Near the modern Fincantieri dockyard with its din of workers and machinery, there’s the majestic building of the ancient dockyard, known as the Arsenale Borbonico, as it was built in the mannerist style used during the Spanish domination (and the House of the Bourbons). On its facade one can still admire the fine Bourbon dynasty coat of arms. The project by Mariano Smiriglio was carried out between 1621 and 1630, and the Arsenale produced ships until 1845, many for the Spanish Royal Navy, such as the sciabecco ships used in the successful naval combats against Moroccan pirates. Scale models of these ancient ships are exposed inside the building which nowadays is a museum hosting temporary exhibitions, as well as a permanent one on the subject of sea traditions and culture. Here one can admire original ancient captaining books, and two imposing 18th-century cannons upon which the Bourbon coat of arms are impressed. The Arsenale is a bit out of the usual touristic tours, but the whole area around the monument is of great interest: right next to the building there’s the beautiful Marquis De Gregorio house, nearby there is the English Cemetery, the Montalbo Palace, the Smiriglio memorial, the Florio yard and Aquasanta thermal baths.
- Open Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 09:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Attractions & Landmarks, Science & Technology
- Nearest Train: Metro B - Stazione Giachery