Sicily is a unique island. It is the place where Archimedes once lived and taught. St Paul preached here. It was a Greek Colony, a Roman Province, an Arab Emirate and a Norman Kingdom. Many civilizations have called this wonderful island home, and this had led to the cultural diversity that exists today. It is a magical place, full of history, folklore, amazing architecture and breath-taking scenery.
Discover The Capital City Palermo
Palermo is a city overflowing with culture and wonderful restaurants. The weather is typically Mediterranean, and tourists enjoy visiting the city’s many Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque churches and palaces. Palermo is now emerging from decades of Mafia domination. It is a city of contrasts, offering elegant shopping malls and noisy outdoor markets. You will find a wonderful mix of cultures and fantastic nightlife.
The streets of Old Palermo are a maze of outdoor markets which have been around for nine centuries. As you wander through the labyrinth of narrow streets. You will discover hidden secrets, beautiful old churches and palazzo (palaces).
Palermo and the surrounding villages have beautiful beaches and will not disappoint those seeking the sun. Mondello Beach is located close to the city, and there is a direct bus route which makes it accessible if you don’t have a car. This beach can be very crowded in the summer months, but is renowned for the many restaurants and bars in close proximity. Arenella is a small beach to the east of Palermo, it is an urban beach, but less crowded. Cefalù is a quaint town about an hour from the city, and offers a beautiful public beach. If you would prefer to escape the city and stay in a resort the San Vito Lo Capo is the place to go. It’s situated about an hour west of Palermo. You can also soak up the sun at Isola delle Fammine, or at Campofelice di Roccella
Beach time is a must in the Mediterranean. Six Sicilian beaches, Porto Paolo (Menfi), Pozzallo, Ispica (Ragusa), Fiumefreddo-Cottone (Catania), Spiaggia Bianca (Lipari) and Marina di Ragusa were rated as having the cleanest water in Europe.. It is important to note that some of the beaches on the island are remote and do not have lifeguards.
Once you have discovered the delights and history of Palermo, there are plenty of other must see places on and around the island of Sicily. Take a trip to the Aeolian Islands, easily accessible by ferry in the summer months. Here you will find outstanding beaches and exceptional seafood. A day spent in Erice, is a day well spent. This historic hilltop town dates back to Elymian times, and has last since then through Phoenician, Carthaginian and Roman times. Whilst wandering around the cobbled streets don’t forget to try a few of the local pastries.
Wine Lovers Paradise
Sicily is home to more vineyards than any other region in Italy. But for some reason Sicilians consume less wine per capita than other Italians. You can sample local wines in all restaurants. However, if you want to find the best vineyards we suggest you take a drive along the SS188 to Marsala. This route won’t be full of traffic, but you will find endless hills and vineyards as far as the eye can see. You can visit wine estates along the way. Several good red and white wines are produced all over the island on Estates such as Corvo, Regaleali and Rapitalà. November 11th is dedicated to Saint Martin, and the Festa del Vino takes place. It is the day when it is believed that the wine is ready for consumption. Well worth joining in that event!
No trip to Sicily would be complete without visiting the world famous Mount Etna. A Jeep excursion is a fantastic way to take in the sights. The upper regions are covered in snow during some months, and it is advisable to dress warmly even in the summer months. To the north of Etna you’ll find the lush forest of the Nebrodi Mountains. This mountain range boasts some of the highest peaks in Sicily.
Tour Guides And Travel
We would advise choosing tour guides and translators with care. Make sure that you appoint a registered company. Driving can be challenging in the cities as traffic can be chaotic to say the least. We recommend that you make use of taxi’s and buses.
Sicily has something for everyone. It is the place where you can take in culture from the Hellenic age through to the wonderful Middle Ages and the Renaissance. You can soak up the sun, visit historical sights, enjoy a day at the various vineyards, delight in the fantastic cuisine and shop to your heart’s content. In a nutshell Sicily is a world on its own. It is an enchanting island full of complexities. It is a unique, wonderful place, and definitely worthwhile visiting.