erice and san vito lo capo

I am finally done with my junior year of high school which means I can finish up my Sicily series! My posts will be a bit longer since I still have quite a bit to share with you all. I don’t have many stories for today, but I have a lot of photos, so I hope you enjoy seeing them.

Today I’ll be taking you along with me up a cable car into the clouds to an ancient town called Erice.

The views were never-ending as we traveled up this mountain. The countryside, the city, the ocean: we saw it all in about twenty minutes.

Once we reached the town of Erice, we walked for quite a while to reach the ruins of Castello di Venere. Can you believe these are all homes people still live in? I’ve said this before, but the preservation of architecture here blows my mind.

This is one of the most beautiful views I saw.

Sicily was in total bloom while we were there. You’ll see in my next few photos some of the most colorful flowers.

This is a photo of the exterior of the castle ruins. I saw more castles on this trip than I’ve ever seen in my whole life (and we only saw two)!

A map of Erice.

The next few photos are of the castle ruins. It was pretty cool, but we only walked around for about fifteen minutes as there wasn’t much to see. I loved taking photos of the flowers, though.

This is such a cool flower.

This is one of my favorite photos I took. The sky looks so perfect, and the layered textures of the buildings make me so happy.

This one, too. The stone walkway is incredible.

Another lovely and rusty balcony!

We walked leisurely through town for a while but had to speed up when a car began driving (down the insanely narrow streets) behind us! I hope they weren’t in a rush. 😉 We eventually escaped and headed to a bakery called Pasticceria Grammatico Maria

I could smell nothing but almond extract and coffee as I walked into the tiny shop. The glass display case held an abundance of cookies, cakes, marzipan, cannoli, and other Italian delicacies. I got a cannoli (cannolo, actually — I don’t know why Americans have turned everything plural!). I’ve never had anything like it. The cream wasn’t frosting-like; it was rich and a little grainy with chocolate chips scattered throughout it. The shell was buttery and flakey but not soggy like many of the cannolis I’ve had here in America.

We walked down the stairs to the seating area to eat our treats and were pleasantly surprised by the very large outdoor dining area. There were plants everywhere, and it felt like a total escape from the slight chaos and busyness within the town.

The woman who owns the bakery, Maria, was the sweetest old lady. She gave my teacher and our tour leader a copy of her recipe book. As we walked in, she said, “Buongiorno, ragazzi!” to us all with so much joy on her face. This bakery is a true gem and one of the best parts of the trip for me.

After our midday bakery visit, we had a few minutes to walk around and shop. I bought a couple things and came across the cutest little animal figurines in the window of one of the shops. I was so sad when I realized they were closed! 😦 I would have bought them all.

Too much charm in one picture.

We walked back to the cable car and boarded the bus once we returned from the clouds. From Erice, we headed to the beach in San Vito lo Capo! Here are some sheep chilling out in the grass on our way there.

This was the first time we actually visited the beach and got to relax on it! The mountain in the photo is Monte Monaco.

The water was a bit too cold to swim, and no one had brought bathing suits that day, so we all sat in the sun and enjoyed the calming water and blue sky.

We hung out at a beachside restaurant after sunbathing for a while. We ate potato chips and drank Coca Cola, and then we left and headed back to the hotel for the night.

Tomorrow, I will share stories from Enna. A domani!

 

 

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