Carovana Romantica Rally 2017 sets off to discover Sicilian Baroque. An area in the south-east of Sicily, among the richest in history and culture, from Magna Graecia to the Renaissance, a land of conquests, invasions and stratifications of peoples like in few places in the world, where the sun is blinding and the sea bathes ancient partly forgotten tuna fisheries. Watching over us is the black giant that still spouts jets of incandescent lava: the Etna Volcano, the largest active volcano in Europe.
We start right from the slopes of the volcano, from the Picciolo Golf Resort, for a first day on roads almost surrounded by black lava stone, among vines, capers and Mediterranean scrub towards Randazzo, whose medieval buildings in black stone close off the central square, where a group of majorettes together with the municipal band. We reach Linguaglossa and Piano Provenzano, through a pine forest that ends in the large plateau, to set off, wearing the right shoes, for a trek on the craters, some of which are underground formed by small cavities: a little secret that few know. From here we reach Bronte, the home of pistachios, for a visit to the Fernandez farm and its pistachio gardens. In the evening we reach Piazza Armerina, near Enna, to visit the famous Roman mosaics of Villa Romana del Casale, second only to the collection of the Tunis museum.
We then set off to discover the Golden Baroque, towards Palazzolo Acreide and Noto, the capital of this wonderful architectural style, unique in the world, with buildings and cathedrals that light up with golden reflections at sunset.
We continue along the Barocco itinerary to Modica, where the characteristic chocolate is still produced according to the recipe of the ancient Aztecs, where the local tourist association gives us a chocolate bar dedicated to Carovana Romantica. After a tasting of Sicilian reds at the Giasira Winery, we continue to Scicli and then reach Caltagirone, famous for the art of ceramics, with its thousand-coloured staircases.
The following day we reach the extreme southern edge of the island, where everything has the flavor of Africa up to Portopalo di Capopassero, for our "African Beach Party" on Pachino beach. In the afternoon, stop at the Tonnara di Marzamemi, a magical place where tuna fillets in oil are still canned.
Last stop on the island of Ortigia, where ancient Syracusa stood, the capital of an ancient kingdom, where we base ourselves in a resort housed in an ancient monastery. Day dedicated to visiting the historic center, also full of white stone buildings, to attend, in the evening, a breathtaking show unique in the world: Greek comedy in the ancient and majestic Greek theater of Syracusa. An unforgettable evening that ends with a dinner based on the best pizza in Sicily!
Last stop of the Tour in Taormina, the pearl of Sicily, known throughout the world.
Rally 2017 Map
Around the Etna Volcano: Linguaglossa Piano Provenzano
Etna, the largest volcano in Europe and among the most active in the world, with the northern side of Linguaglossa, in a mix of nature, culture and traditions, in the heart of the Etna Park, a UNESCO heritage site. Randazzo, a medieval village of very ancient origins, with its black stone buildings, for a long time the gateway to Sicily and "the city of 100 churches".
The Golden Baroque: Buscemi- Palazzolo Acreide- Noto
Noto, the Capital of Baroque, a UNESCO heritage site, which dominates a valley of citrus, olive and almond trees, with its buildings built with the typical honey-coloured stone, including the Cathedral and Palazzo Nicolaci. The other wonderful baroque cities of Ragusa, Modica and Scicli
Unesco heritage sites: Modica- Scicli- Ispica
Modica with the Cathedral of San Pietro and the Church of San Giorgio, and city of chocolate, produced with a unique recipe in the world, dating back to the Spanish domination of Sicily. Scicli, with their mazes of ancient streets, which climb up the rocky hills, full of majestic baroque churches and noble palaces.