» Italy, Sicily: Erice – On the Top of Mythical Mountain of Eryx
Italy, Sicily: Erice – On the Top of Mythical Mountain of Eryx
Sicily is the largest Mediterranean island, with an area of 25,426 km² occupying 8.4% of Italy. It is about 3 times smaller than the Czech Republic. The way here is very easy. Probably every second airline flies here.
Our first trip from the airport is to the city of Trapani, which lies on the west coast of Sicily and its important place is the port. And it really lives in it, fishermen offer their catches, people come here to buy various fruits, vegetables, or even various electronics and other small items. All this can be bought here. Some come here to just talk and enjoy the different catches. The people on that side are nice and friendly. We will buy something here too and go to Eric.
Erice is a small medieval town, also located on the west side of Sicily, a few kilometers north of Trapani. It is located 751 meters above sea level on a hill, which is surrounded on all sides by a lowland. The views here are really beautiful. In addition to views of the traditional Sicilian landscape and the shores, we also see the distant Egadi Islands. This city is said to be one of the oldest in Sicily, as evidenced not only by the preserved fortifications from the period of the famous ancient Carthage, but also by the typical local atmosphere, which consists of narrow streets with traditional stone paving. The gateway to the city is Porta Trapani and next door is the Gothic church Chiesa Matrice. Everything here is terribly charming. We intertwine in all possible and impossible alleys. We peek into all corners, we love and overall we enjoy the local atmosphere. It's incredibly clean everywhere. You can buy a sweet delicacy on every corner, because this place is famous for its traditional sweet pastries.
We are fascinated by how such a small town perched high on a hill is full of fragrant cafes, restaurants and shops with local creations. We come to Piazza San Giovanni, where there are perhaps the most beautiful views. On one side we see the Quartiere Spagnolo and on the other side the castle of Torreta Pepoli and Castello di Venere. Castello di Verde also has the Giardino di Ballo public gardens, which are well worth a visit. There is a gentleman with an accordion on the street, who we really enjoy. He has a very ornate carriage with a horse and sings. His horse, which is wearing all sorts of jingles, bounces and stomps into the rhythm. And as it jumps, the whole jingle rings, rings and completes the great atmosphere of this city.
You will fall in love with Erice, there is something for everyone. Historical monuments, cafes, restaurants and last but not least, famous views of the surrounding area.
GPS: 38°02'08.2"N 12°35'30.6"E
Text and photos: Kateřina Janovská
The second largest town on Sicily is situated on the slopes of Europe’s highest active volcano, Mount Etna. You can get to Sicily by plane easily. Count with a transfer in Rome or Naples. Perhaps you will be lucky and find a cheap direct flight. Buses ride from the airport to the city center. However, mind that locals don’t know much English. Therefore, take a dictionary with you. And be careful when arriving at night. In the district next to the city center there are high rates of criminality. They will warn you about this at your hotel.
There are up to twenty thousand ghost towns all over Italy, yes, it's an incredible number. It is due to frequent earthquakes and landslides, and thus unsatisfactory conditions for agriculture and life. Today we will visit the most famous depopulated cities and learn about their past and present.
San Vito Lo Capo is located on a narrow promontory of the northwestern part of the island. And for many people, it meets all the conditions for a great day. It is located about 55 km from Palermo and is adjacent to the Zingaro Nature Reserve. This place offers beautiful white sand beaches, crystal clear waters and magnificent views of the Monte Monaco mountains.
After the first day in Sicily, we decided to exchange walks through the city for a day of climbing a hill overlooking. Since we were moving near Monte Cofano, which is located in the reserve Riserva Naturale Orientata Monte Cofano, we were quite clear.
West Sardinia is completely different from other parts. It is not mountainous, but it is rough, windy, wooded, almost flat and was a pleasant surprise for us at the end. I suddenly feel like I'm on another island, in another country.
Are you planning a vacation and don't just want to roll on the beach? How about a little adventure on volcanic islands? Panarea and Stromboli belong with other islands under the Aeolian Islands. They are also known as the Aeolian Islands and are located in the Tyrrhenian Sea. It is located on the northern coast of Sicily in the active volcanic zone between Mount Vesuvius and Mount Etna. These are actually the tops of volcanoes protruding above sea level. They are part of the Italian province of Messina, which belongs to the Autonomous Community of Sicily.
The capital of the autonomous region of Sicily and Italia's fifth largest city- Palermo is situated in the north of the island. Everyone who likes history, architecture, and great cuisine would love it here. The city was founded in the 8th century BCE. Its strategic location made in an important trade and political center. For hundreds of years the city was under the rule of the Arabs and you can still notice their influence on city's architecture, or even cuisine today.
Traveling during the corona crisis brings with it considerable positives. One of them is that the number of tourists has been reduced to a minimum, so you can be completely alone on some beaches. We did it too. Let's take a look today at the northwest of the island, which offers beautiful beaches, diverse nature and true tranquility.
From continental Italy, we will head to Sicily, a lively and noisy island, where you can hear the salesmen in the markets screaming that their tomatoes are the best ones. On the streets you will hear the locals loudly talking about everything. Even if you have some basics in Italian, it is possible that you often do not understand the local because Sicily speaks with its own dialect.
Cefalu, a home to 14 thousand, is located in the beautiful locality on Sicily's northern coast. The town is adorned by a small, cozy fishing harbor. It small historic center features narrow streets with a huge Norman cathedral in them. Close to the center, there is a sand beach.
This year did not want to travel much, but we still found tickets to a place we have been planning to see for a long time. The aim of this year's holiday was a diverse Sardinia. Within 14 days we had the opportunity to cross the island from the south through the mountains inland to the east, then north and northwest. Our journey begins in Cagliari, from where we then move east to the island.
More than two thirds of Sardinia are covered by mountains. They do not reach dizzying heights, but you will find beautiful and unspoiled nature. It is therefore not surprising that this island is a popular outdoor Mediterranean destination with interesting treks. If there is a place in Sardinia where it will feel completely small, it is the Su Gorropu canyon. The rock sides of the gorge rise to a height of 500 meters, making it the deepest gorge in Europe.
Whenever we go on vacation, one of the first things we look for is the highest mountain on the island. It is already our tradition to try to look at the highest point of the area. It will not be different today. We set off to the highest mountain in Sardinia, which is Punta la Marmora with a height of 1,834 m above sea level.
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