One Ostrich, Two Ostrich

The corridor of the Ambulatory of the Big Game Hunt at the Roman Villa del Casale in Piazza Armerina has been called a “map of the world,” by some scholars. Capped by two floor lunettes on either side, one representing Mauritania, a country in Africa, and the other India, the extraordinary mosaic scenes along the…

Wheat

Wheat is one of the key elements to understanding Sicily. For millennia, wheat was Sicily’s main agricultural product and economic engine. The Greeks cultivated grain from the time they arrived on the island 700 years before the Common Era. Demeter, goddess of grain and the harvest, was central to eastern Sicilians’ religion because of her…

Levanzo Wasn’t Always Lazy

The Egadi Islands, where we visited during day 3 of our Secret Sicily tour earlier this month, were the site of major battles between Carthage and Rome during the 3rd century BC. Levanzo, pictured, today, is a quiet, remote, sunny, sleepy island with gorgeous swimming spots. Back in 241 BC, however, for ancient Rome, it…

Splurge in Agrigento

This is the view from our hotel room tonight. On your trip, this is where you splurge on a 5-star hotel … in Agrigento!  Here’s what you are looking at: The Temple of Concordia is named for a Latin inscription that was found on a dedication marker unearthed in the vicinity of the archaeological site–i.e.,…

The Headless Roman 

This torso is part of an exhibition at Valley of the Temples in Agrigento. It displays findings from an archaeological excavation of the Roman forum that was conducted between 2012 and 2014. Now, imagine that you spent a lot of time and money creating this statue of the current governor or prefect. Then imagine that…

Temple of Harmony

The magnificent Temple of Concordia is named for a Latin inscription that was found on a dedication marker unearthed in the vicinity of the Valley of the Temples archaeological site–i.e., a marker not associated with the temple; however spirited archaeologists took the text on the marker that said something to the effect of “dedicated to…

Temple on the Ridge: Enchanting Sicily, Day 4

Agrigento’s archaeological site Valley of the Temples is 13 square kilometers. It contains eight different archaeological finds–five of which are temples. Pictured on this ridge is the outstanding Tempio della Concordia. Come tour this UNESCO World Heritage site with me this September on Day 4 of Experience Sicily’s Enchanting Sicily tour. Contact me at experience_sicily@yahoo.com…