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Palermo

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Dec 29th, 2013, 08:15 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Feb 2011
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Palermo

Hi everyone,

Sorry for the vague question that follows but my husband and I would like to visit Palermo in May 2014. The vacation will be approximately 2 to 3 weeks so we will definitely want to visit other locations. So, my question is... can anyone suggest a possible itinerary? (We prefer historical attractions.)

I'm asking this general question because we have travelled quite a bit in Europe over the past 10 years and would like to see cities that we haven't been to before. To give you an idea, we have been to northern Italy (including Rome), Spain, Austria, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Belgium, etc., but only a few cities in each country.

So, to eventually narrow down our itinerary, can anyone suggest cities/attractions in Europe that shouldn't be missed?

Any help and/or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
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Dec 29th, 2013, 08:47 PM
  #2
kja
 
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Sicily is a wonderful place, particularly in May when the wildflowers are in bloom (look for BobtheNavigator's photos.), and a trip of 2 to 3 weeks is perfect for Sicily IMO!

I found the Rough Guide the most useful of the guidebooks I used for Sicily.

When in Palermo, do NOT miss the cathedral in nearby Monreale!
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Dec 29th, 2013, 09:29 PM
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I loved Sicily and hope to go back. If you search on Sicily here you should turn up several TRs (including mine) which will give you plenty of ideas. I used Lonely Planet, but I'd start with one of the glossy guidebooks to help you decide what you want to see.
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Dec 29th, 2013, 09:31 PM
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You want to visit Palermo but not any place else on Sicily? You only want to visit cities and not smaller towns? Since you've only tagged this post for Italy I'm guessing you want to stay in Italy. Please clarify.

Two weeks is a good amount of time for Sicily and you could spend the other week in the Naples/Sorrento area. I would start in Palermo for several days, rent a car and make a loop around Sicily.
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Dec 29th, 2013, 09:41 PM
  #5
kja
 
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The idea of adding some time in Naples and the Amalfi Coast is a good one, if you can find a way to limit your time in Sicily to just 2 weeks or so. With an interest in history, you might want to see Naples, Pompeii, Herculanum, Paestum, and Salerno (not to mention Capri and the Amalfi Coast itself).
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Dec 30th, 2013, 02:18 AM
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Archeological places in Sicily:
Siracusa, Taormina, Agrigento, Segesta, Selinunte, Piazza Armerina, Tindari, plus the archeological museums at Palermo and Reggio (Calabria).
Baroque towns in Sicily:
Noto, Modica, Ragusa
Arab and Norman gems in Sicily:
Palermo, Monreale

For prehistoric temples and other buildings, you may check Malta:
daily ferry from Pozzallo/Sicily, planes from Palermo and Catania.

For the prehistoric Nuragus culture, check Sardinia: ferries from Palermo and Trapani, planes from Palermo and Catania.

There are also cheap buses and low cost flights from Sicily to Bari http://www.blu-express.com/
Gems to visit from there: Matera, Castellana caves, Alberobello, Ostuni, Cisternino, Lecce (Baroque town), Vieste, Tremiti Islands, Termoli ....
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Dec 30th, 2013, 08:58 AM
  #7
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This is awesome. Thank you for the interesting information!

Adrienne, I tagged the post for Italy simply because Palermo was the focal point, but we're certainly not limited the travel to just Italy. However, kja, neckervd, thursdaysd did bring up some interesting information for visiting more of Italy. Also, although we didn't state it, we definitely want to visit smaller towns as well.
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Dec 30th, 2013, 09:09 AM
  #8
 
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You might want to take a look at my trip report on Sicily, skipping the medical emergency part if you wish; click on my name to find it.
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Dec 30th, 2013, 10:27 AM
  #9
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Thank you Michael. I read your very lengthy and detailed trip report. I have a question for you and/or anyone else viewing this thread. As mentioned in your report, is most of Sicily truly shabby with a striking amount of garbage? If so, then there must have been quite an odor.
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Dec 30th, 2013, 10:38 AM
  #10
 
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"is most of Sicily truly shabby with a striking amount of garbage?"

Not that I noticed. (On the other hand, I've been to India, my standards may be lower....)
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Dec 30th, 2013, 10:43 AM
  #11
 
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There is no real odor. The trash was mainly within and outside Palermo. We did not see it elsewhere. Whatever the reason for the trash piles (we saw bigger ones in Naples), it is clear that it is mainly dry trash with little odor.
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Dec 30th, 2013, 05:04 PM
  #12
kja
 
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I did not notice trash when I was in Sicily (or Naples, for that matter, but there we no strikes when I was there). The only time I was conscious of an odor was just after a fish market had closed in the middle of a very hot day. Not too surprising, and the odor quickly dissipated.

As I was planning my trip, I remember reading a trip report that suggested that Sicilians were more tolerant of litter than elsewhere (I didn't notice much litter, even though I had been forewarned to watch for it). What I really remember was the next thought offered by the trip reporter -- something like, well maybe that explains why Sicily has so many spectacular ruins; they weren't obsessed with "cleaning up."
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