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Things to do in Sicily

Things to do in  Sicily

Welcome to Sicily

Sicily, the largest island in the Mediterranean, is full of the beauty and history that gives Italy its reputation as a top-tier destination. Separated from the mainland by the narrow Strait of Messina, across which ferries travel regularly, the island boasts a strategic location in the Mediterranean, making it a desirable prize for many a conquering culture—that may help explain Sicily’s dizzying variety of architectural and culinary styles. Food is a serious pastime here, and a food tour (which often also includes wine) of cities such as Taormina, Syracuse, Palermo, or Catania will acquaint you to regional delicacies, as will a cooking class. To make sense of the busy, regional capital of Palermo—which boasts historic churches and the gilded mosaics of Monreale—take a guided walking or bike tour. Taormina, by contrast, has been a popular seaside resort for centuries—there's even an ancient Roman theater overlooking the town center, to which some guided tours provide skip-the-line tickets. Near Taormina, the massive volcano of Mount Etna looms over the landscape and makes the soil perfect for growing wine grapes—see for yourself on a tasting tour. The oldest part of Syracuse is the small island of Ortygia, on Sicily's eastern coast, that's designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the southern part of Sicily, the ancient Greek ruins in the Valley of the Temples near Agrigento are also UNESCO listed. The island is ringed by beaches, making Sicily a beloved summer vacation destination for Italians and visitors alike.

Top attractions in Sicily for Spring

#1
Isola Bella

Isola Bella

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The Italian name of Isola Bella contains both a truth and a misnomer: though worthy of being called beautiful, this tiny rocky outcrop along Sicily’s coast near Taormina is not actually an island. Located off the Lido Mazzaro beach on the Mediterranean Sea, Isola Bella is connected to the mainland by a narrow strip of sand that is often covered with water at high tide. The picturesque point was gifted to Taormina in 1806 by the King of Sicily and later purchased by the Scottish Lady Florence Trevelyan—her villa still sits on the highest point—until being taken over by the region of Sicily and made a nature reserve in 1990.More
#2
Palermo Cathedral (Cattedrale di Palermo)

Palermo Cathedral (Cattedrale di Palermo)

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Over the centuries, Sicily was ruled by successive waves of conquerors, each one leaving their mark on the island’s architecture, culture, and cuisine. A perfect example of this blend of cultures is the Palermo Cathedral (Cattedrale di Palermo), a fascinating patchwork of Norman, Arabic, Gothic, Baroque, and Neoclassical architectural styles.More
#3
Mt. Etna (Monte Etna)

Mt. Etna (Monte Etna)

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Set on the eastern coast of Sicily, Mt. Etna (Monte Etna) is among Europe’s tallest (and the world’s most active) volcanoes. A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2013, the volcano has shaped Sicilian history and continues to impact life on the island today. Visitors can explore the mountain’s smoldering volcanic craters and lava fields.More
#4
Taormina Greek Theatre (Teatro Greco)

Taormina Greek Theatre (Teatro Greco)

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One of Taormina’s most spectacular sights is its 2nd-century Greek Theatre (Teatro Greco), which, despite its name, is actually an ancient Roman amphitheater built in the Greek style. Sitting high above the coast, the theater has beautiful views over Taormina, the Sicilian coastline, and Mount Etna.More
#5
Taormina Piazza Duomo

Taormina Piazza Duomo

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Taormina is best known for its 2nd-century Greek Theatre, but this Sicilian city perched high above the eastern coastline of Sicily has a number of impressive historic attractions. One of the most important is the Cathedral (Duomo), set on a pretty square of the same name (Piazza del Duomo) along the main Corso Umberto I thoroughfare.More
#6
Massimo Opera House (Teatro Massimo)

Massimo Opera House (Teatro Massimo)

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The largest opera house in Italy, Palermo’s handsome 19th-century Massimo Opera House (Teatro Massimo is one of the city’s crown jewels. From its elegant neoclassical exterior honoring Sicily’s ancient temples to the lavish gold-and-velvet interiors with impeccable acoustics, this landmark theater dazzles with more than just music.More
#7
Fountain of Neptune (Fontana di Nettuno)

Fountain of Neptune (Fontana di Nettuno)

