Even though it’s a tough decision, I’ve chosen my 5 favourite and essential places to visit in Sicily!
The list should have been much longer, because this beautiful island is packed with wonderful places to visit. But if you are planning your first visit to Sicily, hopefully my list will help you find the things you absolutely must see at least once in your lifetime!
Let’s start with Palermo, Sicily’s administrative centre. The city which is directly located by the sea, was in the past de capital city of the Kingdom of two Sicilies and used to house kings and noble families.
Palermo definitely deserves a long visit since the city is full of treasures and has a rich historical heritage.
While in Palermo do not miss the Cathedral, the Palace of the Normans with its Cappella Palatina, a beautiful example of the so-called Arab-Norman-Byzantine style, the Martorana Church, and the numerous noble residences.
If you love the sea, then check out Mondello. On a sunny day you can have a bath in the sea, even in winter!
Palermo is also known for its delicious food. Drop the diet for a few days and try the Pani ca meusa (i.e. soft bread stuffed with chopped veal’s lung and spleen), Panelle (Sicilian fritters made from gram flour), Crocché (Sicilian fritters made with potatoes), Grancine (stuffed rice balls, coated with breadcrumbs, and then fried), Sfincione (a typical Sicilian pizza) and much more!
Mount Etna is the biggest volcano in Europe and is located in the province of Catania. Etna is still active and pretty spectacular thanks to its frequent lava flows. The top is covered with snow for most of the year and is constantly surrounded in fog cloud which reminds visitors that the volcano is always active!
An excursion to Etna is absolutely mandatory if you are in Sicily for the first time: you will be mind-blown by the unusual landscape. While walking through lava rivers and black rocks, you’ll encounter green expanses with flowers and lawns. If you are lucky enough you will be able to see lava eruptions at night!
Lampedusa and Isola del Coniglio
Lampedusa is considered one the most beautiful place in Europe by many tourists. This little island located in the middle of the Mediterranean sea not far from the African coast, is a little spot of unspoiled nature which can be compared to well known Polynesian and Mauritius islands.
The most popular beach in Lampedusa is the Isola dei conigli in the north eastern part of the island. Also Linosa worth a visit – it’s less known, but not less beautiful!
Valley of the temples – Agrigento
Another unmissable destination in Sicily is the Valley of the temples in Agrigento, home to one of the most famous testimonies of Greek culture with its 10 temples, 3 sanctuary and one necropolis.
Useful tips for when you visit Sicily
- The best time of year to visit Sicily is between April and June!
- How to reach the island by ferry: – http://www.traghettiper-sicilia.it/en/
- Tourist information in English: – http://pti.regione.sicilia.it/portal/page/portal/SIT_PORTALE/SIT_EnglishVersion