Up the Steps from Via Atenea


If you’re in Agrigento, follow the set of steps off of Via Atenea. Once you get to the top (There are many, many steps!), you’ll find the Monastero di Santo Spirito, pictured here, where, since 1290 Cistercian nuns have served the Church. Traditionally, the nuns were cloistered (meaning, they secluded themselves from the world). Today only a handful of nuns, all in their 80s, remain cloistered. That’s only half of the story of this special place–the other half is that the nuns are famous for the sweets they bake–the recipes of which are kept secret. If you order in advance, you can arrange to purchase some of those sweets. More on that in an upcoming post!

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