Sicilia -- Sicilian Carousel
One of the most interesting places to go whilst in Italy is Sicily. It is a truly beautiful campeggio that is different from anything found on mainland Italy. With its wild history of occupations, from the Greeks to the Romans to the Normans to the Arabs and Spanish, time has fused together bits and pieces from all these societies to form a truly unique land. Proud and beautiful the people retain characteristics from all their ancestors, and although they are sometimes stereotyped as mafiosi they have so much more to offer.
Taormina is famous for its shopping, offering everything from pret-a-porter to haute couture. The ancient city sits on top of a hill, and truly one of the most breathtaking things to do on the island is to sit in the Roman theater whose ruins frame the sea and the volcanic Mount Etna in the distance. At the bottom of the hill, reachable by cable car, there are wonderful beaches and coves that invite you to take advantage of the warm sea.
Siracusa is an ever growing cosmopolitan city 50 minutes south of Catania, reachable by bus or rail from the airport. The modern city continues to grow and expand while the ancient city, Ortigia, which sits on an island connected by bridges, stays locked in time. Right over the bridge on Via dell'Apollonion lay the ruins of a temple from the Hellenistic Age, whose builders transformed the island when they invaded. On the Passeggio Aretusa you will find the only fresh water spring outside of Egypt that grows papyrus, a beautiful spot facing the harbour and perfect for people watching. At the eastern tip of the island you'll find where all the Sicilians are hiding during the hot lunch hours. Accesible from a staircase at street level you can descend onto an outcrop of massive rocks where you'll find everyone sdraiati, taking in the sun and swimming in the waters below.
The best way to reach Sicily from mainland Italy is to book a flight at a low fare on Vola Wind Jet from Roma, Pisa, Milano, Torino, Venezia or Verona into Catania or Palermo. If you happen to be in Palermo during the last week of September be sure to stop by the International Cous Cous Festival for a tasting of the best cous cous dishes from North Africa.
For more information on Sicily and the rest of Italy check out your camera into Italy.