Sardinia or se sicily in january??

Old Jan 20th, 2019, 06:15 AM
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Sardinia or se sicily in january??

I have some time to travel with partner early next January. I'm in very early stages of musing about various destinations. I've been to Sicily a few times but never to Catania, Noto or Ragusa.
I imagine January would be a pretty good time to visit that part of the island (or any other part for that matter, except beaches).

I've never been to Sardinia. Would early January be ok? I don't have more than about 10 days but imagine I could see a nice portion of the island.

Any and all thoughts are welcome.

Last edited by ekscrunchy; Jan 20th, 2019 at 06:19 AM.
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Old Jan 20th, 2019, 06:41 AM
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As you don't mention the most obvious places to visit in the area (Siracusa and Taormina) I suppose you know them already. Therefore I don't think that it's worth the travel for the small cities of Noto, Modica and Ragusa only.
Things might be a bit different if you would plan to combine their visit with that of Malta, Agrigento or so.
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Old Jan 20th, 2019, 06:44 AM
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The provincial capitals of Sardinia can be visited within a few hrs each (small, but good museums at Cagliari and Sassari). All the rest is nature. Rainy and windy January might not be the best month for that.
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Old Jan 20th, 2019, 12:17 PM
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Thanks, Necker! Yes, I have been before to Siracusa, Agrigento, Taormina, but have never spent time on the west coast. I'm also intrigued by Catania. I could combine these places (maybe include Trapani and points west, if advisable??) with a few days in Rome, I suppose, since we have to fly through there anyway to get to Catania from the US.

Disappointed to hear that Sardinian weather is usually not so nice in January. I know nothing is for certain but iti sounds like kind of a gamble.

Our main interest is food, BTW.
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Old Jan 20th, 2019, 12:25 PM
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Too cold and/or rainy for either island. It's been a tough winter on some Mediterranean islands this year.
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Old Jan 20th, 2019, 02:17 PM
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Sardinia was perfect in October. Here is our trip report: Sardinia! You Gotta Go!! 8 nights. October

Sardinia is generally gray, rainy and cool in January. They had had a lot of sun this year, but temps been cool (highs 40’s to low 50’s). Sicily isn’t much different. We especially liked the high elevations in Sardinia, and there are lots, but we also saw a lot of warning signs for requiring snow tires and chains.

And, we enjoyed Trapani as a great Sicilian base but not in January.
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Old Jan 20th, 2019, 11:14 PM
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October is very different to January.

We have had really quite good weather in October in both locations but January probably will be damp. Both places flourish in good weather, both can look down at heel in the cold and rain.

My business neighbours are Sicilian and always warn me not to visit Sicily in the cold and rain, everyone is so miserable.

How about Marrakesh in January? we had an incredible experience/ weather there last January.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2019, 02:55 PM
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BC: That is a GREAT idea! I had thought of it for this year but ended up planning Sevilla/Cadiz for 2 weeks next month, solo.

I would be departing next winter from Miami area so not certain of the flights to Morocco, not to mention that partner would probably not love it. I've been a few times and even looked into going alone this winter but the flights from Florida..not so great..have to look again. Israel might interest partner but for one week or so, seems a long way to go..

But here is the question: I've been in Rome on a few Januarys and the weather was great...cool, a little rain maybe, but overall very pleasant. But your comments about the islands looking down in the heel in the persistent damp really resonated with me. Is it possible that these more southern areas have worse weather than Rome in January? Those Mediterranean winds???

I guess I ought to think of urban rather than rural/scenic. Proximity to Florida would be great, but I've either been to highlights in SA, or I think partner would not be too keen. Chilean Patagonia...worth the cost?

Guess I need to begin a new thread.....
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Old Jan 23rd, 2019, 05:00 AM
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Hi eks! Weighing in on the Sardinia portion of your question. We spent two weeks in Sardinia the latter part of January 6 years ago - one week each in Cagliari and Alghero. We had a great time which may have been due in part to mostly dry weather (like you we have spent time in Rome in January - our time in Sardinia was certainly sunnier and warmer than Rome usually is but of course there aren't any guarantees)

We found lots of great restaurants and the tourist sites were empty - we had the ruins to ourselves most times. We had a car the entire time which made for easy day trips. In Cagliari we stayed in the old town and in Alghero we stayed 1 kilometre out of town.

YMMV!
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Old Jan 23rd, 2019, 05:26 AM
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We spent 12 days in Morocco in December and loved it so much (and are not loving winter here this year so much) that we are leaving February 1 for a 5-week trip to Morocco. Not Marrakech this time (the place really gets to me after 3-4 days), but Essaouira. There are beautiful apartments or rooms in riads to be had there (in or out of the Medina, 5-minute walk to the beach) for a song, the food is amazing (and cheap), there is plenty of history all around, and you can, if you wish, take daytrips to many places - Agadir, Taroudant, the desert, even Marrakech, though that's a long day. We are going to spend 4 nights at the Almond Blossom Festival in Tafrouant about halfway through our stay at a nice hotel that is 20 euros a night (3 euros for breakfast - and Moroccan breakfasts are goooood!)

Here is the apartment we have rented in Essaouira: https://www.abritel.fr/location-vacances/p657393

Just over 1,100 euros for 35 nights (discount for long stay included)

You can check January weather averages, but I assure you they're very pleasant and very little chance of damp or rain.

There are cheap (as in 20-35 euros if you pick the right dates) direct flights to Essaouira from Bordeaux, Lyon, and I believe Paris, Luton and Stansted. The cheapest are with Easyjet. We got RT tickets for the two of us from/to Bordeaux for 121 euros. Hard to beat.
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Old Jan 23rd, 2019, 08:46 AM
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Hi eks, how about Uruguay?
It's high on my list (though as a vegetarian/sometime pescetarian a bit nervous about the beef-heavy cuisine). Weather would be godd, and just assuming flights from FL would fairly good--and no jetlag!
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Old Jan 27th, 2019, 01:28 PM
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Thanks, all....I have to do some further reading. Today's NYTimes has article on Uruguay!

So odd that I've always had good weather in Rome in January but that the islands, which I would have thought would be warmer than the capital, are not advised. Have to look into some of the suggestions...even thought now of Israel (?) where I've been just once, long time ago.
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Old Jan 27th, 2019, 02:22 PM
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The one time I was in Sicily in January it was constant heavy rain. When I would fly into the Naval Air Station in Sigonella we would be warned to stay away from Catania because it was not safe. I do not know if that is still the case since that was 20 years ago.
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Old Jan 28th, 2019, 06:33 PM
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I've not been to Sicily in January, but I certainly would do so if that were when I could travel. I wouldn't plan for outdoor/beachy activities, of course.
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Old Jan 29th, 2019, 12:57 PM
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I can go at another time, it's just that partner has a week free of activities that week; we'd be leaving from Miami.

Catania always had a bad reputation but we are careful enough and I am sure it's safer than 20 years ago. I mean, I was robbed in broad daylight in Palermo, in my hotel lobby! Could happen anywhere..

Back to drawing board..
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