We started our trip to Sicily today. I'll do another trip log if there is any interest? Please let me know...
I'll provide the same caveats as on our winter Spanish trip: we tend to travel straight to our destination rather than stop and sight see en route. As such there will be a fair amount of 'mile munching' as its 1,900 miles from where we live according to Google.
We overnighted in Cirencester at the C&MC site. This is a handy stop for us as it takes us around 4 hours to get here with stops for coffee and lunch. We filled up with diesel when we got here as well as the large Tesco is handy for that. Also our son works in Ciren, so he popped in to say hello too.
It's the point of no return G. Know what you mean Jan but so close and have invested so much not to go.
It's like that at Sintra Portugal G. Queue, pay bit by bit to get to the castle and pay again to get in. It all mounts up to make you wonder if watching a Youtube video is better.
I took a bike ride up into the mountains yesterday as Mrs G was watching the Coronation. It started well enough until I turned off the main road to climb up and then the road rapidly became unmetalled and very steep necessitating me having to get off and push. Not ideal in 25 degrees and blazing sun!
After a few Km's though I was suitably rewarded as the road came back and the views were simply stunning...
There were also some random sculptures....
The main objective of my trip was a to visit this church. No prizes and no cheating (answer below) but can anyone recognise it from a very famous film?...
My reward to myself in order to replace my fluids. I also ate my roll that I had made before setting out whilst sat here...
* It's the Church of St Nicolo (Chiesa di San Nicolo) in the village of Savoca, where Al Pacino's character - Michael Corleone - got married to Apollonia.
We drove down to Naxos yesterday, which at one stage was the largest Greek city outside of Greece. It is now a very large protected archaeological area which you can visit. It was free entry yesterday but normally would be a very reasonable €4 each. Parking was on the road so my suggestion would be to avoid weekends as it was very busy and we were lucky to get a place quite close to the entry point.
It's a very large site and a very pleasant stroll however we thought it could have done with a bit more signage as to what we were seeing. Perhaps we just missed them.
The seafront. It is a lovely bay and you can see why it's a popular holiday destination. The black blocks are sea defences which look to have been cut from cooled lava...
We moved sites today to one west of Palermo. It was around a 3.5 hour trip mostly on the motorway, part of which was tolled. Aside from heavy traffic in/around Palermo, it was pretty clear. As is the way with Sicily there there were loads of tunnels.
It's an ACSi site so is €23 per night but there is no metered EHU (normally only the first 4kw is free and then the balance metered although many sites do not meter it). There are various size pitches to choose from which would suit small/medium size MH's but we are paying €2 more for a larger pitch. The EHU is only 6A and quite weak. You cannot book to stay here but I had some email dialogue with the site and was confident that we would get in.
The site reception closes between 2.30 - 4.30 and there is no entry during this time so worth remembering. We got here around 1.30 so were OK.
It's a very quiet site and has a rural feel to it even though its very close to the village and on the seafront. Reception were very efficient with English spoken. There is a small shop and also a small restaurant with a limited menu for food to eat in or take away. An hours free wifi is included as well although I forgot to get the code so haven't tried it yet. Mind you, the signal looks to be very weak at the back of the site where we are, so it may not even work on our pitch.
We are now on our last day at this site and overall I would recommend it. It's €23 pn ACSI rate plus €0.50 pp tourist tax. We took a larger pitch with a €2 per night premium but there are plenty of pitches of all sizes so would suit all sizes of MH (we are 8.7m long). There is no advance booking so my advice would be to get here before they close at 2.30 for 2 hours.
The reception speaks fluent everything it seems and are very helpful. They run trips to Monreale at €15 pp if you didn't hire a car or want to drive there. The on site resto is very nice albeit with slow service (freshly cooked tbf) but reasonably priced with hearty portions.
There is 6A EHU if required which is not metered like ACSI sites can be (i.e. you are not limited to 4Kw for free and pay for any extra). The showers are interesting in that they have a token system I have not seen before.
The local car hire place provided a good service (Isola Car Rentals). €300 for a Fiat Panda Hybrid for a week with unlimited mileage and including drop off at the campsite and collection.
The local town is walkable and a nice place in a mad, ramshackle Italian kind of way. Loads of small shops and cafe's; a rubbish supermarket but no need for it really with other independent shops. There are 3 larger supermarkets on the edge of town which are cyclable/driveable but for a larger Lidl you need to drive into the outskirts of Palermo...about 15 minutes drive away. The railway station ia 800m from the campsite with regular trains into Palermo (€6.20 pp return).
MOZZIES...bring mozzie spray as I was bitten to death staying at this site. I am always the one to get bitten wherever we go so am susceptible anyway but it was the worst it has ever been when staying here.
Yes, thanks. Tbh though Ray if I was to book this trip again I'd do 3 x 1 week stays: the 2 we have now but the third somewhere on the south coast perhaps near Agrigento.
There are quite a few things to see where we are now and we have a hire car coming tomorrow for a week. Given the traffic in Palermo though we'll get the train in there from where we are staying. The station is only 800m from the campsite plus the 2 main railway stations in Palermo are in the heart of the sights. Also its only €6 return for each of us so cheaper than driving and parking too I reckon.
This is the local village/town that we are staying at, which we had a bimble around yesterday. It's a thriving little place with a marina; daily fish market; and numerous small shops/cafe's etc. We had coffee in 2 places and in the second place our waiter (who was the owner's son) was a Sicilian American. He was born in the USA and goes between the 2 now as his parents have moved back to Sicily after 30 years in the USA. An interesting and very friendly chap was Claudio.
The local Torre di terra...
The church, which was a very peaceful sanctuary amongst the hustle and bustle of the town. We have found Italian/Sicilian churches to be less ostentatious than ones we have visited in Spain for example.
Segesta is only about a 40 minute drive from where we are staying and proved to be a real highlight of the trip to date. It wasn't too busy when we got there so managed to park - for free - immediately at the entrance, There was plenty of room here for MH's too (and several were in). If this area is full I think that there is a larger parking area down the road which operates a shuttle bus to the site. There is an on site café for coffee, water or a sandwich for lunch.
Entrance was €8 each for a joint visit ticket. This enables you to visit the site plus has a shuttle bus ticket to take you up to the Teatro, otherwise it's a 1.25Km walk up very steep hills.
We found this place to be quite breath-taking, especially the sheer majesty of the temple and the wide sweeping views from the teatro. The temple and the teatro are the main attractions but there are numerous other ruins too.
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