Sicily is always a tourist hot spot. From its gorgeous beaches to its excellent food to its amazing cultural opportunities, Sicily offers visitors much to see and do. All the travel guides will agree that these are some of the most popular and most interesting sites to see in Sicily. When you are ready to take the next step, view our Sicily villas and choose the one that is closer to your dreams.
Palermo is, of course, the capital of Sicily, but it is so much more than that. The city is a bustling Mediterranean centre with a population of just over one million — an Italian town that has not been remade into a tourist mecca. In other words, the menus are in Italian, not English, there are not kitschy souvenir shops around every corner (yes, you will still find some, but not many and they are fewer and further in between than in most Italian tourist cities) and much of the old parts of Palermo remain untouched, giving Palermo quite a history. Visit the city’s grand palaces and churches, like the Palatine Chapel in Palermo or the Duomo of Monreale, and marvel at the fantastic architecture and artistry of it all. Bring your camera!
Tindari is called the ‘Sanctuary of the Black Madonna’. The Black Madonna smuggled from Constantinople during the 8th century. Today, she sits upon an altar in Tindari, and you are free to visit her. You can also see where ancient Tindari stood. The original Greek walls protect this area. You will also find Roman baths in this area which feature the original floor mosaics. Also visit the Basilica, where you will see beautiful examples of Graeco-Roman architecture as well as its theatre, built in the 4th century BC. During the summer, Greek plays are put on, so make sure to get a good seat!
Lo Zingaro Nature Reserve
The Lo Zingaro nature reserve is another of the most popular tourist attractions in Sicily. It is home to both nature and beautiful sandy beaches. The beaches here are some of the most beautiful you will ever see, with their clear waters and long, sandy shores. Nature lovers will want to pack comfortable shoes because there are some hikes to enjoy. Also, the snorkelling here is said to be some of the best around, as there is plenty of colourful fish to see.
Valle Templi translated means ‘Valley of the Temples’, don’t miss when you visit Sicily. Valle Templi is home to monumental temples and its one of the most important archaeological sites in the world. The valley was once a flourishing cultural centre, and today, you can still see remnants of these amazing temples. The temples are now a Unesco World Heritage site, and it is open every day, year-round, note that there is an admission fee, and guided tours are available. When you get to Valle Templi, you will have the chance to see the Temple of Hera (Juno) and the Temple of Heracles (Hercules) as well as the remains of the Temple of Zeus (Jupiter) and the remains of the Temple of Hephaistos (Vulcano). These are all some fantastic sights to see.
Vulcano is one of the Aeolian Islands. As the name implies, Vulcano is a small volcanic island that contains many volcanic centres. These volcanic centres include one of the four active non-submarine volcanoes located in Italy. If you feel like checking out one of these volcanoes, you can hike to the top of Gran Cratere. It is a three-hour hike, though, so plan and wear your comfortable shoes. In addition to volcanoes, there are also three beautiful (and quite famous) beaches on the island. La Spiaggia Sabbia Nera is the most popular of all the beaches and tends to be the most crowded. It is perfect for both sunbathing and swimming, as the waters are calm and clear.
Mount Etna is another volcano in Sicily, and this one is active. The volcano has erupted twice in recent memory, showering the area with ash and lava. It is quite a fireworks show if you happen to be in the area, at a safe distance. Mount Etna is Sicily’s highest, and most active, volcano, but you can visit. You can hike up, or take a cable car. When you get to the top (the top, in this case, being the 2,800-meter mark), a guide will meet your group and then show you around Etna. No matter when you visit, the landscape is lovely and ever-changing.
Siracusa is a very historic city in Italy and one that should be on your itinerary if you love history. The town is one of the oldest cities in the world, founded in 734 BC–and it is a World Heritage site. Today it is a beautiful city that has some of the best examples of Baroque art and architecture that you will find in Sicily, as well as some dramatic Greek and Roman ruins. There are numerous outdoor cafes, an expansive piazza, beautiful old world boutiques, and very fresh, very delicious seafood.No matter where you travel in Sicily, there is always something to see and do. If you can, though, include these stops to make indeed it a fantastic trip!
Massimo has a carefully chosen collection of spacious villas which are perfect for family groups, each one unique in style and set up.