Tour of Western Sicily: What to do and see

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Aina Martin
@ainamartin
SOURCES CONSULTED:

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

Sicily is a wonderful land. It is the largest island in the Mediterranean and has an incredible blend of cultural influences that make it unique on an artistic level.

It has breathtaking landscapes, between mountain peaks and beaches bathed by crystal clear waters with shades of colors that you will not forget.

But Sicily is not just sea, it is full of suggestive places of historical interest and medieval villages.

In this article we focus on Western Sicily, made up of unforgettable views, enchanting beaches, dream islands and cultural attractions.



Tour of Western Sicily

For our tour of Western Sicily we have chosen as a base sferracavallo, where we were guests of a dear friend.

Sferracavallo is a seaside village of Palermo, located 3 km from the more famous Mondello, is located at the foot of the promontory of Capo Gallo and is part of the homonymous Nature Reserve.

Sferracavallo is an excellent base for exploring Western Sicily, in addition to its strategic position, it also offers a crystal clear sea.

However, I remind you that there are no beaches but only rocks, so I recommend that you bring some beach shoes, which are also useful for other areas, such as the island of Favignana or the beaches around Scopello.

Palermo

After a first day of pure relaxation, spent between a swim and the first tastings of the culinary delights of the place, we went to discover the noble Palermo, one of the most important cities in Italy.

The historic center of Palermo is among the largest in Europe, rich in historical and cultural attractions. The ideal would be to dedicate at least 2 or 3 days to the Sicilian capital, but even with just one day it is possible to admire some of the main places of the city.



The nerve center of the historic center is "Quattro Canti" o Piazza Villena, where the main arteries of the city cross: Corso Vittorio Emanuele and via Maqueda.

A few steps from the Quattro Canti there is Piazza Pretoria, also known as the square of shame, due to the naked statues surrounding the fountain.

Do not miss the beautiful Cathedral and monuments such as the Tatro Massimo and the Palatine Chapel.

To savor the real Palermo and immerse yourself in an even more authentic atmosphere, a visit to the markets is a must Vuccir├Ča, Ballar├▓ and Il Capo, where to taste the typical street food of Palermo.

SEE THE BEST HOTELS IN PALERMO

Cefal├╣

The second stop on our tour of Western Sicily was Cefal├╣, an enchanting medieval village, known for its beaches, transparent sea and artistic beauties.

Cefal├╣ is located about 70 km from Palermo, we have chosen to reach it by train, a convenient and economical solution.

We left from Palermo central station and in less than an hour we arrived in Corfu. The station is located a few meters from the village and the beach.

Don't miss a visit to the Cathedral of Cefal├╣, a marvelous monument, built in 1100 by Roger II, yet another demonstration of the immense historical and cultural wealth of Sicily. 

Behind the Cathedral is the Rocca overlooking the village, where halfway there are the remains of the Diana temple. The climb to the top is quite challenging, but the panorama and breathtaking views are unparalleled.



Cefal├╣ offers an enchanting historic center where you can stroll through the narrow streets, typical restaurants and small shops.

Obviously, in addition to the beauty of the village and the cultural attractions, Cefal├╣ offers tourists some of the most beautiful beaches in Sicily.

The best known is Lido of Cefal├╣, a beautiful beach bathed by crystal clear waters and set in a unique setting, with the seaside village and the imperious fortress behind it.

We visited Cefal├╣ in the day in August and it must be said that in that period the town is overrun by tourists, but fortunately the beach, although narrow, is very long and offers both free and equipped spaces.

Cefal├╣ can also be an excellent base to stay in Sicily, perfect for relaxation and for visiting other areas of the island.

SEE THE BEST HOTELS IN CEFALU '

Favignana

We finally arrive at my favorite stop of ours trip to Sicily, the enchanting island of Favignana.


To get to Favignana, we reached Trapani, where we took the hydrofoil that took us to the island in about 20 minutes.

Here we first rented bikes, got a map and set off to discover the wonderful beaches.

Among the best beaches of Favignana there are: Lido Burrone, Cala Azzura, Cala Rossa, Calamoni and Marasola.

For reasons of time we have chosen to visit Favignana in one day, but the island is a real jewel and certainly deserves more days, perfect for a week of pure relaxation!

Important: if you too will visit Favignana in a day, once you arrive on the island inform yourself which side the wind blows so as to choose the less windy beaches and enjoy them to the fullest.


SEE THE BEST HOTELS IN FAVIGNANA

Erice

We return from Favignana and before returning to Palermo we decide to visit Erice and admire the splendid panorama at sunset. The village can be reached by cable car or, as we did, directly by car by parking it at the beginning of the village.

The village is quaint and cute, with alleys and typical houses, the view of the coast is not to be missed.

Important: bring a sweatshirt or sweater because the town is very windy and cool enough, even in August.

Scopello

Last stage of this wonderful tour of Western Sicily it was Scopello. Scopello is a medieval village and one of the two starting points for exploring the Zingaro Reserve, a path surrounded by nature with crystalline sea coves, which reaches San Vito lo Capo (another starting point).

We did not visit the reserve due to the strong wind, we wanted to go to the Faraglioni beach but unfortunately there were too many people and we had to wait more than an hour to be able to enter so we preferred to admire it from a panoramic point of the village of Scopello .

After a walk in the medieval village and a taste of the typical cunzatu bread, we relaxed in Guidaloca, a pebble beach with a Caribbean-colored sea, located just 3 km from the town.

SEE THE BEST HOTELS IN SCOPELLO

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