When I first started traveling throughout Italy after college–often alone, donned with only a backpack–I wondered where all of the young women were. Men were out and about in cafes and piazzas, and I’d see older women each morning doing their shopping for the day’s pranzo or lunch, but young women who were my age where no where in sight.
Once I started coming to Sicily to visit my family annually and I had spent significant time with my female cousins who were the same age as me, I discovered where the young women hung out. I discovered that they have their own secret spots! And what I further learned, is that these secret spots are sometimes the most breathtaking and where some of the most memorable moments occur.
This secret spot pictured above is where I swam two days ago with two of my cousins. It is on the Tyrrhenian Sea, off of northern Sicily between Bagheria and Santa Flavia (The two towns where my grandmother and grandfather grew up respectively.). To access it, you have to know exactly where to enter the pathway–under a certain tree limb and over a locked gate. Like many spots along Sicily’s northern coast, there is no sand and no beach here–the sea’s edge is made up of white stone cliffs that cascade into turquoise water.
These secret spots are my favorite–both for the swimming and the companionship. Someday perhaps you’ll join us!