Siracusa Travel Guide

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over the Temple of Apollo to piazza Pancali

over the Temple of Apollo to piazza Pancali

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SIRACUSA in located in the south-east corner of the island of Sicily, and it is over 2.700 years old. The city is noted for its rich Greek history, because, for a short period of time, it was the main rival of Athens in Greece. Back then it was the capital one of the most powerful states in the Mediteranean. It has been continuously inhabtied since and this explains why some of the remains can be hard to spot.

The city was founded by Ancient Greek Corinthians, and Cicero said (of it): "the greatest Greek city and the most beautiful of them all". One of the most important Greek mathematician, physicist, engineer, inventor, ARCHIMEDE, was born in Siracusa.

In the modern day, the city is listed by UNESCO, as a World Heritage Site. Highlights are the Ear of Dionysius, the Greek Theater (in which each year are the performances classic: tragedy), Fountain of Arethusa, Temple of Apollo, Castello Maniace, many very interesting Church and edifices, and the  beautiful Cathedral (that was Temple of Athena): a baroque facade, an early medieval interior, but basically still the greek structure it was when it was erected as a temple to the greek Gods.

Its a good stepping off point for many of Sicily's places of interest whether you are travelling by car or by public transport.

Most of the train services from Messina going South pass through and, adjacent to the principle Post Office, which you see on your left as you pass over the ponte Umbertino going into Ortygia, is the main bus exchange from where you can get to almost anywhere in Sicily and to many of the major cities and towns in Italy. When I last checked there were even occasional services to Poland and Greece!

Siracusa is not a town to be hurried.

Sure there's a plethora of the obvious archiological and historical places to visit, but...there's more.

The tourist bureaux are staffed by the usual disinterested individuals that one finds in most of Italy's bureaucracies and are completely lacking in initiative. Certainly they lack even the most basic understanding of the diversity of needs of travellers and tourists: And worse, they are usually badly un-(or mis-)informed themselves.

So you'll need to dig about for yourselves for a lot of the good gen. and that needs a fair bit of time and a good pair of walking shoes. (And shady hat and sunscreen in the Summer!).

Contributors

August 11, 2008 change by nadsar (1 point)

June 12, 2006 change by giorgio

July 29, 2004 new by hpharmsen

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