Ortigia, the heart of the city of Syracuse is a small strip of land one square kilometer. Its coasts are bathed by the Ionian Sea and the island is connected to the mainland by two bridges. A public bus goes around the island, but many tourists prefer to visit it on foot.
The history of Ortigia is secular, as evidenced by the buildings belonging to different past eras, since the ancient Greeks. In fact, here, the most important building is the temple of Athena, built in the 5th century BC.
Ortigia, the living room of nobility and elegance
In Syracuse there is no shortage of aristocratic residences built between the Middle Ages and the Baroque era. The island of Ortigia is considered the main stage of nobility and elegance; in fact, there are many traces left by the aristocrats, the eighteenth-century Palazzo Pupillo, for example. Going along via Maestranza you arrive at Palazzo Impellizzeri, dated 1894 and in perfect Rococò style. The whole historic center is full of architecture built in the aristocratic era, which give the visitor a wonderful show, for the decorations of the balconies, the late Baroque carvings and the floral finishes.
Art lovers will be able to admire the baroque style of the Duomo
Art lovers can admire the baroque style of the Cathedral, built in the 17th century, or the Church of Santa Lucia alla Badia, formerly a convent of nuns, which today houses a wonderful work by the great Caravaggio, “The burial of Santa Lucia”.
Other places worth visiting are the Fountain of Arethusa, considered the body of water of the island of Ortigia, and P.zza Archimede, center of the island, where you can admire the Fountain of Diana narrating the legend of Arethusa.
The small island never ceases to surprise the tourist with other attractions such as the Tropical Aquarium, which is located in a gallery of Spanish origin in Syracuse and which welcomes varieties of fish from all over the world, the Maniace castle, located at the edge of the island.
The products of the earth are at the center of Syracusan culinary art
A trip to Sicily is always a trip also in the colors and in the tradition of a cuisine that is unique in the world. Produce of the land is at the center of Syracusan culinary art, just think of the “scacce”, small focaccias stuffed with eggplant, tomato and sausage, cooked in the oven. In addition, many vegetable-based soups enrich the cuisine of the island. Fried pasta Syracusan style is another typical dish of these places, a must try: thin spaghetti, creamed with anchovies, olives, oil and toasted breadcrumbs.
However, it is the Syracusan pastry that conquers the podium!
However, it is the Syracusan pastry that steps on the podium! The tourist cannot help but taste the almond paste, made with the typical specialty grown in the area, the almond of Avola. The Syracusan “cassata” also has pride of place, different from the one produced in the rest of Sicily, because it is made with layers of sponge cake instead of icing. Here the lemon and almond granitas have unique flavors, hard to find elsewhere, and the same holds true for cannoli with yellow cream or chocolate, ricotta cheese, candied fruit and pistachios.
The ingredients used to prepare the desserts and the granitas are genuine precious local products, precisely because born from this land.
Viceré Sicily has been following the Sicilian tradition for years, using raw materials from the region, controlled and certified organic, thus offering the customer the best and high quality of true Sicily.