Sicily: Tour the Island

May 4th, 2002, 05:44 PM
  #1  
Jim
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Sicily: Tour the Island

Three of us will be visiting Italy again from 11Sep02 thru 5Oct02. We want to spend 1-2 weeks in Sicily. Our dilemma. We usually rent houses but there doesn't appear to be a central place to stay and do day trips. We are thinking about just getting a car and driving around, hoping to check into hotels or B&Bs when we find a place we want to spend a few days. I'm too old/fat/lazy to think about backpacking. Just want some assurance we'll be able to have enough to do, will be able to drive relatively easily and find fun places to stay and eat. Any hints or thoughts?
 
May 4th, 2002, 08:52 PM
  #2  
LA
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Jim -- you will have no problem touring the island with a rental car in that amount of time. Just get your car after visiting Palermo, so you don't have to drive there. The high points are pretty obvious -- Segeste, Erice, Selinute, Agrigento, Siracusa, Piazza Amerina. The southern coast (Gela, etc) is not nice. The food everywere will be great. The main roads are good. The town driving is challenging.
Buona fortuna.
A sicily lover in Oregon.
 
May 5th, 2002, 04:45 AM
  #3  
Maddy
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Hi Jim

I agree..Sicily is too big to have just one base. I think you plan will work out fine. We had a rental car in Sicily a few years ago and it was easy driving except for Palermo...and we even managed there. Palermo has lots to see and is a good base for daytrips to Cefalu, Monreale, and the Mondello beach area less than 30 minutes from the city. For the east coast of Sicily, consider Taormina for a few days. It's beautifully situated with fantastic views of Mt. Etna and the sea, a few worthy sites and within daytrip distance of Mt. Etna and Catania and the beaches at Giardini-Naxos. I'd add Taormina into your itinerary after a visit to a hectic city like Palermo for a few days of relaxation. Taormina gets lots of tourists but also has plenty of hotels and we were able to find decent accomodations on the spot in May.

The south coast has Agrigento and Selinunte..the Valley of the Temples is a must-see especially at night when it's lit up - but I'd consider making an advance reservation for Agrigento. There weren't a lot of hotels to choose from and most of the reasonable ones were pretty dreary.

We didn't have time on our first visit to include Siracusa but others who've been recommend it.

Maddy
 
May 5th, 2002, 05:47 AM
  #4  
Carol
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You need more than one week to do this at a reasonable enjoyable pace!
 
May 5th, 2002, 12:58 PM
  #5  
Holly
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How accessible are these towns using public transportation? Anyone know of bus schedule website(s)?
 
May 6th, 2002, 06:48 AM
  #6  
Holly
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Anyone?
 
May 6th, 2002, 08:14 AM
  #7  
GAC
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Holly: most of the important tourist sites in Sicily can be reached by public transportation (mainly by bus). I've made several postings in this travel forum on this topic. If you look at the list of bus companies published in The Rough Guide to Sicily (under the chapter for Palermo), and then do a name search on the internet, you will find several of them publishing schedules. If you indicate the city pairs of intrerest to you (for example, Palermo to Agrigento), I can probably tell you from memory the approximate fequency of bus service.
 
May 6th, 2002, 08:26 AM
  #8  
Holly
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Thanks for your response. I will seek out your earlier posts. I've already seen some of them; very helpful. Once I get deeper into the planning stage, I'll post back with more specific questions.
 
May 6th, 2002, 08:37 AM
  #9  
GAC
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OK. FYI, I'll be in Italy & Lipari from mid May to Mid June
 
May 8th, 2002, 08:46 PM
  #10  
Jim
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Thanks for a couple of your hints. Am I simply mad to try to circuit the Island in 8 days? In our group, one would like to go to Marasala (guess why), another must go to Agrigento and I would like to go to Syracuse and Taormina. If you had only 7 or 8 days, would you blow off the west coast? We will be flying in to Palermo in the afternoon where I'd pick up a car and start driving toward some destination. Thought we'd dump the car at the end of the trip and finish in Palermo rather than begin.
 
May 8th, 2002, 09:08 PM
  #11  
dodin
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I agree,In Sicily there is not such a thing like a central place to stay and do day trips,
All other travellers, split the island in 2 (Eastern and western side).Then,
you have 2 central places where to stay and do day trips. http://verdetecnica.tripod.com
 
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