Italy Part 3 – Sicily

From coast to coast

Advertisements

December 2017

We left Cagliari, Sardinia’s capital, on the weekly ferry towards Palermo in Sicily and arrived early in the morning. The weather was clear and cold as we rolled down the ferry ramp and into the city. We did not book any accommodation and only had a few hours to see the city before heading towards more rural areas to pitch our tent.

DEB2FF6C-58D3-4F5D-94D9-BE3DC8B5B3BE

C3CEC444-95A7-448A-9643-20CCF31A3DB3

1DC6F7D7-B2E9-4E8F-BFE2-6EB79271DA70

We visited the Cattedrale di Palermo and Cappella Palatina, two gigantic churches filled with impressive murals, suspicious amounts of riches and a lot of holy clutter. We didn’t feel particularly guilty not leaving donations next to the presented gold and silver treasures.

0BF605E6-A3C3-400F-A203-2DF4B2EF8504

The impressive landmarks were connected by busy but charming streets and we would have loved to spend more time in the city. Instead, we headed East, racing the setting sun through traffic and over dirt roads to find a suitable site. After 60km and with the last light of the day we set camp on a small beach between motorway and industrial harbor. That night we dreamt of Sardinia’s clean secluded beaches.

A8D4576E-8DC0-458F-B5C4-CC6191C422C8

9F64830E-3105-4982-B2BB-E31F08AA5496

The next day we followed the motorway inland only to find out that our navigation app’s idea of rideable “hiking paths” and “single tracks” was quite different to ours.

C96958ED-FEE7-421B-A10D-BD05DCE88844

F49E2504-4E9A-4CD7-9970-2417C3AE80C3

We climbed hills, crossed rivers (multiple times!) and slowly progressed into the mountains of central Sicily.

1593F188-6D1F-4C57-BC6E-3AE0B9035C1E

69D32725-3F6E-4710-9873-80DACF3B76F8

0BCBA603-62C6-48DF-95E2-4D3548857CF6
Surprise! End of the road

Slowly the landscape changed and littered streets turned into quiet mountain roads, surprising us with new views around every corner.

02E595C4-8085-4391-BCCA-EA31814A0036

F1F9CDD1-C34C-4933-BC4C-EFE4F6026BD0

B60AE9E2-1BB0-4D4E-BC4A-37EBCC992352

Up here the temperatures were freezing and one day we got rained in, spending 24 hours in an olive grove. We were ready to drop down towards the East coast, Catania and Europe’s highest active volcano.

B9B0748F-F0EE-44C7-BABA-1CF1E73427C9

Shortly before reaching our final Italian destination, we decided to camp at Lago Pazzillo, judging from the map one of Italy’s biggest lakes. But what we found upon arrival stunned us…

9E32B699-BE74-4010-A840-4BBE6C5A9E5B

4C495761-7828-43D5-A14E-476F19C07FE9

94A945FC-612E-4D0B-BF33-BB69098C7C8E

The lake was completely dried out, leaving a huge crater behind and giving the whole area an outer-worldly feel. After a long wander, we continued to the East coast, where we stayed near Catania in a penthouse with an incredible view of Mt. Etna.

D6497E7B-0789-4EA1-85EB-A8D16F8C40CA

On our last day, we ditched our bikes a final time and hiked around the volcano, taking in the dried lava streams, the big ash fields and the views of the newly formed coast (about 2000 years ago).

8D4264F7-B5C1-4732-B758-D3AFFA3EBC79
Started at the first lava formations in the ocean and…

BAF4B81F-95DF-4AE1-80EA-CA9C79A6F240

1B3C9FCB-DCFA-40CE-B436-97CB3D4CFEE0
… made it (almost) to the top.

We packed our bikes for the night train, thankfully didn’t get kicked off despite building a fort in our cabin with our bike boxes, and traveled back to the UK.

2317148A-27CC-44F9-89E0-2D8B6CD4F43E

We are taking a break celebrating a friend’s wedding and Christmas with our families before heading off once more in January. This time we will go far… See ya’ll next year.

9656501E-1D69-433C-BE81-13185785679D

One thought on “Italy Part 3 – Sicily”

  1. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We are just back from a 2month trip with the campervan. Starting again Ende oft Februar next year für another 2 month. Kisses we 4 from Monchique

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s