The influence of Greek inheritance can be seen better in Syracuse, even in Taormina. Syracuse was founded Greek decree in 733 BC. Between the thirteenth and fifth centuries BC Was one of Europe’s most powerful cities. For years, his only rivals were Etruscans and Carthaginians, whom he defeated without any problems before being conquered by the Romans in 214 BC. Today, the old town, Ortigia, and the vast archaeological site (Parco Archeologico) are tourist destinations to be included in any Sicilian itinerary. Only the modern city built on the ruins of the Second World War bombardment is a disillusionment.
Syracuse’ best sights
You can start exploring Syracuse either from Ortigia, the old town crammed on an island connected to the main island and the modern city by a dyke, or the Parco Archeologico, a very attractive open area that stretches to the place of the ancient Greek city of Neapolis, Located above the sea level and modern suburbs.
The entrance to the Parco Archeologico (Largo Paradiso or Acheological Park) is marked by a small visiting center and a pile of stands where all souvenirs are sold. Beyond them, on the left side, there is the first important vestige of the site, Ara di lerone II, a huge sacrificial altar of the thirteenth century BC. – 450 bulls were slaughtered here in one day. Today, it is occasionally used as a stage for various performances. From the 5th century BC The remains of Teatro Greco, an amphitheater built with stones hauled from the nearby hill – has 150 seats, making it the largest theater in ancient Greece.
Near the theater is Latomia del Paradiso, the site of an ancient career that says that in 413 BC, 70 Athenian prisoners would have found their end. The cave is known as Orecchio di Dionisio (Dionis’s Ear), so named by the painter Caravaggio in 1608. (The legend says the acoustic properties of the cave enabled the old Syracuse leaders to hear the prisoners and the conspirators And hence the strange name he has chosen.) Another nearby cave, Grotta dei Cordari, was used by the Greek ropes, the moisture here preventing the hemp from breaking as it was twisted.
Syracuse is the home of Archimedes (287 BC), the eminent mathematician and scholar, famous for his discovery – from the bathtub – that any body submerged in a liquid is pushed vertically upward with a force equal to the weight Of the displaced liquid volume. In 214 BC Contributed to the defense of Syracuse in front of the Roman invaders, trying to direct the rays of the sun through a system of lenses and mirrors to fire the enemy fleet. When the Romans entered the city, he was so caught up in the calculations that he did not hear them and was killed by a Roman infantryman.
Before going to Ortigia (buses and taxis are outside the ruins), you should visit the Regional Archeology Museum (Viata Teocrito 66). The museum has a collection of novels found on the nearby site and elsewhere, and was built on the ruins of the former Villa Landolina, a ten-minute walk from Parco Archeologico. To the west is Catacombe di San Giovanni (Viale San Giovanni), the oldest catacombs of Sicily and the largest in the world, apart from Rome. The portion of catacombs open to the public is currently closed.
Ortigia was the heart of the old Syracuse for about 2,700 years, its easy to defend position, and fresh water springs transforming it into a natural fortress. Here the Romans were held under siege in the thirteenth century for 13 years. The Tucidian chronicler described this siege as “the greatest battle in Greek history.” Today, the island retains a Baroque and medieval appearance that is largely due to reconstruction after the catastrophic earthquake of 1693.
From Ponte Nuovo (New Brdige) you reach Piazza Pancali (Pancali Square), where the incomplete Tempio di Apollo (565 BCE), the oldest Doric temple in Sicily.
The main tourist attraction of the city is the Dome, whose Baroque façade hides the Temple of Athens (5th century BC), embedded in the structure of this Christian religious site. Do not forget to visit Fonte Aretusa, the precious and original source of Ortigia; Passeggio Adorno, a picturesque promenade; And the Regional Museum (Palazzo Bellomo, Via Capodieci 14) which hosts a collection of paintings (including works by Caravaggio and Antonello da Messina) and other artifacts.
Best beaches in Syracuse
The Sicilian coastline near Siracusa has some of the finest beaches on the island with long white sandy beaches surrounded by the incredible natural scenery around, marked by the traces of an ancient Greek history that has strengthened cultural forever The island of Sicily.
