Couple of years ago I was planning to go and visit the largest island of the Mediterranean Sea. I wasn’t lucky, but third time and I am in Sicily.
The flight to Catania, then a bus, and for about a one hour and we are in Syracuse.
Syracuse is located on the eastern part of the island to the Ionian Sea. Medium-sized city that can be a walk up and down or on a bike which I recommend especially if you go during the summer.
Romantic white Syracuse delight us at first sight. It is under the protection of UNESCO. Bridges is related to Ortygia island, the historical center of Syracuse. White marble, narrow streets, street musicians, and the best pizza on the corner.
If you like ice cream then this is Mecca and Medina for you. In Italy it is always a good ice cream anywhere to eat, but the best is in Sicily. My choice was coffee and pistachio, almost beat all the other flavors. Whichever you choose you will not make a mistake.
We are not liked the beach, most of them are rocky, small and crowded but the next day we go to Palermo, there are a paradise beach.
Bus and for three hours we are in Palermo. The transportation is well organized: go across the island, the highway is mostly over fields and meadows on the pillars, is not flat and like a runway, almost like us, there is no big difference.
When I was preparing for this trip, I know that Palermo is different from all the other cities on the island. Basically you can read that he was not sure, and I get that impression when we arrived.
We are located near the bus station in the historic center of the city and, following the map on the phone, we quickly came to him, however, the end of the street through which we passed is not instilled security.
The streets are narrow enough so that one person can barely comfortable to walk, ruined facades of houses and buildings and a lot of immigrants of Arab and African Americans … I have to admit, I was not indifferent.
The city is the full of contrasts, not very clean and wild, but this is a city that has a soul, where people are friendly and kind, stop you in the street to ask you something and talk with you. Locals will always suggest that you do what to see they recognize that you are a tourist, so you do not accidentally miss to visit some of the places that they feel that they have to be seen.
We were lucky to be there when the center of the street where the “Massimo” theater food and beer festival. We tried a lot of homemade beer, I must admit that I was none too thrilled, but because of the seafood at one of the food stalls were just what I like.
The streets are full of the evening, in every corner you can meet people who play and perform different performance.
Palermo center is a crossroads of Quatro Canti, the intersection Via Roma and Via Vittorio Emanuele, and which divides the city into four sections. On any of the four sides to make, all you have to see: down you go towards the sea and the harbor, right to the part of town where the bus station, left to “Massimo” theater, and up to Norman or the Royal Palace and the main cathedral. And when you get tired, I recommend the cannoli or ice cream.
We were placed next to the Balara market that is spread throughout the neighborhood. You will enjoy the colors, scents, various fruits and vegetables. Balara market is really huge and winds through narrow streets and small squares so it is interesting to explore what’s around the next corner.
Above Palermo, on the hill, is the town of Monreale. Public transport go, even though the distance of seven kilometers from Palermo, the trip takes about an hour. Traffic jams are terrible in Palermo.
The bus driver was so happy and in the mood greeted with every passenger who enters the bus (it seems to us that it is a local from Monreale) with respect to the every corner slowed to greet people on the street.
When we arrived at the destination, he approached us and wrote a timetable when the bus is moving towards Palermo you do not have to wait but that we can get the weather to return.
We were greeted by a beautiful view of Palermo and the Cathedral which is on the UNESCO list of protected world heritage.
It was almost noon, so we walked the streets, took pictures and raided the arancini in a local cafe.
Arancini are fried balls of rice, like croquettes, which are prepared in different ways, with sauce and peas, tomato sauce, mozzarella, spinach or mushrooms. Whichever combination you decide that you will not go wrong.
The food in Sicily should be a separate article to prepare, so there’s recommendation to try.
Practice delectable breakfast is granita. To me, it’s not compatible but granita is for recommendation. Namely, it is blended fruit, sugar and ice.
There are different flavors, most are eaten with almonds (almonds I do not like it, but because Strawberry was excellent), cut fresh bun which is called brioche and put granite or brioche soaked in granite.
Dinner late at night, I guess because of the heat that prevails during the day. They eat in large groups, gather family and friends and with food has always represented a good wine and a great amount of laughter and noise.
We tried pasta Norma, which originates from the island, is made from tomatoes, fried eggplant, cheese and basil. Is it to the environment where we ate or to the fresh ingredients they put into it, but we really enjoyed.
After tour of the city, finally came to the beach. To the beach, take the city bus 806, takes about 30 min drive to Mondello.
Mondello, Palermo and all the cities that are on the northern side of the island out of the Tyrrhenian sea. Although the beach town, can be very crowded, white sand and clear clean water. With clear blue skies enjoyment was the maximum.
If you love shopping, going from the bus station and a tram at the last stop of a great shopping center with a good selection of clothes and shoes, and prices are more than acceptable and reasonable.
While driving to the mall, going through the part of the city which is totally different from the rest, like the Belgrade blocks as the Palermo and is not very common.
The next day we went to Cefalu. Train can be reached in about an hour. Beautiful tourist town that has everything you need for relaxation and enjoyment.
Two sandy town beach, the old town with luscious small shops, cafes and restaurants. Above the town rises a huge mountain and there are trails to climb up the mountain and if you climb up, you can be served on the city of palm.
Train is also easy access to Taormina. Train station is down on the beach in Giardini Naxos, given that Taormina on a hill, you can count on it that you need to city by bus or taxi.
Taormina is a real beauty, old lady. It was mesmerizing, almost surreal and magical. Her charm already in the first run through of curves that are close to the edge of the wall, while watching the sea below you.
This city lives and both day and night. Very lively and with all parties and different languages … all in motion and it’s all very nice and interesting. And if the sky is clear, Etna will be displayed in its full beauty.
How much I was impressed by the city and the atmosphere, so I was disappointed by the beach. By the city beach can be reached by bus or cable car. However, on the beach if you wait unbearable crowd, and little room for rest.
We separated and went to a part of the beach where the exorbitant pay chairs and umbrellas, but when we wanted to take a bath and get into the water that was not possible because jellyfish invaded the entire beach.
The next day we went to the beach in Letojanni. This is a large sandy beach, more for families and children, but not that we did not have much luck because the water was cold.
All in all, a must see city, or just passing through per day, given that there are almost twice more expensive than the rest of the island because it is considered “fashionable” resort.
At the end we arrived in Catania. There is close to Mount Etna, the city is built of volcanic stone, and for me he is a black city. The volcano is active and therefore there earthquakes and tremors common. At every step Catania generously offers historical and art. Town is OK to walk, but this city to me did not leave any impression.
We could skip it, we would not miss anything. However, as we fly from Catania, we have selected the last day to visit him.
From Sicily we returned tired because we all wanted to see, or enjoying the ride aimlessly round the town and that you find on the road is a beautiful experience.
I’m sad because I didn’t saw San Vito Lo Capo and the southern part of the island. However, the sense of fulfillment of all the senses that provides Sicily gives me hope that we will see you again, soon, I hope.
By: Ivana Kovačević