Sicily and a Saint

Sicily is huge!  Who knew?  Maybe those who aced geography or world history. I always thought of it as a smallish island.  Not true.  We only had 4 days to explore so we chose the East side of the island.  Sicily is known for it’s beautiful beaches, but since it is the dead of winter we were advised to stay in the largest city on that side – Catania, and travel from there.  Great advice.

Catania reminded me of Napoli – big, dirty, chaotic, beautiful.  Our exploring was focused on the neighboring small towns.  Taormina is where we started by exploring a 3rd Century B.C.Greek Amphitheater overlooking the stunning waters below. It is a very well preserved theater… some say better than those in Greece, I guess we’ll have to go see for ourselves!  One of my favorite parts of Taormina was it had the best cannoli – a Sicilian treat at it’s finest!  Yummy.
The next day we spent in Syracuse and the island Ortigia.  Syracuse has another Greek Amphitheater from 5th Century B.C. and a Roman Theater built 21 B.C. right next to each other – it was pretty amazing walking the ruins.
We spent the afternoon exploring a darling little island – Ortigia. Loved it there.  I would have stayed here if I’d had known about it.  It’s quant, clean and charming.  The streets were wide, the Piazzas full of life.  It was a fun way to spend the day!
Our last day was the most adventurous.  In true King fashion, we found a festival! Here in Italy, most if not all of their festivals are related to religion. Every town has a Saint and every year on the Saint’s Birthday they throw a huge party.  According to google – we lucked out and timed our trip with the largest Saint’s day party in Sicily. This small town called…..
It was a hoot.  We spend the day chasing the Saint – being carried by people – around the town paying respects to every church in town.  There were fireworks and music along the way.  It was fun, but noisy. As I’ve said before and will say many times again, the Italians LOVE their fireworks no matter if it’s day or night!
All in all Sicily was a success. I want to return here in the summer months and do more of the beach towns on the other side of the island!
Till’ Next Time Sicily!

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