I was born and raised in Palermo, the regional capital of the beautiful island of Sicily. As long as I can remember, I have had this passion for travel.
I’ve been travelling around the world since I was a kid. Although, my entire concept of travel changed the moment I decided to walk the Camino de Santiago all by myself in 2014. It was more of a life-changing experience rather than just another trip to a beautiful country.
After completing the Camino, I became a conscious traveller and no longer a tourist. Now travel to me means freedom, curiosity and above all else it opens my mind to new possibilities. The world around you is constantly changing when you travel. There are endless experiences to enjoy.
At the same time you learn that the world is full of wonderful people. It means making friends with someone you never would have met otherwise. Those people can quickly become friends for life which is just amazing!
The more I have travelled the more photography has grown as a passion for me. I see the beauty in everything around me when I look at the world. A crystal-clear blue sea, a cloudy sky, the colours of a sunset – whatever it may be. I try to capture my point of view to appreciate how lucky I can be.
Home Sweet Home: The Beautiful Sicily
Even though I often travel around the world, I’m always happy to come back to that beautiful place I’m lucky to call home – my lovely Sicily. My Instagram followers know how much I love this beautiful land full of contradictions that has so much to offer.
Sicily is an amazing land rich in history and ancient cultural traditions. Travellers can find everything they’re looking for on a trip here. A land where art, history and nature melt indissolubly together. From the sea to the volcanoes, from the tasty food to the warm welcome of its people.
This is a passionate land where even the hospitality resembles an art form. There are so many reasons why you should visit the intoxicating Sicily. For me, it’s just a spectacular place to live for all the reasons I mentioned above.
The Fascinating Ancient History of Sicily
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean located off the “toe” of Italy. Due to its central location in Europe, it has always been a melting pot of different civilizations and a favourite destination for conquerors.
This island has been Phoenician, Greek, Byzantine, Arab, Norman, Swabian, Aragonese, Spanish, Savoy, Austrian and Bourbon. All of these civilisations have left a mark on Sicily that is clearly visible in the inestimable artistic and cultural testimonies found throughout the island.
Examples include Palermo, Taormina, Syracuse, Monreale, Cefalù, Caltagirone, Noto, Segesta, Selinunte, Erice and the Aeolian Islands, just to name a few.
Exploring Every Corner of this Volcanic Island
My motto is “I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list” (Susan Sontag). That’s why I can safely say that I have explored this land known as Sicily far and wide. From the main cities to the unknown little fishing villages.
Of course, there are still many places I haven’t seen yet. The first place that comes to mind is Pantelleria. It’s a small island located between Sicily and Tunisia. Pantelleria is also known as the “Black Pearl” of the Mediterranean for its volcanic geography. I can’t wait to visit this unique island one day!
Favourite Place in the World – Favignana
When I’m asked what’s my favorite place in Sicily I have no doubts. The place I love the most in Sicily is definitely the stunning island of Favignana.
It’s the largest of the Aegadian Islands (Favignana, Marettimo and Levanzo) located four miles off the coast of Trapani, west of Sicily. If you love the sea then you will absolutely love Favignana. Even though it’s a small island, it still offers every kind of natural beauty one could hope for.
Thanks to its geomorphology, you can find beaches with fine sand as well as enchanting caves. Cala Rossa is one of the most beautiful beaches in Italy. So much so that it earned second place on the rankings of 2019. This beach is famous for its breathtaking views and colourful sea.
With that being said, my favourite beach in the entire world is Cala Azzurra. A beautiful paradise where the water of the sea is crystal-clear and you can only surrender to the beauty of nature. This place infuses me with a sense of calm that I can’t feel anywhere else, especially visiting in the morning.
Favignana is also known for its cuisine. If you love to eat seafood then you can’t miss out on a tuna steak from one of the amazing restaurants here.
10 Best Things To Do in Sicily
1. Discover the Salt Pans of Trapani and Marsala
One of the best things to do in Sicily is to go see the salt pans between Trapani and Marsala. I suggest you stay there until the sunset because at this magical hour the water on the lagoon reflects the colours of the sky and tinges everything with gold. It’s the show of a lifetime!
2. Visit my Happy Place: Mondello Beach
You can’t come to Sicily without seeing my happy place, Mondello Beach. This is the most famous beach of Palermo. It’s also the place I love to capture the most. The sea here is so blue and the sand so white and fine that it almost resembles something out of the Caribbean.
Seasonal gastronomic kiosks and gourmet restaurants flank the beach and streets of this former fishing village too, making it a wonderful visit.
3. Watch the Sunset at Barcarello
There’s one sunset in Sicily you can’t miss! It’s considered one of the top 10 most beautiful sunsets in the world. Among all of the sunsets I have seen so far around the world I completely agree with that! The sunset at Barcarello is set in a nature reserve characterised by a rich and varied fauna.
