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The little known Aeolian Islands just of the northern coast of Sicily are an undiscovered delight, particularly if you're looking for peace and quiet surrounded by the pleasures of nature. Book online car hire Sicily The sea is deep blue, warm and clear, ideal for underwater swimming and fishing, accompanied by flying-fish, swordfish, turtles, sea-horses and hammerfish. Book online car hire Sicily. The islands are bathed in a limpid clear light, setting off the black volcanic pumice stone. Places of interest in Sciacca Vines are cultivated on the coastal strips and around the towns. Piazza Armerina Agriturismo On the island of Vulcano bathe in its warm sea-water, heated by underground volcanic springs. Book online car hire Sicily. The active volcano on Stromboli offers a spectacular opportunity to observe lava flows and frequent noisy minor eruptions. Booking Hotels Enna Book online car hire Sicily

Book online car hire Sicily Among the areas not to be missed are Agrigento (to see the Valley of the Temples); Acireale (to see puppets); Taormina (a unique beautiful town perched on cliffs overlooking the Mediterranean); and Mt. Etna (10 902 ft/3 323 m) an active volcano on the east coast—its crater is difficult to reach so bring a guide and dress warmly. Trapani Hotels In April 1987 two people were killed when Mt. Etna erupted. Although it can erupt at any time — most recently in January 1992 — deadly incidents aren’t common. Book online car hire Sicily. There’s good winter skiing with great ocean views from the mountain; drive the 120 mi/200 km around its base to see a wide variety of scenery. Enna Hotels Among the ancient Greek and Roman ruins on the island are the Taormina Greek theatre and San Domenico Monastery near Messina the Greek theater. Cefalu Agriturismo In Syracuse the 5th-century BC Temple of Concord in Agrigento and the Casale Armerina (a jewel of a Roman villa with wonderful mosaics) in the town of Piazza Armerina near Enna. Book online car hire Sicily. It’s also possible to visit the Pantelleria Islands, the Pelagian Islands and the Aeolian Islands from Sicily. Discount accommodation Licata There’s enough there to keep one busy for eight days.  

As elsewhere in the Roman Empire, the Romans were replaced by the Vandals and the Ostrogoths, who demolished far more than they built (one rare example is the villa of Piazza Armerina) and were swept away by the Byzantines. Tourist attractions in Capo D Orlando The Arabs who followed them moved the capitol from Siracusa to Palermo, renamed most of the existing towns, and planted the first carobs, date-palms, citrus trees, jasmines and melons. Book online car hire Sicily. The Normans took over in 1061. Book online car hire Sicily They tore down almost all signs of Arab culture. Self catering accommodation Palermo They brought the island to a new level of prosperity and planted a different kind of seed, still visible today in the blonde and red tresses of many Sicilians. Book online car hire Sicily. It is to the Normans that we owe the most spectacular of Sicily's architectural treasures. Ragusa Accomodation From the cathedrals of Cefalů, Messina and Monreale to Palermo's Zisa and Cuba, the churches of San Giovanni degli Eremiti, San Cataldo and the Martorana. Under the realm of Frederick II, the Swabian king, Sicily became one of the centers of the Western world, and perhaps it is not surprising that the principal architectural endeavors of this era. These lasted only from 1220 to 1250, were of a military nature, such as the castles in Siracusa, Catania and Salemi. Book online car hire Sicily. When Frederick died in 1250, his successor Manfred was murdered by the ruthless Charles of Anjou, whose French allies streamed into the island and established a new aristocracy so despised that it led to the popular uprising called the Sicilian Vespers. Discount hotels Giardini Naxos Eventually, in 1302, the French gave way to the Aragonese (part of the same dynasty which sponsored Christopher Columbus), who dominated until 1734. Book online car hire Sicily. The aristocracy created during this realm left their magnificent homes, such as Palermo's Palazzo Sclafani and Palazzo Chiaramonte, scattered all over the island. Places of interest in Milazzo The Aragonese clergy, while wielding the heavy arm of the Inquisition, effectively conspired to keep almost all artistic traces of the Renaissance out of the island.

Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean and occupies a strategic position at the toe of Italy. Book online car hire Sicily The island has long been a magnet for invaders - all of whom have left their mark. Last minute accommodation Sant Agata Militello Greek temples, Roman ruins, Norman castles and Byzantine domes. Book online car hire Sicily. Visiting these relics of the past, swimming off the island’s beautiful golden beaches, marvelling at Mt Etna – Europe’s largest live volcano – and sampling first-rate seafood are all part of the Sicilian experience. Book online car hire Sicily. City of Catania. Self catering accommodation Licata Situated at the mountain slope of Etna and to the center of a fertile lowland cultivated to citrus fruit, it was occupied from the Cartaginesi versus 700 B.C. Diving Centres Dive Sites and Schools Caltanissetta Then it was under the dominion of Siracusa and conquered from Dionigi and from the Cartaginesi then, finally by the Romans in the 263 B.C. Tourist Information office centre Sciacca Subsequently conquered from the Normanni was destroyed in 1693 from a terrible earthquake. Book online car hire Sicily. We find it again today, like commercial heart of the Isle with its splendid and attractive baroque.

Book online car hire Sicily