Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Piazza Amerina and Enna

Yesterday Les and I took a drive to Piazza Amerina. We took the long way through the hills. It was a gorgeous, clear day.

Les took this shot of the countryside with Mt. Etna in the background.

We reached Piazza Amerina around lunchtime and Les was hungry so we decided to explore the town first and grab some lunch. We ended up in a small piazza near the duomo and found a place to park.

I saw a wine shop while we were parking so we decided to check it out first. It was so much fun! The owner was very friendly and we tasted several wines over the course of probably a half hour. We ended up buying four bottles. The wine went straight to our heads because of our empty tummies so we found a nearby restaurant for lunch.

The place we stumbled upon was a great find! I wish I had thought to write down the name, but I think I could find it again if we went back. In addition to the normal Sicilian dishes you see on almost every menu here they had several creative dishes that intrigued me. I started with an appetizer of melted cheese covered with honey and pine nuts! WOW! For my entree I had penne with fresh ricotta cheese, saffron and mandarin orange zest. WOW again!

After lunch we walked up toward the duomo and explored the little streets in the historic center of town. So many beautiful old buildings!

The Duomo in Piazza Amerina

A steeple near the Duomo, it looked to be covered with an iridescent mosaic. Absolutely gorgeous!

Les got tired of looking at chrurches so we decided to see what else we could find. Our original plan had been to visit the Villa Romana del Casle but it was closed on Mondays so we decided to drive towards Enna and see what we could find there.

The Piazza Amerina Duomo and surrounding city

By the time we reached Enna, after a leisurely drive through the countryside, it was getting to be late afternoon. We made our way into the historic center and parked near the remains of a Norman castle.

The castle and rising moon (the little fleck of white, just above the wall in the middle)

We explored the castle for awhile and climbed to the top of the one fully preserved tower. The view was absolutely breathtaking.

After exploring the castle we decided it was probably time to start making our way home. We walked to the piazza del duomo, had a snack and a cafe before we hit the road.

Duomo in Enna

Tired, but happy after a long day of sightseeing, we headed home, following the directions from our GPS. Apparently our GPS is in bad need of an update because a drive that should have taken no more than an hour and a half ended up taking about two and a half hours..ugh. It really was a beautiful drive until the sun went down. Until then we had good humor about finding closed roads in the middle of nowhere and having to backtrack to an alternate route. We were so glad to be home by the time we got there! All in all it was a great day! There are so many beautiful places to visit in Sicily.

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