This summer, Jonathan and I rented a car and took a road trip around the southern coast of Sicily. We stayed in beautiful Bed and Breakfasts, ate pasta to our hearts’ content, and drank Aperol Spritzes every day. Obviously, you need more than seven days to see the whole island, but here’s an itinerary to help you make the most of a week in Sicily.
Day 1 – Palermo
Arrive by noon so you have plenty of time to take a walk around the city and still fit in an afternoon nap. Sicilian’s are night owls and you won’t want to miss out. When the sun goes down, walk to Vucciria, a lively area where you can grab food and drinks among the locals. We had some mouth watering pistachio pasta at Dadalía Osteria, then continued down the alley for some local beer and a late night pizza slice.
Day 2 – Zingaro Nature Reserve and Tripani
Pick up your rental car early and drive two hours to Zingaro Nature Reserve, where you can spend the day hiking and swimming in pristine coves. When you’ve had your fill, drive another hour and stay the night in Tripani.
Day 3 – Marsala
Sleep in, have cannolis for breakfast, then drive 45 minutes to Marsala. In Marsala, you can take a short walk to see Cape Boeo, one of the three points of Sicily (depicted on the Sicilian flag as three legs). Feel free to take an afternoon nap so you have plenty of energy to enjoy the nightlife, which really comes alive between 11:00 PM and 2:00 AM. There are plenty of bars you can pop into, or head to the fish market, which becomes a series of bars and dance clubs at night. Don’t forget to try the Marsala, it’s not just a desert wine!
Day 4 – Turkish Stairs and Agrigento
The drive from Marsala to Agrigento will take a little over two hours, but you can break it up with a swim stop at the brilliant white Turkish Stairs. In Agrigento, get a meat and cheese sandwich from the local bakery and get some fruit from the market for dessert. The cherries and nectarines are particularly sweet and juicy.
Day 5 – Valley of the Temples and Syracuse
Aim to get an early start at Valley of the Temples so you can avoid the afternoon heat. Once you’ve experienced all of the ruins, drive three hours to Syracuse where you can see another one of Sicily’s three points.
Day 6 – Catania
Drive an hour to Catania and spend your day walking around this picturesque city at the base of Mt. Etna.
Day 7 – Depart from Catania
You can fly or take the ferry to your next destination. If you are heading to Malta, you can take a shuttle bus to Pozzallo for the 1:45 hr ferry to Valletta.
Considering a Sicilian road trip for your next vacation? Read my post for 10 Tips for Driving in Sicily.