View of the town of Taormina on the island of Sicily in the Mediterranean with the snow-capped volcano Etna in the background © pilat666/
View of the town of Taormina on the island of Sicily in the Mediterranean with the snow-capped volcano Etna in the background © pilat666/

Sicily – Island of Joie de Vivre

Published: 06 June 2024, 14:30

Sicily is not only the largest island in the Mediterranean, it is also a feast for the senses. Sicily is the island of joie de vivre, offering exciting places, cultural highlights and fantastic nature. History buffs can travel back to ancient times and visit Greek temples, such as Agrigento and Segesta. Of course, you could fly to Sicily for a beach holiday – but you would be missing out on a lot.

Sicily is a diverse holiday destination with vibrant island cities, such as Palermo and Catania, charming coastal towns, such as Taormina and Cefalù, impressive landscapes around the active volcano Mount Etna and endless sandy beaches. The Mediterranean island is a real hiker’s paradise with its many mountains. Its southern location promises a mostly pleasant climate with up to 2,600 hours of sunshine a year. 

Numbers, data, facts

  • Time difference: none
  • Population: 5 million
  • Official language: Italian
  • Currency: EUR (Euro)

Around the island – Sicily highlights

Palermo – the vibrant island capital

Palermo is located directly by the sea in the north of the island and is characterised by a mixture of Mediterranean and oriental atmosphere. A walk through the island’s capital is like a journey back in time through different architectural styles. The Arabic-Norman churches, magnificent baroque palaces and elegant art nouveau kiosks are fascinating. The Cathedral of the Assumption of Virgin Mary, which was built in the 12th century and has undergone many changes over the years, is spectacular. A climb to the roof of the cathedral is definitely worth it – from there you have a fantastic view over the Old Town, the sea and the mountains. Another highlight are the markets, such as the Mercato del Capo or the Ballarò, and the street food stalls in the city centre. From exotic spices to bags, shoes and fresh fruit – you can find almost everything here. Alongside Catania, Palermo is the ideal starting point for discovering the island on a tour or day trip.

Five tips for Palermo

Sicily from BER

Five travel tips for ...

1. Stroll through markets and sample street food in Palermo

2. Test the waters at Cefalù Beach

3. Take the cable car up Mount Etna 

4. Enjoy the fabulous view of the Ionian Sea from Taormina

5. Admire the art treasures, churches and palaces of Ragusa

1. The first starter: caponata (braised vegetables)

2. The second starter: pasta con le sarde (with sardines)

3. Main course with meat: brociolone (meatloaf with eggs)

4. For dessert: brioches with ice cream and cream

5. The classic: cassata Siciliana (layer cake)

1. Drive to the wonderful Valley of the Temples in Agrigento

2. Visit the Aeolian Islands, such as Stromboli, north of Palermo 

3. Admire ancient treasures in Syracuse 

4. Explore the beautiful baroque town of Caltagirone in the Val di Noto 

5. Be awed by the luxury Villa Romana del Casale

Picture Source title:
© pilat666/  

The information published on this page is current as of the date of publication or update.