Blogs from Sicily, Italy, Europe


Europe » Italy » Sicily » Lipari October 3rd 2019

Lipari was one of our favourite places when we visited in 2005. I am glad to say that we still love it as much as we did back then. We booked a place with a nice pool, so we could relax in between sight seeing activities. We also did a lot of the things that we did back in 2005, but this time we showed Nathan and Craig what we loved about the Aeolian Islands so much. Lipari is in the middle of the chain of islands, which Craig noted looked like the Hawaiian Islands on a map. That is because they are also volcanic in origin. Two of the islands have active volcanoes on them too. Stromboli is the most active and in 2005 we were able to climb to the top to see the ... read more
Stromboli with its smoke cloud
Close up to Stromboli
Stromboli Beach

Europe » Italy » Sicily » Trapani September 28th 2019

I can’t remember if I said anything about it in the last entry, but the food in Italy is quite good. And it was by pure chance that we ended up at the Cous Cous Fest in San Vito Del Capo one evening. The food and drink were plentiful and tasty. We found a tuna supplier handing out free samples. We also found a wine maker giving out free tastings. Then there was another tuna tasting for free; this time dried and saltier tuna. We loved it and actually bought some to take away with us. So, we wandered from tent to tent in the main street trying everything we could (some we had to pay for) until we found an all you can eat smorgasbord for 8 euro and that included any drink with it. ... read more
Bonagia Pool
Giuseppe's restaurant
From the harbour across the bay

Europe » Italy » Sicily » Ragusa September 23rd 2019

If you’re planning a health retreat, Italy shouldn’t be at the top of your list. They just live far too well here. That is what we have found on the first few days of our Sicilian escape. There is the food and wine … and well … I guess it’s mainly the food and wine. But who cares about waist lines when there is gelati, pizza and vino? From Malta we caught a flight to Catania. Just 40 minutes they said. I’ve never caught such a short flight. It left on time and I was confident that I’d be swimming in our pool that evening. Well, no, the hire car company put an end to that. Two hours of delay because we had to wait in line and negotiate about insurance and excesses because they wanted ... read more
Ragusa Gardens
Overlooking our valley

Europe » Italy » Sicily » Enna September 16th 2019

A great start to the day we left our apartment at 6.45am...all is quiet in Palermo! Good seats on the train leaving 7.27am on our way to Catania via Enna set high in the hills of mid Sicily. An absolutely amazing train ride through Sicily. Very hazy early morning. We were in the first carriage & were entertained by the 3 staff in the drivers compartment up front....a constant banter & the toot & hurrahs to the friends passed along the way. Everyone knows everyone so there was alot of it!! To hear the laughter & the exchange at beyond normal decibel range of most we appreciated they enjoy their life/job! The countryside looking very dry now at the end of their summer. Most crops have been turned over getting ready for the next. Burning of ... read more

Europe » Italy » Sicily » Palermo September 15th 2019

An early start to catch the Marina Markets (antiques) still nice & cool outside so we browsed for an hour then did some wandering of the streets. It was sorting & packing day so we headed home & we were so pooped we watched an english channel on tv ...the X Files!!!! we never watched it at home...but we just needed to recoup ready for our early 6am start tommorrow. Well tired of that tv we headed out again. Lots of buskers in the Piazza's & very good too. We found our way around the shops & people & nearly home again & we were drawn into the Municipal building that was once known as the Eagle's Palace. A self pronounced guide of these Council chambers pounced on us & took a small group of us ... read more
Fountain Pretoria
Statues on Fountain Pretoria
Giovanni Meli local Poet 1888

Europe » Italy » Sicily » Palermo September 14th 2019

9am walking start...through the Piazza Marina & onto the Marina area. Began to really heat up at 10am...29° daytime & 23° overnight...had to resort to the aircondioning a few times...which neither of us really like we prefer the open windows! A group of artists painting the boats & water scenery. We moved on round the waterfront & headed back inland through Porta Felice & caught the cute free bus..which takes you on the residential route mainly for locals but anyone can use it. Disembarked at Indepenzia & ventured through Porta Nuova to the gardens of Piazza dei Normanni. Wandered down Via Castro (where we stayed once before) & onto the Variety Ballaro markets.....this was all go! Saturday for the locals! Home for yummy lunch & cool down! The Cloisters outside our apartment were celebrating something...quite a ... read more

Europe » Italy » Sicily » Cefalù September 13th 2019

Off early while the temperature was still cool. Via Roma to the Palermo Centrale Stazione. €5.60 pp single trip 67km to Cefalu...44mins with a few stops. Great views of the coastline & holiday places. Sat with a couple from San Diego who had been to stay at Wainui beach in Gisborne with a couple who happened to buy Jim's car! Also their friend attends the same Dentist Conference that Emily attends in San Diego. Into surfing big time so out came the Mickey Dora story. Scorching weather by the time we got there....far too hot for the beach!!..we stuck to the shade & cool like most other sensible people. A little gem of a place....old town set under the Rock (Cefalu Rocco). Quite overbearing. Cefalu's main resource was fishing. The Norman Chiesa 1131...sitting at the highest ... read more

Europe » Italy » Sicily » Palermo September 12th 2019

Our feet have done some walking! Lots of places to sit down which suits us just fine. Set off to Quattro Canti corner which is part of the block we are in. Directly opposite on Maqueda we found the Norman church 1160 open, S.Maria dell Ammiraglio. Fantastic mosaics! Via Maqueda, another padestrian street was starting to come alive so we mooched along on the shade side & found our way through a side Alley to the Ballaró fish markets. Talk about vending outloud. Just enough room for people to stop at stalls & to give way to opposite travellers....mind where you step...uh there comes a scooter amongst it all...sit on the tomatoes...not quite:-P ...away we weave again....then another scooter...aubergenes this time. The Markets are so entertaining! We carried on to the Palermo Centrale Stazione & ... read more
San Giuseppe Quattro Canti
San Giuseppe ceiling
San Giuseppe marble floor

Europe » Italy » Sicily » Palermo September 10th 2019

The alarm didn't need to wake us this morning, we were well & truely up at 6am. Already packed the night before so we were on our way at 7am. The weather has been perfect in Rome which made getting around easy. Off to the Metro & it was already packed with workers...a plan was made if we got separated... The prearranged Ryanair bus transfer with SitBus shuttle went without any problems...a bit of a tour in & around Roma...good time to be on a scooter if you are trying to get to work. Arrived at the Airport at 9.20am & as we had checked in online we were basically able to head through customs check. A bit of a wait until boarding at 11.05am. I had put Brian down for priority boarding so he could ... read more
Palermo Airport
Trvelling into Palermo

Europe » Italy » Sicily » Taormina June 14th 2019

June 10, 2019 Monday - Siracusa to Taormina - left June 15 We had decided it was time to leave Siracusa and head up the coast to Taormina (still on the east coast of Sicily) but even though we set the alarm for 5:30AM for a 6:30AM departure we always take one last look at a weather update (just in case). It still looked fine, but in fact if we were “real sailors” and not just travelers who sail we would probably wait until tomorrow as there is more wind, BUT we are also looking at the calendar and all the places we still want to get to and decided “let’s go today”. Our main sail and anchor was up and we were heading out of the harbor at 6:23AM – a good start. Once out ... read more
Dolphins Visited Many Times on This Passage
We Had A "Guest" For About 2 Hours On Our Bow
Views on Our Way - Notice Mt. Etna

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