Sicily, Noto

Well my dear friends, I am relaxing in Reggio Calabria on Italy’s most famous boardwalk. The beautiful breeze and the smell of the sea water is enchanting, as I look over the Straight of Messina I’m fascinated with what I see, the island of Sicily directly in front of me. I think once, I think twice, and decide, I’m off to explore Sicily. Do join me, as my journey through the wonders of Italy continues, I make my way to Villa San Giovanni Reggio Calabria where you take the ferry boat “Caronte” and in only 20 minutes you arrive in Messina.

I was researching one day as to various tours and can across one that True Blue Italy Sicily tour offers, very interesting, which fascinated me and made me curious to learn more. What will my destination be? As I asked myself the question, I soon found the answer. I am personally fascinated with architecture and all the wonderful history that surrounds southern Italy, so my decision was very clear, the Capital of Baroque in Sicily and a UNESCO world heritage site was waiting for me. Are you ready for a wonderful ride? We are off to “Noto”. Driving on Italian roads is such a challenge, there is always something fascinating that you encounter along the way. Your completely surrounded with everything that god could have created, the road down to Noto is breathtaking, mountains, cliffs, towns, nature, castles on my right and on my left the sea an unbelievable blue color and what makes the view even more fascinating is looking at the region of Calabria on the horizon, wow I am already happy with what I see. The sea breeze, the warm sun on my face and the essence in the air accompanies you into a fairy like world.

Along the way I come across a sign that says “Cannoli Freschi” well you know what that means, that you cannot leave Sicily without trying the cannoli, I didn’t just try one or two, I thought to myself what better moment or place to enjoy a cannolo with chocolate and pistacchio, ”mamma mia“ was all I could say. I encountered a tour guide and asked directions as to where Taormina was. A beautiful typical Italian old lady, which reminded me very much of my nonna, looks at me and in a beautiful Sicilian accent says to me, “Bedda ci sii”, which means, beautiful its here, takes me by my hand and accompanies me outside, points to a cliff I look up and there it was, beautiful Taormina. She looks at me with her eyes full of pride, gives me a big hug and says goodbye, I hugged her and thanked her “grazie”, there was that special something that makes southern people unbelievably warm hearted just like the sun that shines in their summer sky.

Travelling down to Noto was such a rich experience, if you love baroque like I do I recommend to visit the nearby Ragusa, Modica and Siracusa with the stunning Ortigia on a Sicily tour. I have arrived, the town is built with a honey coloured stone, giving it a unique charm. Noto was completely destroyed by an earthquake in 1693 and was rebuilt. I make my way into the town, walking so slowly literally in shock as to all the beauty that I see. Palaces, churches, balconies, iron railings, it’s also called the garden of stone, because of its typical stone.

I am capturing every single thing, with my mobile phone and with my camera, how could you not take and treasure all that you see, absolutely impossible. Corso Vittorio Emanuele is the main street, and you come across three piazzas, the first is Piazza Immacolata, the second is Piazza Municipio and the third is Piazza XVI Maggio. My dear friends, this has been a unforgettable day which is not finished yet, because I am getting hungry. I am drawn to a little restaurant that serves fresh fish my favourite dish, if you travel in southern Italy fresh fish dishes are a must. I have lunch at Ristorante Dammuso. Literally taken to heaven and back after an incredible lunch I continue my journey.

Along with the honey coloured stone are the symbols that came from Bourbon Monarchy. There are so many churches. I am amazed by The Cathedral with its large staircase. The church of San Francesco all’Immacolata, the Monastero del Santissimo Salvatore and Santa Chiara. It is a very pleasant warm day, and enjoying absolutely everything and tasting everything that is typically Sicilian, why not I asked myself everything is so perfect, people around me talking away, the words that come out of their mouths are like music, Italians dance like when they spreak, wonderful. Bars and icecream shops filled with people and tourist, the last thing that I must try and do believe that you will agree with me when you travelling on a tour of Sicily is to also try their very famous granita. To end such an absolutely perfect day in Noto Sicily the Capital of Baroque, is a granita al gelso in a very famous bar “Caffè Sicilia”. Yummy, fresh, so so good. Sicily I love you, and I may just choose to explore one more of your many, many beautiful cities. So until next time my dear friends I do hope you enjoyed, let’s keep travelling together, so much more to see and narrate to all of you. Sicilian Tour a must, arrivederci a presto.

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