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Sicily from North to South: a voyage through history and legend
From the intoxicating aroma of citrus fruits to the unmistakable colors of the Mediterranean landscape; from the authentic taste of the best traditional dishes to the environment that inspired famous works: visit Sicily and let yourself be seduced by the charm of ancient Trinacria.
The island has always been among the most desirable destinations because of its beaches, honored once again this year by the FEE (Foundation for Environmental Education) with 4 Blue Flags awarded to Menfi, Lipari, Ispica and Ragusa.
On the northern coast, where the Ionian Sea meets the Tyrrhenian, the most striking area is Capo Peloro, the mythical dwelling of the sea monster Charybdis "she who sucks you in", which, together with Scylla "she who devours you" was a danger to all the sailors who crossed the strait of Messina. Both creatures are mentioned by Homer in the Iliad and the Odyssey, by Virgil in the Aeneid and Apollonius of Rhodes in the myth of the Argonauts.
A visit to Capo d'Orlando, along the Costa Saracena, is not to be missed. It was founded, according to legend, by the son of Aeolus and the place that inspired Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa's "The Leopard".
Moving to the Province of Trapani, Scopello is a must-see, a fishing village historically known for the abundance of tuna in the sea there and still famous today for its wealth of, among other things, fish, red algae, stony corals and anemones. An absolute must is the Riserva Naturale dello Zingaro, a protected area that can only be visited on foot, by walking between dwarf palms, maritime pines and ceratonias kissed by the sun, in search of Bonelli's Eagle.
Let San Vito lo Capo win you over, famous all over the Mediterranean for its crystal-clear sea, seabed of shell fragments and the delicate perfume of bougainvillea and jasmine, which mingle with the delicious aroma of couscous. If you're planning your trip to Sicily at the end of September, don't lose the Cous Cous Fest for unforgettable tastings and a fun party atmosphere.
Along the southern coast, an obligatory stop is Sciacca with the Sovareto and Timpi Russi beaches. In the surrounding area don't miss out on the "Castello incantato", or "enchanted castle", a stretch of land that is rich in olive trees and that has become a veritable open-air museum thanks to the artist Bentivegna, who has carved a hundred faces into the rock or the bark of the trees. In the sea just off the Agrigento coast Empedocles, an underwater volcano, was discovered. Its most notable manifestation is Ferdinandea Island (also known as "Graham Island"), which emerged from the sea in front of Sciacca in 1831 and then sank a few months later.
On the Ionian coast stands Taormina, a famous natural terrace, appreciated worldwide for its enchanting Isola Bella. Together with Giardini Naxos, these are the two most fascinating Sicilian locations on the Ionian Sea. Once you've arrived in Acireale, you have to try a delicious granita. Classics are almond, coffee, mulberry, Bronte pistachio or lemon and will surely be accompanied by the exquisite Sicilian brioche 'with the 'hat'. You will also find it interesting to know that, in the summer, the whole valley of Acireale, which is also known as "Riviera dei Limoni" or "the lemon riviera", is flooded with the pleasant scent of orange blossoms. If you set your sights on the North West, you will feel the pull of the giant Etna, "a pillar of the sky" according to Pindar and "the monster with its necklace of volcanoes" according to Maupassant.
But Sicily is also fascinating for more than thirty other islands that are well worth a visit: the black of lava stone, the white of dolomite or the yellow of tuff and limestone. Organize a tour to discover the Pelagie Islands, visit "the black island" Linosa, so named for its volcanic origins; the uninhabited Lampione and the enchanting Lampedusa. Head off to the Egadi Islands and admire the barren Levanzo, the extraordinary Favignana, Marettimo and the small islands of Formica and Maraone.The whole of Sicily is a wealth of places and natural beauty that are overflowing with stories to tell, that frame this warm and welcoming land of sun.
What are you waiting for? Fly to Sicily with Alitalia and choose one of our flights to Trapani, Palermo, Catania, Pantelleria or Lampedusa.