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Essential reads:
5 minutes guide to Sicily

A brief guide will never fully do justice to the magnificent historical heritage, diverse blend of cultures and breath-taking landscapes of Sicily – a captivating island nestled in the heart of the Mediterranean Sea.

Sicily, a microcosm of Mediterranean history, influenced by Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Greeks, Romans, Vandals, Ostrogoths, Byzantines, Fatimids, Arabs, Normans, Aragonese, and Spanish. Independent since the Kingdom of Sicily in 1130, it thrived in the Middle Ages, transitioning to Hohenstaufen rule in 1194. The War of the Sicilian Vespers (1282-1302) marked a pivotal moment against French rule. Sicily saw Spanish control, brief Savoyard and Austrian rule, and joined Italy in 1860. In the 20th century, it witnessed Allied conquest, Communist agitation, and Mafia influence, culminating in the deaths of anti-Mafia magistrates in 1992. Sicily's rich history forms a captivating tapestry of Mediterranean heritage.

Embark on your Sicilian adventure starting in Palermo, where a vibrant blend of Arab, Norman, Byzantine, and Baroque influences awaits in the historic centre. Marvel at the Norman architectural masterpiece, Palermo Cathedral, and the golden Palatine Chapel within the Palazzo dei Normanni. Immerse yourself in the lively markets of Ballarò and Vucciria, indulging in local delicacies such as arancini, panelle, and cannoli. Explore the Valley of Temples in Agrigento, home to well-preserved ancient Greek masterpieces like the Temple of Concordia and the Temple of Juno, particularly stunning at sunset. This site prompts reflection on the transient nature of life, leaving visitors in awe of the profound human experience.

Head east to Taormina, perched on a hill overlooking the Ionian Sea. Explore the ancient Greek Theatre, still hosting performances, and enjoy a leisurely stroll along Corso Umberto, lined with charming boutiques and cafes. Don't miss the picturesque Isola Bella, a tiny island nature reserve with crystal-clear waters. Conclude your Sicilian journey in captivating Syracuse, visiting the unique Ear of Dionysius and the impressive Altar of Hieron. Explore the charming Ortigia island or admire the magnificent Piazza Duomo.

Explore the marvels of Mount Etna, Europe's largest active volcano, for panoramic views of lunar-like landscapes. Alternatively, hike the breathtaking Alcantara Gorges, where volcanic rock formations and crystalline waters converge in a stunning natural spectacle. Discover the enchanting western part of Sicily, where historic marvels and natural wonders converge. Immerse yourself in the grandeur of the ancient Segesta Temple, explore the vibrant street markets of Trapani, and unwind along the pristine beaches of San Vito Lo Capo for a perfect blend of culture and coastal beauty.

Sicily is a treasure trove of cultural and sensory experiences: base yourself in one of our Sicilian accommodations and let this enchanting island captivate you with its timeless charm, warm hospitality, and the lingering allure of its historical past. Immerse yourself in its vibrant and ancient cities and savour Sicilian cuisine, creating memories that will stay with you forever.

Further Reading


Italian Culinary Symphony

Essenza's guide to gastronomic adventures and dining etiquette


Florence's "Wine Windows"

A Whimsical Tale of Tuscany's Vinous Legacy


The Enchanting Tale of Umbria's Cashmere Legacy

Cashmere, a fabric synonymous with opulence and unparalleled softness, has woven its way into the fabric of luxury fashion, and at the heart of this sartorial elegance lies the picturesque region of Umbria in central Italy.