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Lording over busy Via Giuseppe Garibaldi where it runs into Piazza dell’Unità, the monumental Fountain of Neptune (Fontana del Nettuno is one of Messina’s most eye-catching public fountains. Built in 1557 by Giovanni Angelo Montorsoli—a collaborator of Michelangelo—the fountain symbolises the city’s power over the hostile sea.   More
#8
Trapani and Paceco Salt Pans Natural Reserve (Riserva Naturale Integrale Saline di Trapani e Paceco)

Trapani and Paceco Salt Pans Natural Reserve (Riserva Naturale Integrale Saline di Trapani e Paceco)

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One of the most unique destinations along Sicily’s western coast, the Trapani and Paceco Salt Pans Natural Reserve combines the fascinating history of traditional sea salt harvesting with the spectacular beauty of the over 150 species of bird that use this protected area as a haven for nesting and migration.More
#9
Ortygia (Ortigia)

Ortygia (Ortigia)

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The captivating former Greek and Roman city of Syracuse wasn’t actually founded on Sicily, but on a tiny island just offshore called Ortygia. Connected by two bridges to the mainland and modern expanse of the city, Ortygia is where you’ll find Old Town highlights such as the Duomo, Temple of Apollo, and Fountain of Arethusa.More
#10
Gambino Winery (Vini Gambino)

Gambino Winery (Vini Gambino)

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Set at the foot of Mt. Etna, the lush vineyards of the Gambino Winery are testament to the fertile volcanic soil this rumbling peak has created over millennia. The mountain’s unique terroir comes through in the area’s wines, and you can sample a variety at the winery while admiring the sweeping views across the Sicilian countryside.More
#11
Valley of the Temples (Valle dei Templi)

Valley of the Temples (Valle dei Templi)

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Italy is rich with ancient Roman ruins, but Sicily’s Valley of the Temples (Valle dei Templi) is unique. Here, some of the some of the best-preserved ancient Greek ruins on earth dot the hillside outside of what was once the Greek city of Akragas, dating from when this area was part of Magna Graecia in the fifth century BC.More
#12
Corso Umberto I

Corso Umberto I

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Get a feel for the Sicilian town of Taormina by strolling down its main street, Corso Umberto I, which is crowded with locals shopping and socializing. Begin at the medieval Porta Messina city gate, stop to take in the view over the water from Piazza IX Aprile, and end in Piazza Duomo, home to the city’s historic cathedral and fountain.More
#13
Cefalù Cathedral (Duomo di Cefalù)

Cefalù Cathedral (Duomo di Cefalù)

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The UNESCO-listed Cefalù Cathedral (Duomo, dating from the 12th century and one of the finest examples of Norman architecture in Sicily, is a highlight of the historic town of Cefalù. Known for its imposing fortress-like exterior and lavish interior mosaics, the duomo is a must for art and architecture enthusiasts.More
#14
Piazza Duomo

Piazza Duomo

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A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Piazza Duomo is both a jewel of the Sicilian baroque and the vibrant heart of Catania. Home to some of the city’s most sumptuous architectural treasures, including Palazzo degli Elefanti, the Cathedral di Sant’Agata (Duomo), and the Fontana dell’Elefante, this square is a highlight of Catania city tours.More
#15
Vucciria Market (La Vucciria)

Vucciria Market (La Vucciria)

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While Palermo has a number of bustling outdoor markets worth exploring for the lively atmosphere, the most famous is Vucciria Market, known locally as La Vucciria. Located in the historic center around Piazza San Domenico, the stalls predominantly sell fish, meat, and produce—but you can find a little of everything here.More

Trip ideas

Best Ways to Experience Mt. Etna

Best Ways to Experience Mt. Etna

How to Spend 1 Week in Sicily

How to Spend 1 Week in Sicily

Baroque Hill Towns in Sicily

Baroque Hill Towns in Sicily

Top activities in Sicily

Etna Excursions from Catania

Etna Excursions from Catania

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Etna Morning Trip
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Etna Morning Trip

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Mt. Etna and Taormina village full day tour from Catania
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Etna Countryside Food and Wine Lovers Tour (Small Group)
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Etna Tour in 4x4

