Sicily is a gorgeous island that’s an autonomous Italian region located in the Mediterranean Sea. Its capital city is Palermo, and it is home to the one of the tallest active volcanoes in all of Europe, Mount Etna. While is is a part of Italy, is has a rich culture of its own including incredible food, music, literature, art, and architecture. You could spend weeks visiting Sicily without setting food in the “boot” of Italy. Here are some wonderful places you must visit when planning a trip to Sicily.
Palermo is the capital of Sicily that has been around for over 2700 years and is located in the northwestern part of the island. Some notable palaces and museums include the Palazzo dei Normanni, Zisa and Cuba, Palazzo Natoli, Palazzo Chiaramonte, Palazzo Abatellis, and Antonio Salias Regional Archaeological Museum. Famous churches here include the Palermo Cathedral, Cappella Palatina, San Giovanni dei Lebbrosi, San Giovanni degli Eremiti, Chiesa della Martorana, San Cataldo, and Santa Caterina. Additionally, you can also visit the Quattro Canti, Piazza Pretoria, and Piazza Bologni, where you’ll see the monument to Charles V. Many of these locations have been designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites as well.
Taormina is located on the Ionian Sea, which makes it a very popular tourist destination. You can visit the Isola Bella, which is a nature reserve, and Cape Pelorus. For history buffs, the 13th Palazzo Corvaja and Greek theatre Taormina will be of interest. Other attractions include the Corso Umberto, Villa Comunale, and Piazza IX Aprile.
Located in the Province of Trapani, Marsala is a town that’s best known for the wine that bears its name. While there, you should visist the Church of Purgatorio, Marsala Cathedral, and the Domus of Boeo. You can also see the Venus of Lilybaeum. If you are outdoorsy, you can also visit the Stagnone Lagoon Natural Reserve where you can see salt ponds. It’s also known for being the docking town of Giuseppe Garibaldi on the Expedition of the Thousand in May 1860.
Trapani is located on the western coast of Sicily and is the capital of the Province of Trapani. The fishing town can be traced back to the medieval times, and most of the buildings found here are in the Baroque style. While there, you should check out the Basilica Sanctuary of Maria Santissima Annunziata, where you’ll fight a marble statue of Madonna of Trapani, as well as the Regional Museum Agostino Pepoli, which is next to the sanctuary, where you’ll find works from significant artists like Gagini, Titian, and Giacomo Balla.
Erice is a historic town that is known for its stunning castles in the sky. One is Pepoli Castle and the second is Castello di Venere, Venus Castle. You can take a cable car all the way up and enjoy the stunning views on your way. Other sights in Erice include the Cathedtral, St. Julian’s Church, and of course, the views of Monte Cofano.