Here’s what I want to know:
How can one of the most unbelievably gorgeous parts of Italy also be one of the most underrated?
Sicily is a holiday destination that picky Italians and European travelers choose time and again. But it’s a region that is so often overlooked by the rest of the world.
And that’s a crime.
Because while you’re waiting in line for three hours to climb the Duomo in Florence, you could be in an equally stunning Sicilian city, and have the place almost entirely to yourself!
Also, almost everything is cheaper in Sicily — especially meals. The food is outstanding, but you’ll often pay much less for a five-course meal at a top restaurant there than you would on the mainland.
As you can tell, I adore Sicily.
I even chose it as the venue for a milestone birthday party I celebrated this year.
And after holidaying there with friends and family, I decided I had to start bringing clients to this incredible island too. I thought, “People need to see this!”
It took me a few years to build the right connections and craft the best itinerary for the perfect Sicilian tour, but now you, get to benefit from all of that hard work. (The toughest part for sure was taste-testing my way through dozens of prospective restaurants!)
Check out these photos, and you’ll understand why I’m so in love with this place!
This killer rooftop terrace in Palermo is the setting for one of my favorite meals on our tour. The sunset will take your breath away if the delicious food hasn’t already!
Palermo is a wild city. It’s 2700 years old! Settled by the Phoenicians and once part of the Byzantine empire, its layered history has made it a mosaic of influences. In fact, the markets here look more like the Souks in Marrakech than any market you’ll find in Milan.
We visit one of them where we partake in a very unfancy but very delicious meal — this is “down home” Sicily, the real deal, and we’re always the only English speakers there. (Our guide is fluent in Sicilian plus another six languages, though, so we’re in good hands!)
The people-watching here is EPIC.
After a few nights in lively Palermo we head to one of my favorite places in the whole word — the Aeolian Islands. If you’re like, “Aolio whaaaat?” — it’s all good! I’ll explain.
The Aeolian Islands are a volcanic archipelago off the northern coast of Sicily. There’s a real Greek vibe happening here, and it’s no wonder. The islands were named for Aeolus, god of the winds, by Greek settlers.
We get to stay on one of these jaw-dropping islands — Salina — for four nights. There is nothing like floating in this pool under the hot Sicilian sun and staring up at the surrounding mountains and endless sky… except maybe floating in the silkiest Sicilian almond milk in a copper tub at our hotel’s spa.
These are the islands after all, so of course we take advantage of that with a sweet cruise on our private boat. Check out the dolphins who came to frolic alongside us last year in this video.
It goes without saying that we eat some pretty epic meals on Salina at tables with some pretty outstanding views. Just outside the frame in the photo below is a smoking volcano whose firework sparks you can see when the sun goes down. I mean, how often do you have an active volcano as the backdrop to your meal?
We hate to tear ourselves away from Salina, but our next stop, Taormina, is Old World sophistication straight out of a Sofia Loren movie. If ever there was a setting that called up fantasy scenarios featuring classic Fiat 500s and mysterious dark-haired charmers, this is it.
Taormina lets you step right into the relaxed groove that is the Sicilian lifestyle and forget all about the real world. It’s just you, your group of fun, laid-back friends, and an old-school version of il bel paese that people will try to tell you no longer exists.
Cobblestoned piazzas, mouthwatering pizzas and views that go on forever — you’ve got Sicily coursing through your veins now. You’re walking on roads traveled by Roman emperors and Greek soldiers, but it feels so normal, ‘cause you’re in a Sicilian frame of mind.
In Sicily, one day you’re exploring a Greek amphitheater and the next you’re scoring a pair of Gucci glasses on sale (the Italian ladies have inspired you!).
But you don’t really need them. All you need is right there in front of you, for miles and miles.
I could go oooon and oooon about Sicily.
My hubby, Alessandro, and I spend more time shopping for Sicilian property online than is probably healthy! (“Ohhh, look at this one!”)
You know that if Sicily is worth looking for a summer home on, it is definitely worth seeing!
Hear what past clients have to say about their time on Sicily with Italian Fix.
We have two dates in 2018 for your consideration.
May 3 – 13
July 6 – 16
Registration closes for all of our 2018 departures in 11 days.
If you want to come with Italian Fix, get those date requests in. Our next trips won’t be scheduled until 2019 and that is wayyy far away!
With love + Sicilian almond granita,