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Published on: 03 May 2015
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean, offering beautiful beaches, stunning scenery, delicious cuisine, and fascinating history. The island’s rich and varied past has left a fascinating legacy of wonderful archaeological sites and majestic buildings, whilst Sicily’s most famous natural wonder – Mount Etna, has left a mark all of its own in the distinctive volcanic landscape that surrounds it. The people of Sicily are warm and friendly in nature and a villa holiday is a great way to meet the locals and experience the Sicilian way of life first-hand. You will also find plenty of opportunities to soak up the intriguing culture of the island by attending one of the many colourful festivals that take place throughout the year. Whether its culture, cuisine, countryside – or simply beautiful beaches you’re looking for - Sicily offers plenty for everyone.Learn more about Sicily »
Scopello is a pretty hamlet in the north west corner of Sicily and lies on the coast between the bustling resort of Castellammare del Golfo and the Zingaro nature reserve.8 villas 1hr Palermo
Acireale boasts wonderful baroque architecture, whilst sights include the Zelantea art gallery, the baroque church of San Sebastiano and the neo-gothic St Peter’s Basilica.2 villas 30mins Catania
The pride of Sicily's south-west coast, Trapani has been restored over the last few years to its original architectural splendour with many central streets, squares and boulevards being pedestrianised.2 villas 27mins Trapani
Trecastagni, which means three chestnuts in English, is a perfectly located ancient town standing on the lower slopes of Mount Etna, with nearby Acireale and Catania just a short drive away.2 villas 30mins Catania
Camastra is a busy little village in the Agrigento region of Sicily. There is a small selection of shops and cafes in the town and some local restaurants on the outskirts.1 villa 1hr 50mins Catania
The most westerly of the ancient Greek strongholds in Sicily, Selinunte has a long and fascinating history. Originally the site of 5 Greek temples of which now just one remains.1 villa 1hr 5mins Palermo
The charming old fishing village of Ganzirri is located on the north-eastern tip of Sicily, where the Tyrrhenian and Ionian Seas meet in the straits of Messina.1 villa 1hr 30mins Catania
The popular port town of Licata is located on Sicily’s beautiful south coast. Licata has been an important harbour since Roman times and over the years was a major crossroads for the corn and sulphur trades.1 villa 2hrs Catania
The pedestrianised old town centre of Marsala offers a variety of good restaurants, bars and shops and there are many historical sites and buildings to visit.1 villa 20mins Trapani
Modica is characterised by its beautiful architecture including churches, palaces, and beautiful 18th century baroque style buildings offering the perfect place for a leisurely stroll under the warm sunshine.1 villa 2hrs Catania
Enjoy a relaxing cultural break in the historic town of Patti. Imagine beautiful beaches, backed by rocky cliffs and you’ll have an idea of what the scene is like here –one of the most attractive in Sicily.1 villa 2hrs 10mins Catania
Rosolini is a small village located in the agricultural countryside just 40kms away from the bustling and popular city of Siracusa where there are many shops, bars and restaurants.1 villa 1hr 20mins Catania
We have chosen a selection of 20 villas from our full list of properties in Sicily. Find the perfect villa below:
Castelvetrano Selinunte, Sicily
The cuisine of Sicily is Italian in style, with distinct Greek and Arabic influences gained throughout the island’s history. Fish, olives and broad beans offer hints of Greece – particularly on the east coast that borders the Ionian Sea, whilst the use of apricots, rice, saffron, couscous, sugar and citrus offers comparisons with North African cuisine. Some of the best known Sicilian dishes include arancine (fried rice balls filled with meat), couscous al pesce (couscous with seafood), and caponata (a salad with aubergines, olives, capers, and celery). Sicily is also particularly well known for its excellent desserts that include Cannoli (pastry desserts filled with ricotta and sugar filling), Frutta di Martorana (marzipan and almond fruit shapes), and of course, gelato. All of this can be enjoyed with a delicious glass of the excellent Sicilian wine – the island has more vineyards than any other part of Italy.
All over Sicily you will find historical sites that hint towards the island’s rich and diverse past. Evidence of Roman, Byzantine, Islamic, Catalan, and Greek influences – to name just a few – are still visible in abundance across Sicily. The island’s strategic position on the Mediterranean trade routes has been coveted by many different rulers over time. Some of the fascinating sights to see include the Greco-Roman amphitheatre in Taormina on the east coast of Sicily, the Baroque architecture of beautiful Catania, and the many historic sites of ancient Siracusa. These include the temple of Apollo, temple of Olympian Zeus, Roman amphitheatre, and the 7th Century cathedral (which actually stands on the remains of a much older building!). Wherever you go in Sicily, you’ll find a wealth of sites where you can delve into the rich and varied past of this captivating island.
Sicily has a diverse coastline of fantastic sand and pebble beaches, interspersed with sections of dramatic cliff face and undulating rocky coastline. Even in summer months, it is possible to find quieter beaches in certain areas of the island, with plenty of room to relax. Bustling coastal holiday resorts mix with larger ports, and tiny, tranquil fishing villages. A great selection of both sand and pebble beaches are to be found on the east coast around Catania and Siracusa, whilst there are many popular pebble beaches around the resort of Taormina. Facing across the water to the Aeolian Islands, not far from the port of Messina, you’ll find a number of great sandy beaches. Further along the north coast, the resort of Cefalu also has a wonderful, long sandy beach.
Sicilians are a welcoming and friendly people who are proud of the island’s rich cultural heritage. A huge amount of festivals and events take place throughout the year, where locals and visitors alike can really feel part of the community and soak up some of the Sicilian traditions. Towns and villages large and small each have a patron saint, celebrated in varying different ways each year, with events such as processions and fireworks. Good Friday sees atmospheric masked processions that take place all over Sicily. The island also has a great number of food festivals celebrating the delicious local produce grown in different areas – giving you the opportunity to enjoy some of the typical Sicilian specialities. Outdoor music events are popular during summer months, including the wonderful Greek theatre productions that take place in the Greco-Roman amphitheatre at Siracusa.
Sometimes even the best of us need a little inspiration. Here are some recommendations from us to help you find your perfect holiday
Whether swimming in the sea or sunbathing on the sand, take advantage of a property located close to the beach.View Villas
Whether its for family fun or just a few lengths in the morning, enjoy all the space and freedom that comes with a large pool.View Villas
Our smaller villas are perfect for couples offering all the space, privacy and freedom to enjoy a fantastic holiday just for two.View Villas
From neighbouring properties to stand alone villas that sleep up to 20 people, there are plenty of options for large groups.View Villas
Take in the wonderful site of the surrounding area from the comfort and privacy of your own villaView Villas
Chill out in our air conditioned villas - respite from the midday sun and a guaranteed cool and comfortable nights' sleep.View Villas
Take a look at the added entertainment on offer at these fantastic villas - and perhaps swap the swimming pool for a pool table!View Villas
Free Wi-Fi connectivity makes it easy to plan your holiday itinerary - or show off your fantastic villa to your friends back home.View Villas
Finding the perfect beach in which to unwind is not easy. Let us help point the way with our interactive map:
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The details displayed are for general information purposes only and were correct as at the last updated date. Please note that details (including opening and closing times) may change. In particular, some facilities may only be available during high season. Attractions are not connected to James Villa Holidays and we do not endorse or recommend any supplier or attraction.
*Whilst wheelchair / disabled access (where stated) is deemed good in our opinion, it may not be compliant to Disability and Discrimination Act standards - for more detailed information we suggest that you contact the local tourist board.