Greek Life: Siracusa

Day 12: Day trip to Siracusa (Syracuse)

I've got a feeling that somewhere in Sicily there exist stretches of sandy (maybe pebbly) beaches. We wouldn't know because we visited the island during Christmastime. So what does one do exactly while visiting Sicily in the winter? Why, see ancient monuments, of course!

Despite blizzard-like conditions atop Mt. Etna, our time in Sicily thus far has been blessed with balmy weather, and Siracusa is no different. We arrive mid-morning to take in the archeological sites located in the northern part of town, and the the first thing to greet us is the lovely 23-degree temperature (Celsius). "Well, hello to you too, nice weather. So nice to be in your presence again." Our first destination is the museum to check out a variety of artifacts gathered from several colonies the ancient Greeks had established on the island of Sicily. (If ever you've been to an archeology museum that houses ancient Greek collections, or even the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York for that matter, this museum will feel a bit like "been there, done that.")

The next stop is the archeological park that features an impressive Greek theater. We climb its steps and imagine the tales of comedy and tragedy that thespians once portrayed here. Closer to the park's entrance we find the remnants of an ancient Roman theater in somewhat shabby conditions. While it certainly is a testament to the presence of the Romans after the fall of the ancient Greeks, it's difficult to believe that this theater hails from the more recent civilization.

Our last stop is the offshore island of Ortigia. The park area isn't the only part of Siracusa with ancient treasures, as the island holds a couple of ancient Greek temples worth seeing. The first is in the middle of a square, flanked by banks and fashion chains. The other makes up part of the cathedral. The clouds are rolling in, telling us it's time to head back to our car. It's quiet this time of day and this time of year, but I imagine Ortigia in summertime bustling with tourists and locals alike, sitting at outdoor cafes and filling the squares with laughter and music.

Reliving my school days in drama class...

Go back in time by attending a performance of Alace by Sophocles or Phaedra by Euripides this summer at the Greek Theater.

The Roman Theater

Temple of Apollo, Ortigia

Temple of Athena, Ortigia

Piazza del Duomo, Ortigia


  1. WOW 23C! that is warm! Enjoyed your pictures and the last one was a favorite.

  2. I love ruins and old buildings, the energy is always so strong. I love your drama class photo!

  3. Oooh, lovely warm weather! And history is so much more interesting when you can actually walk right on it. I'm enjoying your posts!

  4. Thanks ladies! I'm so glad you're enjoying my Italy posts. I've got another 7 days or so still to go...


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