52 Reasons to Love Sicily | #51. Imaginative Ceramics

Throughout Sicily there are various ceramic centers that developed over the centuries around natural sources of clay. Of course, the raw material is one thing, but more significant, however, are the artists and painters that produce and imagine the remarkable designs and/or playful scenes found on plates, bowls, pinecones, heads of men and women, vases,…

52 Reasons to Love Sicily | #22. Strolls Through Public Gardens

Strolls through public gardens offer a different kind of exploring. Villa Giulia, an oasis of greenery in Palermo that was commissioned in 1777, presents you with a geometric layout accentuated with neoclassical band shells and allegorical statues. In the midst of the park, is the Villa Giulia version of the Genius of Palermo, or the…

52 Reasons to Love Sicily | #6. Royal Fairytales Are Real

Housed in the treasury of Palermo’s Cathedral, this work of art was created between 1220 and 1222. It was designed in Palermo in a Byzantine-Arab style and composed of gold, precious gems, semi-precious stones, pearls, filigree, glazes, and silver. According to scholar Jacqueline Alio, the Holy Roman Empress was interred wearing the crown. “It has…

52 Reasons to Love Sicily | #3. Palermo Goes To 11

Then there are ancient sites next to psychodelic baroque (Chiesa di Santa Caterina and Casa Professa, to name just two mind-blowing experiences!) next to Arab-Norman style architecture, next to Liberty Style… Oh, and royal palaces! Check out these mosaic-tiled lions (pictured) in the chambers of Roger II from the 12th century. And don’t forget Castello…