ALL AROUND TRAPANI
Located at the extreme head of western Sicily, Trapani has got a very important cultural and natural heritage. The name of the city derives from the greek word ai???drepanonai??? that means ai???scytheai???, because of its shape, similar to a big scythe. Legend has it that goddess Cerere dropped her scythe while she was riding Pegasus the winged horse, and when it touched the ground, that land took the same shape. Trapaniai??i??s strategic position, on Mediterran Sea, has always attracted lots of old populations who wanted to conquer Mount Erice, very close to the city: from Greeks to Punics and Romans, until Spanish domination, Bourbons, and fascism. Nowadays Trapani is called ai???city of salt and sailingai???, famous for its salt flats (ai???salineai???) and windmills.
In the city centre there are lots of very interesting old churches, as S.Franceso Dai??i??Assisi, the church of Cappuccini, S.Pietro and Chiesa del Purgatorio, very close to Rosa dei Venti residence. One of the best churches is ai???S.Lorenzoai??? Cathedral in Corso Vittorio Emanuele road, inspired to several 14th centuryai??i??s architectural styles, originally designed and built by Trapaniai??i??s architect Biagio Amico.
PLACES AROUND TRAPANI
ERICE: A medieval village at 750 m on the sea level, it gathers more than 60 churches. The most important of them is the ai???Matriceai???, dedicated to the Virgin Mary (called ai???the Assuntaai???), and built in the early 14th century. But another wonderful attraction is Venus Castle with its stunning view on Trapaniai??i??s landscape.
FAVIGNANA, LEVANZO E MARETTIMO: Gems of Mediterran, stunningly awesome with their natural caves on the sea, and famous for the typical ai???mattanzaai??? (traditional tuna fishing).
ISLAND OF MOTHIA: An old punic town where Punics stayed before reaching Sicily in 8th century b.c. A little piece of land under the sea, connects the island to the mainland.
SEGESTA: A mythological location, strictly suggested to art and history lovers for its big greek doric temple, built outside the cityai??i??s fortifications at the end of 5th century b.c, and its theatre in front of the sea.
CASTELLAMMARE DEL GOLFO: From its ai???Belvedereai??? itai??i??s possible to see the city from above, admiring one of the best landscapes in Sicily.
SCOPELLO: A natural paradise, a little fishermanai??i??s village rich in traditions. Here time has really stopped: a few houses, a public garden, one church: the sea stacks and the typical ai???Tonnaraai???.
LO ZINGARO: The first natural reserve founded in Sicily. It consists of a 7km awesome uncontaminated bay in front of Castellammareai??i??s gulf, mountains around it and headlands on the sea.