Etna Tour in 4x4

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Palermo Street Food Walking Tour
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From Catania Etna at Sunset half day tour
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Cooking class in Taormina With Chef Massimo
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 Agrigento; Valley of the Temples, Scala dei Turchi from Palermo, Private Tour
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Mount Etna Half-Day Tour - Small Groups From Taormina
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Etna, Wine and Alcantara Tour - Small Groups from Taormina
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Recent reviews from experiences in Sicily

star-4
Oreste was an amazing...
Rhonda_G, May 2022
Underground Catania
Would have liked to see more underground sites.
star-5
Mt Etna
Gautam_G, Apr 2022
Etna Tour in 4x4
Our English speaking guide Luka was knowledgeable and passionate about “Mother Etna”.
star-5
Noto tour
Joan_M, Mar 2022
Noto - half day tour (departure from Syracuse)
Noto is very nice to visit.
star-5
Definitely worth it!
Katharina_B, Jul 2021
Syracuse, Ortigia and Noto walking tour from Catania
It was a relaxing time, I got the chance to see so many beautiful sceneries, listen to the stunning stories of a competent and friendly tour guide, ask questions, got some free time to explore the places on my own and experience more of fascinating Sicily!
star-5
Good fun
Traveller, Aug 2020
The Godfather Movie Iconic Locations: Savoca & Forza D'Agrò small group tour
Had a good time on this tour, getting to see some stunning parts of Sicily we wouldn’t have found on our own.
star-5
More than met expectations
Alexia_A, Jul 2019
Commissario Montalbano day tour
It covered all that we wanted to see from the Commissario Montalbano programmes but also, our guide, Alessio, was also extremely interesting and well-versed in the overall history and geography of Sicily.
star-5
Amazing experience, excellent guide
Heather C, Aug 2018
Ortigia: Syracuse's Ancient Town Center Private Tour
And we were able to see in detail by walking that any other form o f transportation.
star-5
This was a very worthwhile trip! A...
Silka F, Sep 2017
Half-Day or Full-Day Wine Tour in Western Sicily
A fantastic way to see Sicily's lovely scenery and experience the beautiful wineries and culinary delights.
star-4
This tour was very good ! The guide...
Lyndon D, Jul 2017
Montalbano' Filming location & Best Baroque in Sicily - departure from Taormina
We didn't get to see the mafia mansion and very long 12 hour tour but still worth it !
star-5
This was a great tour, got to see...
Patrik A, Dec 2017
Aeolian Islands Day Trip from Taormina: Stromboli and Panarea
This was a great tour, got to see the Aeolian archipelago in a day and also the wonderful Stromboli island and it’s volcano.
star-5
What a truly delightful experience...
Karen Z, Oct 2016
Sicilian Wines and cheeses Tasting in Palermo
Would highly recommend this event to anyone new to visiting Palermo.
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The tour was great! Marco the guide...
Leesa I, Apr 2017
Godfather Private Tour with options of Food, local Wine and Lunch
Bar Vitelli was really interesting to visit.
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It was a great tour. I enjoyed all...
Victor A, Aug 2016
Palermo Walking Tour and Street Food
It was great that we got to see some sights on the tour as well.
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This tour was interesting and...
Olivia t, Sep 2015
'The Godfather' Movie Tour from Taormina
This tour was interesting and enabled me to see parts of Sicily that I would otherwise not have seen.
star-5
Highlight of our trip!
Kym_A, Nov 2021
Etna 2000m & Taormina
The trip itself is great value for money as you get to visit multiple locations, all of which are beautiful and full of history.
star-5
Unforgettable tour
Mathilde_D, Aug 2021
Etna Horse Riding Tour 2 Days
Impossible to visit Sicily without doing this tour.
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Flawless experience
Naomi_E, Aug 2021
Tour of Mt Etna Off-Road with Quad Bike
Especially during the summer months as temperatures can reach about 30C+ Our guides were great and made sure no body was left feeling uneasy with the trip!
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Amazing tour!
Sabrina, Oct 2020
Mount Etna and Taormina day tour
When I come back to Sicily, I will reach out to him first to see which tours are available.
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Beautifully Baroque
Sabrina, Oct 2020
Baroque shades of Sicily (Noto, Modica and Ragusa day tour)
When I come back to Sicily, I will reach out to him first to see which tours he has available.
star-5
Nice day excursion to the Etna and Taormirna
Andreas_K, Oct 2020
Etna And Taormina Full Day Excursion from Palermo
But it has to, if you want to see Etna and Taormina in one day.
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