Sicily is the biggest island in the Mediterranean sea and is  separated from the Italian peninsula by the strait of Messina ( 3km only) . Part of the territory is mountainous and hilly. The coast offers a landscape of fascinating beauty and  groups of marvellous smaller islands are scattered around the coast ( i.e. the Eolie islands , Ustica, the Egadi islands, Pantelleria and Lampedusa , the latter not far from Lybia) . The economy is a mix of Agriculture ( Olive, Fruit, Vegetables, Wine), Fishing, Industry ( especially Chemical industries), and recently, only over the past few years,   Tourism has become important for the economy of the island.  As Sicily was in the past a Greek colony , the Hellenic heritage is remarkable together with Roman  and Arab -.Byzantine vestiges.

My Suggestions:

It is not easy for me to indicate some area/cities because the whole region is worth a visit.  I will start off  from the north-west: Palermo ( capital of the region) was founded by the Phoenicians and so its history counts over 2000 years . In Palermo you can visit the historical centre and some Churches and Palaces of various style, Norman and Arab architecture. From Palermo you can easily reach  ( 15 Km) the city of Monreale  for a visit to the Cathedral built in 1174, a fine examples of Arab/Norman architecture. The  Cathedral interior contains the largest cycle of beautiful Byzantine mosaics. Another city to be visited is Cefalù ( 70 Km from Palermo) founded in the 5th  Century B.C. by the Greeks. The historical centre - with its Cathedral built in 1131 in Norman architecture, is in a  medieval style with very  narrow roads . Going south you will arrive at the archaeological site of Segesta ( city founded by the Greek on 4th  Century B.C.) with an interesting Greek Temple and Greek Theatre.  From Segesta you can easily arrive at Selinunte another archaeological site . Selinunte was founded in the 7th Century B.C. and  site was  composed of five temples. Today all that remains to be seen is an impressive mass of ruins. From Selinunte you will take the direction to Agrigento  to see “the Valley of Temples” – Unesco World Heritage site - that is still today the most sublime evidence of the Greek civilization in Sicily. Among the various Temples the one called “Tempio della Concordia” ( Peace/Harmony Temple) is the only one still stands almost intact  (it was built in 430 B.C.). From Agrigento you will go to the city of Piazza Armerina where you can visit a Roman Villa built in 4th Century A.D.  The Villa called “Villa del Casale” – Unesco World Heritage site - contains the richest, largest and best preserved collection of Roman Mosaics in the world .  From Piazza Armerina you can move to Ragusa and visit the old upper  city called Ragusa Ibla”, ancient city built in Baroque style. Another  city where we can admire the Baroque style is the city of  Noto with its famous Cathedral; both Ragusa Ibla , Noto and others six towns in South-Eastern Sicily are - Unesco World Heritage site - for Baroque Style. From Noto you can reach the city of Syracuse – Unesco World Heritage site - Here too we can find traces of Greek, Roman, Byzantine and Baroque architecture. You can visit the Greek Theatre , The Temple of Apollo and the Ear of Dionysius in a stone quarry and you can take a walk around the old city ( called Ortigia) with numerous historical landmarks e.g. the Cathedral.  After Syracuse you can go to   Taormina with its famous Greek Theatre, still in use, overlooking the fantastic blue sea.  From here you can go for a short tour to the slopes of the Etna volcano which is still active to this day. At night it is very interesting to see the flow of the  lava.

I haven’t mentioned the beauty of  nature,  the gorgeous  coasts and sand beaches and small islands but … Sicily is all of this and much more too.


Eolie IslandsPalermo – The CathedralMonreale’s Dome – Mosaics

 CefaluSegesta – The Greek TempleSelinunte – The Greek TempleSan Vito Lo Capo -  Zingaro Natural Reserve

 Agrigento Temple’ Valley – Tempio della ConcordiaPiazza Armerina –Villa del Casale – MosaicsRagusa Ibla

 Siracusa – Greek TheatreSiracusa – Dionisio’ earTaormina – Greek Theatre

 Etna Eruption


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