Agrigento to be Capitale Italiana della Cultura 2025.
The Sicilian city of Agrigento, famed for its rich archaeological heritage, will be the Italian Capital of Culture in 2025, the culture ministry announced in Rome on Friday.
Shortlisted towns and cities vying for the 2025 title presented their bids to a jury last week, with the winning candidate for the prestigious recognition chosen by Italian culture minister Gennaro Sangiuliano.
Agrigento saw off competition from the other nine finalists in the running for the coveted title: Aosta, Assisi, Astia, Bagnoregio, Monte S. Angelo, Orvieto, Pescina, Roccasecca and Spoleto.
Located on Sicily's southern coast, Agrigento is best known for its archaeological area, the Valley of the Temples, which has been recognised by UNESCO as a World Tangible Heritage site since 1997.
Founded as a Greek colony in the sixth century BC, Agrigento became one of the leading cities in the Mediterranean region.
The archaeological area covers the vast territory of the ancient polis, from the Rupe Atenea to the acropolis of the original ancient city, as well as to the sacred hill on which stand the main Doric temples and up to the extramural necropolis.
Earlier this year the northern Italian cities of Bergamo and Brescia took up their joint status as the 2023 Capital of Culture after Procida, the small island in the Gulf of Naples, concluded its term as title holder.
Italy's previous culture capitals include Cagliari, Lecce, Perugia, Ravenna and Siena in 2015, Mantua in 2016, Pistoia in 2017 and Palermo in 2018.
The Italian title skipped a year in 2019 when Matera, in the southern Basilicata region, became the European Capital of Culture.
In 2020 it was the turn of Parma to receive Italy's culture capital status, with the northern Italian city retaining the title for a second year to make up for the negative effects of the covid lockdowns.
Pesaro, on the Adriatic coast, will be Italy's Capital of Culture 2024.
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