Cianciana, causing a rise in the birth rate. But, along with the economic welfare, the mines brought also despair and death. Today, these stories live in the tales of the residents and in the remains of some old mines, like those of Grotticelli and Falconera. In addition to this historical-cultural heritage that awaits the travellers who wish to experience in person the culture of the sulphur mines, Cianciana offers a natural landscape unique and full of charm, especially thanks to the Platani River, the Millaga Necropolis, the enchanting Maccalube of Bissana and the mysterious grottoes of Monte Cavallo: an invaluable treasure that awaits to be discovered.

 

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Progetto Cofinanziato dall’Unione Europea
Programma Operativo FESR – Fondo Europeo di Sviluppo Regionale Sicilia 2007/2013 Asse 3
Obiettivo Operativo 3.3.3 – Linea di Intervento 3.3.3 A, Attività C
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