Porto Empedocle sits on a hill gently sloping to the sea. It is a lovely sea-town belonging to the province of Agrigento and totalling some 18,000 inhabitants. Since the 15th century it has been an important harbor. Emperor Charles V had a defensive tower built on its shore in the 16th century.
The construction of loading jetties in the second half of the 1700s, at the behest of the Bishop Gioieni, boosted the economic and social growth of the city. In the 19th century it saw a new prosperous phase thanks to the exploitment of sulphur mines in its surrounding area. The Mother Church, dedicated to the Holy Saviour and built in the early 1900s, is the main attraction. In the city vicinity are the Vulcanetti di Maccalube, small craters from which gas-methane is emanated.