A city with 123 000 inhabitants, Syracuse is in the South Eastern part of Sicily, by the sea. It was founded in the 8th century BC by Greek settlers from Corinth.
It is now the main city of the Province of Syracuse. Its archeological park is home to the largest Greek theater in Sicily, a white marvel that was created within the rock itself. Cicero presented Syracuse as the greatest Greek city and the most beautiful of them all.
The festival is held on the peninsula of Ortigia, historical center of the antique city, UNESCO World Heritage.
Ortigia is a peninsula surrounded by clear waters. It is home for baroccan churches and palaces, Greek ruins and millenary fountains. At the corner of a street that is too narrow for a car, one is faced with the Mediterranean sea, the market of Ortigia, one of the oldest churches in Europe, the marina or the world famous Piazza Duomo. A few steps away, in the Santa Lucia alla Badia church, is « The Burial of St. Lucy » by Caravaggio.
The ruins of the Apollo temple face the Antico Mercato palace, which wil be the hub of the festival. Apollo was the Olympian god of prophecy and oracles, music, song and poetry, archery, healing, plague and disease, and the protection of the young. Since yoga is both and art and a science, the 1st edition of the festival has chosen Apollo as a patron. Syracuse is also the city where a famous scientist was born, Archimedes. Syracuse celebrates its 2750th anniversary in 2017.