I think it’s safe to say that we have a problem. Both Dave and I are addicted to travel.
It’s not the worst addiction to have; it’s actually a really fun addiction but, it’s an addiction nonetheless.
A couple of weeks ago, after noticing that there were a few upcoming free days in his school schedule, Dave and I both immediately jumped on Skyscanner. Obviously, we were going to take advantage of the break; it never even crossed our minds that there could be another option (see, I told you we were addicted…)
Over the next few hours, we scoured the site trying to find the best deal to the best location.
After much debate and many what if conversations, we’d made our decision, booked our tickets, and this Saturday morning (before the crack o’ dawn) we’re off to Sicily!
I’m incredibly excited for this trip because it will be my first time in Italy–hooray! I’ve always wanted to go to Italy–to eat the food, see the sites and explore the country from top to tip–but the timing (and price) just weren’t right. That is until now!
In total, we’ll have four days to relax and explore–two in Taormina and two in Catania. As with most of our trips, we’ve got a lot to pack into just a couple of days, but I think we’re up for the challenge.
So, without further do, here they are…
The Top Ten Things I’m Excited to See, Do and Eat:
Ancient Greek Theatre of Taormina
The Ancient Greek Theatre of Taormina was built in the third century BC and it is the second largest theatre of its kind in Sicily. Although a great part of the seats have disappeared, a good portion of the theatre has been preserved.
The theatre also offers spectacular views of Taormina, which I hope to take in during our trip.
Mount Etna is an active volcano located near Taormina. It is one of the most active volcanos in the world, the second largest in Europe, and the tallest active Volcano in Europe standing at 3,329m.
Many companies offer tours of the volcano, but we haven’t decided if we are going to take a day and trek to the top–we only have four days and the cost is slightly above our budget. Regardless of whether we take in a tour, we’ll definitely have the chance to enjoy this geographical wonder from the base.
Relax & Take in the Views
The hotel we booked in Taormina is located at the bottom of the hill, close to the water. It’s known for its amazing views, so I plan on starting each day of our stay relaxing on our balcony, drinking coffee and taking in the scenery.
Piazza del Duomo & The Elephant Fountain, Catania
Following our two days in Taormina, we’ll head back down the coast to Catania. One of our first stops will be the Piazza del Duomo, which is the main city square in Catania and the home of the Elephant Fountain (elephants are a key symbol in Catania, so I hope to see statues throughout).
Catania Cathedral, Catania
Catania Cathedral is an imposing building located in the Piazza del Duomo and was originally built between 1078 and 1093.
Due to earthquakes and eruptions, the cathedral has been destroyed and rebuilt several times over the years. It said to be a spectacular building, both inside and out.
Graeco-Roman Theatre & Odeon, Catania
Just west of Piazza del Duomo are the ruins of twin theatres, Graeco-Roman and the Odeon. Apparently, they can’t be seen from the road, so a bit of exploring and curiosity will have to get us to these impressive ruins, but it’s definitely something I don’t want to miss.
Catania’s La Pescheria is a daily fish market that takes over the city streets, and Lonely Planet describes it as “…street theatre at it most thrilling.” It sounds like a can’t miss event to me, so I won’t.
Eat Pesce e Frutti di Mare (Fish & Seafood)
And now, to my favourite part of travel planning: the food!
While we’re in Sicily, I hope to indulge in many, many, many different types of seafood–from fish to shellfish, I want to try it all. I mean really, I can’t go to the seaside and not sample all of the fish!
Arancini! Arancini are a fried ball of rice and meat. We first sampled them at the farmer’s market in Ottawa last summer (random, I know) and I was so excited to see that they are a speciality in Catania.
I see many arancini afternoon snacks in my future.
And, no meal or snack is complete without dessert, and there’s no better dessert to eat in Italy than cannoli. Yum!
BONUS: Eat Gelato
Because no trip to Italy would be complete without it!
Have I missed anything? What would you recommend I add to my list?
All photos courtesy of Pixabay.com, unless otherwise listed.
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