Sicily is a great place to visit if you are going on holiday. The Mediterranean island has incredible beaches, historical sites, and a stunning countryside. If you only have a week or two it is best to explore either the East or the West. Here is a guide to discovering the magical eastern half of Sicily. A great place to start is to get a holiday rental in Taormina that you can easily find through local resources and go on excursions from your beautiful villa.
Begin your stay in Taormina, a tourist destination with lots of lovely piazzas and incredible views of the sea. This is a great place to get out and stretch your legs and to enjoy a nice granita in the hot sun. There is also a Greek amphitheater that is the second largest in Sicily. In the summer months you can even catch a live concert in the same seats filled by people since the 3rd century AD. From here make your way to see Mt. Etna, a still active and ancient volcano that is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is a beautiful area with incredible views of the volcano. If you make it during an eruption you will have an amazing experience. Another place within reach from Taormina is Aci Trezza. This is a beautiful spot to escape the tourist crowds. The quiet seaside town near Catania has beautiful rock formations along the ocean making it a great place to relax and swim. A must-see in Eastern Sicily is Syracusa, an ancient city with incredible architecture from ancient Greek ruins to baroque styled buildings. Once a powerful city state, there is plenty to see around the town if you simply explore. If you have time for a longer excursion be sure to see the Aeolian Islands. These small beautiful islands have incredible architecture and black sand beaches. Each island has its own personality making them great for a day trip or two hopping from island to island.
• Written in conjunction with Mary Johnson