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Sicily in January? Rain? Walking Valley of the Temples OK? Or should we go someplace else?

Sicily in January? Rain? Walking Valley of the Temples OK? Or should we go someplace else?

Old Sep 10th, 2001, 08:18 AM
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Sicily in January? Rain? Walking Valley of the Temples OK? Or should we go someplace else?

Planning a possible trip to Sicily in January and wondering if the weather will deter traveling place to place and viewing the sites. Should we use the train to get to major towns, then walk? Or rent a car for the 6-7 days? Are restaurants/hotels open or closed during this season? Tips of what to avoid weather-wise or other-wise appreciated. If the weather prevents an enjoyable adventure, then where in Italy do you suggest for this time of year? Thanks.
Old Sep 10th, 2001, 09:24 AM
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I've travelled throughout Sicily in April, and never in January, but I believe that you can expect some rain and some cold weather. Most hotels and restaurants in the major cities (Palermo, Catania, Agrigento, Siracusa) are open year-round. The primary exception is Taormina, where many hotels and some restaurants will be closed (this would not be a reason to avoid Taormina, however). If I were going for (only!) 7 days, I would allocate as follows: 3 nights in Palermo, 1 night in Agrigento, 1 night in Siracusa and 2 nights in Taormina. I would take the bus or train to Agrigento (2 hours), the bus from Agrigento to Siracusa (4 hours, connecting in Catania), and the bus from Siracusa to Taormina (2 hours, connecting in Catania). In my mind, you won't be able to see much more in 7 days, making the possibility of renting a car somewhat less useful (if you did rent, you would want to stop at Piazza Armerina (midway between Agrigento and Catania) to see the Roman mosaics at the Villa of Casale). A car is totally useless in the major cities. If you see the Cathedral of Monreale, near Palermo (local buses go up the hill every 30 minutes), you could sacrifice the one in Cefalu in favor of other sites. If you see the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento, you can sacrifice Segesta and Selinunte for a return trip.
Old Sep 11th, 2001, 05:50 AM
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Thanks. Good suggestions.
Will we be walking in the mud? And are we talking thunderstorms, light drizzle, or? does anyone know? I haven't been able to find information anywhere that describes JANUARY.
Old Sep 12th, 2001, 11:31 AM
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February was very uch OK this year!
I made osme notes after my trip then and you are welcome to them if you send me an e-mail but the last reply seems very good to me and I ma not sure how much my notes would add.
Old Oct 21st, 2001, 08:43 AM
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Dear Ruth,
January is certainly the coldest month of the Sicilian winter.
It may be rainy and in this case there are good museums to visit or very nice shops or it may be sunny and you can even get some suntan as the sun is quite warm even in winter.
My suggestion is to rent a car and experience the Sicilian way of driving.
It may seem crazy at the beginning but you simply have to follow the stream.
Beside the Valley of the Temples that definitely needs a car there are many other intersting places almost everywhere , Mount Etna, The Gorges of Alcantara River , Siracusa with its Greek and Roman remainings of the past, Ragusa Ibla , not to say about Palermo and its surroundings or Sciacca.
Sicily is really worth a visit, but take time to see it or you just will have a smell of it.
Temperature rarely goes below 14 - 16 degrees centigrade (I don't know the farnheit scale).
The wind may be cold but a good raincoat will do.
Old Oct 21st, 2001, 12:41 PM
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January like Dora said is the coldest month. You can also expect to find rain.
The only problem with this is you can really never count on it, but just expect it, the worst thing is, in Sicily, when it rains, it pours (rains for days at a time).
Old Oct 21st, 2001, 01:46 PM
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I hate to tell you this, but Dora and "xxx" are right. I visited Sicily a few years ago in January and it POURED. In fact it was so bad, that we were asked to leave at least one site as flooding was feared. Sicily is fascinating, but most of the sites are outdoors and it became impossible to see anything. We went to Rome.

I'd thumb through ON PERSEPHONE'S ISLAND by Mary Simeti ( think that's her name). I found it after the fact. She was the only one who mentioned "rain in the winter". All the guide books I looked at before booking the trip stressed the "year round mild climate". In retrospect I should have known better, as L.A. weather is pretty close to Italian weather and IF it rains here it'll rain in January or February and it comes down in sheets.

Old Oct 22nd, 2001, 02:47 AM
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We went to Sicily last January and it wasn't fun. Cold, windy, nasty and we are from the Northeast U.S. so we are used to cold. Yes, it rained and rained and rained again. Brrrrr......We love Sicily but not in January. Ruth I would wait or go to another destination.
Old Oct 22nd, 2001, 08:32 AM
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Went to Sicily in January 2 years ago, and again last month. The weather was somewhat miserable in January, often rainy or overcast, and even Taormina felt like a ghost town. Go somewhere else if you can. What about Asia? Thailand was fun in January 3 years ago.
Old Oct 23rd, 2001, 04:23 PM
richard j vicek
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Good evening, Ruth ([email protected]????)
Have been into Sicily as late as the
10th of December,
January average hi is 60 deg f.
average lo is 41 deg f.
average precip. for January is 2.9"
however October is 4.2 and December, 3.4
Don't think this weather would be too
bad, be able to dress in layers, have
a poncho and good waterproof shoes.
Have a good trip. Richard of LaGrange Park, Ill..

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