If you have spoken to anyone who has travelled to Italy – and particularly, to anyone who has visited Sicily – you will know that it is a magical place to visit! This plan below will outline the perfect trip to Sicily…and if you need a guide, I’m available 😉
What does a perfect trip to Sicily look like?
You may or may not have 2 weeks for a vacation but, if you’d like to make sure you see everything, then two weeks is perfect! We never made it to Messina but, according to people I’ve spoken to (even people who live in Sicily), it’s a pretty place but if you don’t make it there, you’ll probably get the feeling of Messina in the other towns you visit (and if you love Messina, I’d be so happy if you shared your thoughts below!!).
Here are some other posts that show off the beauty of Sicily:
- Western Sicily: Pasta Sarde
- Cuccidati: A Christmas Sicilian Treat
- Zeppole Di San Giuseppe
- Pistachio Pesto
- Biancomangiare: Sicilian Almond Milk Pudding
- Genovesi Ericine Cookies
- 5 Things To Eat in Palermo
- Sicilian Pesto
The Beginning of our Perfect Trip to Sicily: Arrive in Palermo:
Day 1: Palermo!
Today was all about Palermo and the markets, Palermo opera house (Teatro Massimo), Quattro Canti square, Cattedral Di Palermo, Palazzo dei Normanni is also called Royal Palace of Palermo, Villa Tasca, and then finally dinner at a local trattoria of toast with lardo (pork fat instead of butter for bread) and black truffles and spaghetti with shaved bottarga (a local specialty!!).
Day 2: Cefalu
This morning, after a good breakfast, we took a drive to Cefalu, considered one of Italy’s finest resort towns. We spent a leisurely day (visit the beach if you like) and, after lunch, visited the town to see the stunning cathedral in Cefalu (Duomo Cefalu).
On the way back, we stopped in Bagheria to have dinner at I PUPI …recommended and was a fabulous meal (I would recommend the tasting menu).
Day 3: Trapeni
Today we drove to Trapeni. Perched on the northern end of Sicily’s less-travelled western coast, Trapani has an old-world Mediterranean soul. On our way to Trapeni, we visited the Temple in Segesta, in Calatafimi, which is an amazingly preserved Doric temple and was abandoned before it was ever completed (read more about it here).
Drove to Trapeni and checked into Rooms of Andrea (we lucked out and got upgraded – our room was OUTRAGEOUS!). We walked the town , went to the pier and went to find some info on Garibaldi in town. Dinner at Ai Lumi ( a quaint place we stumbled upon – a trattoria tipica!).
Day 4: Aegadian Islands
We drove to the port and took a boat to the Aegadian islands – Favignana (you can see all the defunct tuna factories which were once thriving but now are empty due to over-fishing) and then we went inland for lunch. Afterwards, we visited Levanzo (you can try to do Marettimo as well but I think will be tight). Make sure you have your swim suit on …
Il brucaliffo for dinner…really good local trattoria!!
Day 5: Erice and Marsala
In the morning, we drove to Erice, a well preserved medieval town offering breathtaking views and a fascinating history. We had a ‘sfinchionello’ (the town’s take on sfinchione which is a tomato pizza with breadcrumbs and onions) – this one was a sandwich with all the same ingredients.
If you can, try to find the “salt chapel”, A chapel built by miners in the salt caverns so they could pray for safety while they worked. There isn’t a lot of information about it, but I found out that it is open one day each month (we never made it).
Day 6: Agrigento and Sciacca
This day, we drove towards Agrigento/Sciacca where we checked into Verdura Resort and spent a beach day (finally!!). Our trips are always busy so it’s nice to have a day to relax and enjoy all that the hotel has to offer (which is a lot!!!).
Day 7: Caltebellotta and Central Sicily
We had a great breakfast at the hotel (best spread I’ve seen…see below for all the details!!) and then went for a hike to visit Caltabellotta and enjoy the view. When you walk down visit the old Cathedral of Caltabellotta then go for lunch at Mates Restaurant if your timing is right (but we were there too early…next time!!).
In the afternoon, we drove towards the centre of Sicily and checked into Susafa, one of the agritourism spots we stayed at (quite a drive but such a pleasure to see Sicily’s inland). We had a late afternoon wine tasting with Bruno, the house dog, and then a fabulous dinner at the hotel.
Day 8: Susafa and Noto
Spent the morning at Susafa and took a cooking class where we learned to make caponata but with apples instead of eggplant (so good) and fried dough to sop up the sauce!!
Then we checked out and, on our way to Noto, we stopped at an autogrill, an Italian highway rest stop known for great “on-the-go” food!!
Once we got to Noto, we checked into Seven Rooms Villa Dorata, which occupies a wing of the 18th-century Nicolaci Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We didn’t have that much time but I did manage to go visit Cafe Sicilia (made famous by it’s popular Netflix show).
Day 9: More Noto!
Spent the day in Noto just exploring and walking the town and seeing all of the churches! We went to visit the fortress (Castello di Noto or Castello Reale). After a leisurely day, we had a wonderful dinner at Crocifisso.
Day 10: Siracusa/Ortigia
Spent the day on Ortigia Island in Siracusa. Had a nice walk of the town and visited the main square and walked the market. Went to visit the fortress (Castello Maniace) and then had a craving for a simple dinner so we asked a girl at our hotel where she eats and she led us to Geranio where we had a wonderful homemade pasta pizza and fresh fish!!
Day 11: Modica
We spent the day in lovely Modica which is the chocolate capital of Italy! The place for chocolate you must go to is called Bonajuto – you must go here to taste the unique chocolate that is made specifically in this town (and have a cannolo too!!!). You also need to take a leisurely walk through the town of Modica…it is so pretty!
Later that night, we had dinner at Manna! Probably one of the most “Arabic influenced” restaurants we had tried (lots of the food in Sicily had influence from other parts of the world – more than most parts of Italy – and you can always see it in the food)! recommended by a friend and super delicious!
Day 12: Etna and an Agrotourismo
Drive towards Etna and check in at Monaci delle Terre Nere (our final hotel and a wonderful agritourismo). We relaxed at the hotel (and had to see all the gardens and chickens!!), did a cooking class at the hotel and ate lunch on the terrace. Afterwards, we went for a late afternoon visit to the town of Taormina. We walked the city and went to visit the Four Seasons Hotel (because I used to work for the Four Seasons and that’s where they filmed White Lotus – we had to have an aperitif there!!).
Day 13: Climbing Etna
On our last day, we experienced the hike on Etna Volcano. I would definitely recommend a good guide because they know their way around and will make sure you stay safe. We also found that they know the area and will bring you to special places (we went to local shops and tried seasonal volcanic honey, liqueurs and other delicacies). We bought cheese from a local shepherd and then on our way back to the hotel, we stopped to have brioche and gelato and then picked up cheese, meats and bread for a snack back at the hotel!!
Day 14: Arrivederci Sicily!!
We departed from Catania airport back to Toronto – with full bellies and lots of memories!!
- This was the trip that we planned with the help of a friend who lives in Sicily and around our timeline (we had two weeks). You can have a spectacular trip with less time …I just wanted to document it all so you have a list of places to go if you happen to be in a town and want to explore!!
- If you would like to see all of the videos I took on this trip, I have saved them all in my highlights on my Instagram page (https://www.instagram.com/justcrumbs/)