Revival of Alcantara-Randazzo railway: from abandoned line to railway tourism gem

The article explains the ongoing project for the tourist recovery of the Alcantara-Randazzo railway line between the stations of Alcantara and Motta Camastra. Fondazione Fs Italiane has started interventions, thanks to funds from the Ministry of Culture and through Rete Ferroviaria Italiana (which leads the Infrastructure sector of the FS Group), as part of the interventions planned by the Pnrr.

A press conference was held at the Taormina-Giardini station to outline the schedule of works leading to the reopening of the first 13 kilometers of the Alcantara-Randazzo railway line for tourism. The event was attended by the General Director of Fondazione Fs Italiane, Luigi Cantamessa, the director of the Territorial Infrastructure Operational Department of RFI Palermo, Carmine Rogolino, and the tourism assessor of the Sicilian Region, Elvira Amata. The opening of the first 13 kilometers is scheduled by 2026, with a funding of 19 million euros allowing the extension up to Motta Camastra station, with the possibility of further extension to Francavilla.

The Andazzo-Alcantara route connected the northern side of Mount Etna with the Messina-Catania coastal railway line. It branched off from the Alcantara station, still in operation today, and followed the Alcantara river valley, reaching Randazzo in a winding and mostly uphill path, featuring 13 viaducts and eight tunnels. Planned at the end of the 19th century but built between 1928 and 1959, the line was interrupted by a lava flow in 1981 and restored in 1983, only to be closed in the early ’90s. The railway was always managed economically and locally, never fully utilized. However, its tourist potential is undeniable as it passes just meters away from the famous Alcantara Gorges at Fondaco Motta, a site of significant environmental value and a destination for important traveler flows.

Rinasce la ferrovia Alcantara-Randazzo: da linea dismessa sarà una perla del turismo ferroviario

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