Sicily summer holidays

Hot the summer up on the island of Sicily

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Ronnie McCluskey

Ronnie McCluskey
HomeAway travel expert

SicilySicily might well be a small island, but given its cultural legacy – not to mention its cuisine, nature reserves and national parks – it should definitely be classified as a heavyweight of Italian tourism. While you can certainly find many lovely beaches on the island, sunbathers are spoiled for choice when it comes to filling the rest of their time: there are myriad ancient Greek and Roman sites to explore; the famous, smouldering volcano of Mount Etna to marvel at; alluring Baroque churches in which to soak up the silence. From port to port, Sicily gives visitors the chance to satiate the imagination’s longings.

Sicily, as you might expect, is an exceedingly popular tourist destination for summer holidays. However, there are always ways to stay ahead of the crowd. Hop on a hydrofoil and go island-hopping around the Aeolian Islands off the north coast; get away from the beach bums and take in the salt pans of west Sicily; drop in on the rustic villages clustered in the Madonie National Park; cool off in Lipari’s incomparable archeology museum. The diversity of the landscape means you’ll never be short of options.


Five incredible summer holiday destinations in Sicily


Summer holidays in Cefalu Summer holidays in Cefalu

Cefalu is a town located within the province of Palermo, on the northern coast of Sicily. Tourists rock up here for the beauty of the Tyrrhenian Sea and for the storied history of the region; temples, castles and megalithic walls are all part of the package. Among the other sights are a multitude of churches, including Cefalu Cathedral, built by Roger II in the 1100s. Alternatively, why not explore the ancient Roman baths, before stopping for a cold refreshment at one of the many beach bars? Masquenada, near Piazza Garibaldi, is a great choice for cocktails.

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Summer holidays in Ragusa Summer holidays in Ragusa

Named one of UNESCO’s World Heritage sites, the city of Ragusa is built between two valleys, Cava Santa Domenica and Cava San Leonardo. Here you’ll find plenty to keep you entertained, from Bronze Age necropoli to 11th-century cathedrals. What’s more, Ragusa, being somewhat off the beaten path, is home to some of the quietest beaches in all of Sicily. Of course, food and drink is always going to be associated with this island, such is the quality of the family-owned restaurants and cafés. Work up an appetite hiking the Hyblaean Mountains and reward yourself with a delicious Cavatieddi, a fresh pasta dish of pork sauce and sausage, served locally. 

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Summer holidays in Agrigento Summer holidays in Agrigento

Agrigento is not only a vibrant Italian city, perfect for modern summer holidays, but was also the home of the ancient Greek city, Akragas – and like in other parts of the island, one gets an enormous sense of the Greek influences here. Visit Valle dei Templi and you’ll find no fewer than seven ancient Greek temples. Much of the ancient ruins have not been fully excavated yet, but what has already been uncovered is a treasure trove for history buffs. You can then explore churches and cathedrals from the 13th and 14th centuries, as well as an archaeological museum housing further precious artefacts.

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Summer holidays in Marsala Summer holidays in Marsala

Marsala, found on the western coast of Sicily, ranks fifth amongst the most populated cities on the island. If you’re planning a summer holiday here, you’re in for a treat; the old streets have a decidedly Baroque feel to them, the wineries are first-rate, and the eateries – especially Ill Gallo e I’Innamorata – are positively acclaimed. Those with a penchant for architecture will appreciate diverse elements from the various civilisations that once called Marsala home throughout the ages. While here, you'll naturally want to sample some authentic Marsala wine, for which the city has become famous. 

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Summer holidays in the Aeolian Islands Summer holidays in the Aeolian Islands

The Aeolian Islands, located north of Sicily in the Tyrrhenian Sea, is the name given to the volcanic archipelago that comprises some seven Sicilian islands. Adventurous explorers will be in their element here – the terrain is more than a little rugged, with deep caverns, sheer cliffs and magnificent active volcanoes. Alternatively, go diving or fishing in the sea, hike up Fossa di Vulcano, then check out the Stromboli Crater, formed 40,000 years ago. When you’ve ticked these pursuits off your list, venture to the Museo Archeologico Eoliano to learn more about the history of the islands, including their volcanic activity.

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Summer Holiday Homes in Sicily

ANTICA DIMORA GRIMAUDO 4 sleeps, seaside villa with pool overlooking Mount Etna and eastern Sicily

PRIVATE STRUCTURE. On the tip of the promontory of Castelmola, overlooking Mount Etna and eastern Sicily with its old cities, its natural beauty and the crystal-clear blue sea of the splendid Sicilian coast, very close to Taormina and surrounded b...

CASE DEL CEDRO 8 / 4 sleeps, splendid seaside villa with garden and palm trees in front of the Sicilian sea.

THIS VILLA IS AVAILABLE ALSO IN 4 SLEEPS VERSION, PLEASE CONTACT EMMA VILLAS. RECEPTIVE STRUCTURE. The Case del Cedro are two beautiful houses situated in a large, luxuriant garden, with direct, private access to the crystal clear blue sea, typica...

VILLA GRAZIA 7 sleeps, holiday home with garden, satellite Tv, barbecue, situate

PRIVATE STRUCTURE. Villa Grazia is located near Portopalo di Capo Passero, a village situated in the midst of the Pachino tomato producing country on the southernmost tip of Sicily near the Isola delle Correnti where the Ionian and Mediterranean s...

IL GIARDINO DEI LIMONI 8 / 6 sleeps, villa with park and pool, immersed in a lemon grove, in a perfect position for combining culture, beach life and gastronomic itineraries of Sicily

THIS VILLA IS AVAILABLE ALSO IN 6 SLEEPS VERSION, PLEASE CONTACT EMMA VILLAS. PRIVATE STRUCTURE. Il Giardino dei Limoni (the Garden of Lemons) is immersed in a lemon grove, amidst the scent of lemons and gardens in Ispica, in a strategic position ...

VILLA VULCANELLO 12 / 10 sleeps, wonderful villa with pool in Sicily seaside

PRIVATE STRUCTURE. Vulcanello is a splendid villa with swimming pool, located on the island of Vulcano, one of the amazing Aeolian Islands, about 650 meters from the famous black sand beaches. “An island in the island” which renders everything mor...
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