An island that will leave you speechless in both ways, good and bad. But one thing is sure.. food will not let you down, never!
One week of driving around the island, catching daylight while visiting highlights, having a love affair with food on every corner, and sleeping in different towns to get that real Italian feeling.
We started in Catania and took the southeast direction, skipping Sirakuze as we were aware that there will be some victims during our trip and we decided that this will be the one.
Soon after our start, we got our first lesson, the road to Agrigento was not boring at all.. we were really excited about the scenery and with this happy mood ended up on the beach not far from Agrigento when the reality hit us. South of Sicily is covered with trash.. everywhere, on the beach, by the road on the streets. It looks like that it doesn’t bother locals at all… I guess living there gives you two options, you adapt to the situation and become one of them, or you become a grumpy citizen who runs away sooner or later.
The first two days were really bad, we just couldn’t get through the fact of what we are seeing around us. But after Trapani, when we slowly start moving towards the northern part, the situation got better. Beaches were actually clean, paths around national parks were really nice and the towns were all tidy up.
One of the best highlights is for sure Nature Reserve Zingaro together with San Vito Lo Capo. Perfect scenery with surrounding mountains, dreamy beach, and 7km long trail in national reserve which gives you everything, from history insights to beautiful walk through the park.
We saved the best for the last, Etna hike. The weather forecast was good and we had some time before our flight, so we took a road to the northern part of Etna and start walking on the ski slopes which are waiting for the snow. It is really a place worth waking up early and losing breath while walking uphill to get a better view of Etna. We didn’t plan to go to the top as we didn’t have much time, but what I saw, it was a really nice experience and would recommend it to anyone who likes to avoid huge crowds and wanna see the volcano in action (you can see some smoke coming out of the crater on the photos).
Overall Sicily was not that bad in the end, but I think we will need a really good reason to get back there in the near future. Here are a few things that can make your trip easier if you are planning to visit Sicily:
- Rent-a-car: A must thing! But when booking it, take fully covered insurance and make sure you are paying it just once (not to the agency AND rental car company). Good to know is also, that you can pay the deposit with a debit card or by cash as we had a huge issue as banks didn’t work on 1st of November at midnight to release the card block (they have a really strange system which requires a call to a bank)
- Timing: Is everything! I can’t imagine traveling around Sicily in the top season. If you would like to enjoy some peace and quiet moments (please note that you are in Italy and these are really rare moments) do visit it out of season.
- Food: Eat local! Dare to be experimental! Choose a fine mix of recommendations, TripAdvisor, Google…
Here’s the route that was done in one week: