Thursday, December 16, 2010

Top 10 Places to visit in Sicily

Visiting Sicily, the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, is said to be like visiting Europe, Africa and Asia on one island. There is no other place like it on Earth. Sicily was once a Greek colony, a Roman province, an Arab emirate and a Norman kingdom. Now it is Italian but uniquely Sicilian. The Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Swabians, Angevins, Aragonese and Jews made this unique island their own, leaving behind an eclectic history that you can still touch today. Sicily has its own rich and unique culture, especially with regard to the arts, music, literature, cuisine, architecture and language. But you really have to experience Sicily to understand it, join Celtic Tours on our Sicilian Heritage Tour.

Top 10 Places to visit in Sicily

• Aeolian Islands: Exceptional beaches and fantastic cuisine

• Agrigento:. Agrigento boasts several ancient Greek temples, including the Temple of Concord, one of only two completely standing ones in Sicily.

• Cefal├╣: Offering pleasant narrow medieval streets, interesting shops and a public beach.

• Erice: This hilltop town was successively Elymian, Phoenician, Carthaginian and Roman. Its grey stone forms Punic walls, a castle, church and medieval streets that could almost be mistaken for ancient ones.

• Mount Etna: Europe's greatest natural wonder is a living, sacred mountain of legend and myth.

• Monreale: The arcane fact that a mosaic icon of Thomas Becket graces the apse, and that it is the earliest holy image of the English saint murdered in Canterbury Cathedral, is just one of many fascinating features of this twelfth-century cathedral and cloister built on a hill in the eclectic Norman-Arab style with Byzantine artistic elements.

• Nebrodi Mountains: The Nebrodi Mountains are the most lushly forested region of Sicily. Situated to the immediate north of Etna, the range boasts some of the island's highest peaks after the volcano.

• Palermo: Sicily's regional capital and largest city is perhaps best compared to a rough, uncut jewel. Its beauty has to be revealed through careful discovery. You'll find this bustling city chaotic and dusty yet interesting. The historic environment of this former royal capital of kings and emirs is largely Baroque with some stunning nuggets of medieval architecture. .

• Piazza Armerina: The Roman villa outside town has the most extensive mosaic pavements of the ancient Roman world, composed of rural scenes, pictures of flora and fauna, and classical motifs. Most of it is in exceptional condition, looking as if it were completed yesterday. The structure was the home of a wealthy Roman who loved art.

• Segesta: The best-preserved ancient Doric temple in what used to be the Greek world. The site's ancient amphitheatre, set on a hill, boasts a magnificent position.

• Siracusa: Archimedes, Plato and Saint Paul loved Syracuse, and with good reason. It was one of the most important cities of the ancient Greek world, and the most important in Greek and Roman Sicily. It was also one of the most beautiful. The archeological park is extensive, while the old city, Ortygia, has some fascinating treasures. The columns of the ancient temple around which the cathedral was built are still visible on one side of the nave.

• Taormina: This mountaintop town overlooking the Ionian coast is Sicily's most famous resort, full of restaurants and shops, with beaches nearby. Its historical side is ubiquitous. The Greek amphitheatre, with its famous panoramic view of Mount Etna and the coast, is used for concerts and plays, and medieval walls enclose the town's stone streets. There are several castles, including those in the Castelmola overlooking Taormina.

Discover Sicily with Celtic Tours Sicilian Heritage Tour.

No comments:

Networked Blogs