After an exhilarating holiday in Mykonos, we decided to spice it up a notch and check out Sicily. This was another first time experience for me and I was really excited as we flew to Catania.
Once we got there, we decided to go the classic- tourist way- rent a car, take a long drive up on the north coast towards Palermo or more south to discover the eastern cities of the island. If you have plenty of time, I suggest you do both. We didn’t, so we chose to head to Palermo. It is about a two and half hour drive from Catania.
Palermo is one of those old historical cities complete with small alleys, old buildings, busy traffic streets. We did some sightseeing, opera and bunch of churches included, for the pictures sake.
Then we ended up having dinner in an out- door Pizzeria in Palermo called Maergo Pizzeria, which is a must- visit for you once in Palermo .
After dinner we decided to drive west to spend the night in a city called Scopello. We spent the night in a really tiny family owned hotel, waking up to a nice relaxing countryside view from the window for a complete ‘vacation’ feel.
Going to the beach in any of the small cities west of Palermo and particularly on the north side of Sicily can be a little tricky and we were not prepared enough. So let me tell you this- most beaches take a small hike that ranges from 20- 30 min to gain access. Plus beaches are not as well equipped as most of the other, more popular Greek island spots. So, do get your own beach gear, food and drinks.
The good thing is that there are very few tourists here, so the solitude and privacy you get here make these trips really super magical.
The next morning, we left for Cefalu, another gorgeous destination in the north east part of the island.
We stayed in a beautiful bungalow by the beach, Residence Calanica. We discovered that this was a beautiful small city, with rocky beaches where the water was warm, and a lot of cliffs for taking a dive into the ocean.
The next morning, we took a road trip up to Rome, passing by Napels and the Amalfi coast and made it 14 hours. Quick tip- stretch it over 2-3 days because the route has some great scenic views and lots of different small cities and wineries on the road that are worth a stop- see. If you do decide on such a road trip, check the traffic and also the fairy schedule that takes you from Sicily to the main land. We got stuck in the traffic and waited for the fairy for 3 hours.
Sicily has every thing to offer a tourist- beaches, the city vibes, wineries and their own unique cuisine. One last tip if you are heading down here- try the Granita and Brioche and let me know what you think.