We had been planning and dreaming about our month in Sicily for at least a year. I read every guidebook at the library and every travel blog I could find. Visa/residence paperwork delayed our arrival and forced us to change our itinerary, but we ended up with an amazing first taste of Sicily. We liked it so much we’re planning to return and spend the last two months of our time in Italy in the northwest of the island.
Our first stop was Panarea, one of the Aeolian Islands. We took an overnight ferry from Naples and watched the sun rise over an active volcanic island. Panarea is known for being the island of the rich in the famous. In the summer at least. In late September rooms were discounted, the visitors had thinned, and it was serene.
We ferried to Sicily and headed south to Taormina. The highlight here was the granita. One of the most delicious desserts EVER. Or, as Italian’s call it, breakfast.
We drove through the wine region near Mount Etna and spent more time on tiny dirt roads, looking for wineries, than actually tasting wine.
Our next stop was the middle of Sicily, miles out of our way, to see the best preserved Roman mosaics in the world. Villa Romana del Casale is from the 4th century and the mosaics lived up to the hype.
We spent a few days in Ragusa and visited Modica, Scicli, and Noto from there. This is a very magical part of Sicily, I think it’s something about the stone used to build all the towns. Also the food. And the wine. And the chocolate that Modica is famous for.
Our last days were spent in Siracusa. The old town, an island called Ortigia, is all winding lanes that spit you out at impressive sea views. It was terrible 😉