Starting from Brucoli to Isola delle Correntithere are 100 kilometers of coastline, with some rustic and wild sections, while others are animated and arranged.
Calamosche, Fontane Bianche, Vendicari and the Plemmirio Marine Reserve are just some of the places that can be admired here and where you can spoil yourself in the sunshine of the Sicilian sun.
Thanks to a gradual and monitored tourism development, the brilliance of these paradise places has benefited in the last years from all the facilities necessary for a complete vacation.
Together with the archaeological discoveries of the old Syracuse, the baroque flair of Val di Noto and the cultural events that take shape here, the beaches of the Syracuse province will be the ideal place for your holiday in Sicily.
The beach of Avola
You may have heard of his wines, but try to spend a weekend on his beaches and, of course, you will not have an unpleasant impression.
The beach of Gallina is probably the most famous because of its beautiful natural landscapes. Within the Fiume Cassibile Reserve, this wonderful sandy beach opens, ideal for children because here they can play with confidence, thanks to the bottom of the sea that slowly descends from the shore. At Marina di Avola continues a long sandy strip that alternates bathing facilities with free beaches (free).
Although it is a favorite place for locals, the beach attracts the interest of many young people, thanks to the lively summer series.
If you are looking for a less crowded place, Marquise beach will be ideal: warm, surrounded by greenery and swimming the beautiful sea, this beach is one of the most delightful places on the east coast of Sicily.
Situated in a naturally protected area of winds and currents, Brucoli is the first seaside resort in Syracuse and of real interest for tourists coming from the north.
The seaside is a giant stone suddenly pushed by nature to the sea, with cliffs of up to ten meters, sinking in beautiful blue water, creating small caves and creeks full of fish and crustaceans, easily visible to those who equip themselves with a A mask and a snorkeling.
It is a place that has always fascinated by its position from which you can admire the white smoke of Etna (it is a place similar to that of Milazzo). In fact, due to its proximity to Catania, the location is chosen mainly by young tourists attracted by the diverse nightlife that the city can offer.
The beach in Carratois Punta di Rio
A tropical name and natural Sicilian beauties stretching ten kilometers from the sandy beach and clear water. Moreover, with Correnti Island visible in the background, it is an ideal setting for those looking for relaxation and fun, together with the sun and the unmistakable sea in Sicily. This part of the coast is suitable for everyone, due to the stunning coastline and the naturalness of its waters. There are good bathing beaches that allow you to enjoy many services and entertainment throughout the summer. Continuing to the west there are other beautiful beaches, such as Punta Ants, Amber Coast. There are of course no long rocky and bay areas where you can diving and fishing with spears.
Cala Mosca Beach is a delightful place to visit during the holidays in Syracuse. It is in a fairly hidden area of the coast, but it has a difficult road that can be accessed by car, but not entirely. It is set on one of the stunning corners of Sicily, a white sandy beach. Being a wild beach, do not forget to take your refrigerator containers for lack of facilities.
Eloro Beach is located near the old center of Helorus. Despite the fact that it is close to Lido di Noto, due to access difficulties, the whole environment has remained particularly private, with a long stretch of sand covered with rocky branches. The water is clear as the crystal with green hues. Situated on the territory of the Vendicari Reserve, it has no form of service or facilities, ensuring a total naturalness to this wonderful beach. You will reach Eloro Beach on a narrow street, but here you will find a great parking lot. From there, you will go through the Reservation for 5 minutes before accessing the beach.
Marzamemi Resort and its beach
Marzamemi beach draws its name from the small resort with the same name in the Syracuse region, which is a place well appreciated by foreign tourists for its beaches and the charm of the old world, which has managed to maintain itself over time.
Syracuse’ Ortigia Beach
Any tourist staying in Syracuse will be able to swim in the mythical waters of the resort. Ortigia, for example, has terraces under the sun that make it easy to descend by the seaside rocks.
Vendicari Beach is located in the center of Vendicari Nature Reserve, surrounded by lush vegetation that attracts large birds, especially during migration, such as flamingo.