A great tour for all people interested in art and culture, to visit two ancient towns rich of monuments in the South-East side of Sicily: Siracusa and Noto.
Noto is a wonderful Baroque town that gave the name to the Unesco heritage site “Val di Noto”. Totally destroyed by the 1693 Sicilian earthquake, the town was rebuilt using the local variety of stone characterized by the honey tonality and it became a masterpiece of Sicilian Baroque! Most of the buildings, including churches and noble palaces, follow one another along the main street and facades and balconies are all skillfully decorated by grinning masks, lion heads, putti and other embellishments. Unmissable is Noto Cathedral, dedicated to Saint Nicholas and built in perfect Sicilian Baroque style.
Then a short drive will lead you to Syracuse, an ancient town that exerted influence over the entirety of Magna Graecia. Even a quick stay in Syracuse must include a visit to the Archaeological Park that highlights the Greek Theatre, the Roman Amphitheatre and the Paradise Quarry. The resulting park contains some of the most extraordinary monuments that classical antiquity has left us and, given their degree of interest and importance, has few equals elsewhere in Italy. Then walk around in the Ortygia Island, the heart of the city center, discovering the ancient and medieval streets, the Dome and the Aretusa Fountain.