4. Take a Long Stroll through Palermo
The only way to fully understand the spirit of this land is to immerse yourself in the atmosphere of local markets, find the best street food stalls in the city and sample a variety of regional specialties. A couple of specialities you should try are the ‘Arancina’ and ‘Cannoli con la Ricotta’.
Take a walk in the historic center amongst the wonderful theaters like the amazing Massimo Theatre (one of the largest opera houses of Europe and the biggest in Italy) and discover spectacular churches on every corner.
5. Tick Lampedusa off your Sicily Bucket List
Visiting Lampedusa is a bucket list experience. It’s one of the most popular destinations for those who love sunshine, diving and nature. This island south of Sicily is the last strip of Italian territory before the African coast. A boat trip is the best way to appreciate the beaches and coves.
One of the best beaches in the world is located on Lampedusa, namely the sparkling “Spiaggia dei Conigli” otherwise known as Rabbit Beach.
6. Sailing Trip to the Aeolian Islands
A sailing trip through the Aeolian Islands is not to be missed. There are seven islands to discover in total: Panarea, Vulcano, Alicudi, Filicudi, Lipari, Salina and Stromboli. Each one of these islands is more beautiful than the next. The Aeolian Islands are a world heritage site in themselves.
7. Marvel at the Gulf of Macari in Sicily
The gulf of Macari is a natural oasis on whose horizon you can see the Egadi Islands. If you stay here until the evening you’ll witness a superb sunset. Macari is close to the most famous beach in Sicily – San Vito Lo Capo – with its crystal clear waters and ice cream called Caldo Freddo.
8. Go Skiing on the Volcanic Mount Etna
Skiing on Etna is a breathtaking experience. This world heritage site is Europe’s largest active volcano and one of the main tourist attractions of Sicily. From the top of its slopes, with the snow under your feet – you can ski with a stunning view of the sea below. It’s such a unique experience!
If you’re not an avid skier then you can always opt for a trek to the crater of the volcano. You’ll feel like you’ve arrived on Mars between the sea and sky.
9. Wander around the Valley of the Temples
The Valley of the Temples is a world heritage temple site. It’s one of the most significant testimonies of Greek art and culture in Sicily. The Temple of Concordia has kept all its ancient charm intact and together with the Parthenon is considered the best preserved Doric temple in the world.
Located just a stone’s throw away from the Valley of the Temples is one of the most fascinating cliffs in the world called “Scala dei Turchi” also known as the Stair of the Turks. This is a splendid dazzling white jewel of a cliff that frames the limpid blue of the sea. Just a phenomenal place to see!
10. Explore the Romantic Town of Taormina
Taormina is considered one of Sicily’s best tourist destinations and I highly recommend spending at least a few days here. It’s a town not to be missed if you love the ocean, history and culture in one place.
Enjoy the Sensational Cuisine of Sicily
Sicily is not just famous for its sun, beaches and treasures of art, history and culture. It’s also famous for its sensational food, especially the unique specialities of food found in each region and province of the island.
Among the best dishes you will find in Sicily is a food called ‘Arancina’ which is a stuffed fried rice ball. If you’re in the Catanese area of Sicily it would be called ‘Arancino’ – the male version.
This is one of the most tasty dishes typical to Sicilian cuisine. If you want to try the best of the best then you should go to Bar Pasticceria Alba. If size is the most important factor then you should check out Touring Cafe Beach in Mondello where you can try the famous ‘Arancina Bomba’.
Another dish that will light up your tastebuds is the Cannolo. It’s one of the best known specialities of Sicily. Then there’s the street food which you have to try too. ‘Pane Panelle e Crocchè’ or the ‘Pane con la Milza’ are just fantastic. Walk through the narrow streets of the food markets and enjoy!
Get Pampered by the Hospitable Sicilians
Sicilians are a unique people in the world. We are generous and are always open to others in a positive way. Hospitality is so important to us.
Despite having a difficult history and many stereotypes that are difficult to dispel – one thing is for certain. In Sicily, foreigners and tourists are always welcome. Travellers will feel welcome, settled and joyfully pampered.
Where to Stay in Sicily – Guest Houses
Guest houses are the ultimate places to stay in Sicily because that’s where the hospitality is at the highest levels. Breakfasts will be prepared with love and there will always be someone ready to give useful travel advice.
What you Need to Know Before you Go
The best time to visit Sicily is from May to September (the end of spring and start of summer). For the rest of Sicily, the only advice I can give to those who want to visit this beautiful place is to enjoy every moment.
To finish, I would like to make the following consideration. Whenever I am somewhere in the world on one of my travels, surrounded by people of various nationalities – I answer the question which country I come from.
It’s such a shame because Sicily is just wonderful. Here’s what Johann Wolfgang von Goethe said when he came to visit this island: “Without Sicily, Italy creates no image in the soul: here is the key to everything.”
And it’s true.