The Cloisters Of Monreale

Norman King William II, “The Good” (1153-1189), commissioned Monreale Cathedral in the late 12th century. The cloisters were built in the Arab Norman style in the early 13th century by Venetian artisans. Today, the cathedral is part of the UNESCO site that features nine Arab Norman monuments. Its cloister boasts 128 columns, all possessing different…

Swimming In Sicily

During these gray days of January in the northeastern United States, I dream of summer in Sicily. Photos that I took of places I swam just months ago give me hope that it won’t be too long until I return to them. There are many different approaches to swimming in Sicily: beaches (both sandy and…

Say Yes To Sicily In 2020

Whenever I’m in Siracusa, I make a point to stop by the Antico Mercato in Ortigia to say hello to Angelo. Perhaps my roots as the great-granddaughter of fishermen from Porticello make me feel right at home in amongst the swordfish. TIP: Life is slower in Sicily, so when you are visiting friends and family…

It Looks Like Snow

Yes, it looks like snow, but this isn’t snow. In fact, I took this photo while hiking in Sicily in July! It is the natural wonder of Scala dei Turchi, or Stairs of the Turks, on Sicily’s south coast near Agrigento. The white cliffs pictured are made of a hard-mud material that is a combination…

Leave The Past In The Fire

Release today what you don’t want to bring into the new year! There isn’t a long history of celebrating New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day in Sicily. Only over the past century has it become a milestone holiday. Therefore, modern Sicilians celebrate New Year’s Italian-style–eating sausage (cotechino), grapes, and lentils. (Lentils, with their coin-shape,…