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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Sicilia, Italy

Sep 21, 2018 - In Palermo for the day

Bags packed and loaded onto the bus, we headed to Monreale, originally planned for the afternoon but there was to be a wedding in the church this afternoon. Our guide explained that September is a very busy month for weddings as it is when the feast of St Rosalie is celebrated. Again this is a mix of the Norman and the Arab and the exterior clearly shows this mix. Inside the wonderful mosaics show a variety. Those around the altar are of the Byzantine style - more like icons. The paintings on the inner area shownscenes from the Old...

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Sep 21, 2018 - Highlights from the Boot and Ball Tour

As we finish our Boot and Ball Tour and gear up to traverse back across Sicily to spend a few relaxing days and nights at Jim’s place, we’ve uploaded some photos from Debra’s phone to highlight the tour. Will post some highlight photos from Karen’s phone later.

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Sep 20, 2018 - Palermo

The 165 k journey from Agrigento to Palermo took 3 hours- combination of winding roads and many road works to delay but I enjoyed the slower travel with the chance to see the countryside now preparing for sowing crops. Palermo is crowded with cars competing for space and many traffic jams, but some of its main streets are car free. Siesta is the rule here from 1to4 but not in the tourist part of the city where there are so many shops competing for the tourist dollar but more sadly people from the Middle East or Africa with small tables set...

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Sep 20, 2018 - Nearing the end of the Boot and Ball Tour

So here we are in Palermo Sicilia, second last day of our Boot and Ball Tour. What a tour it's been... beginning to think it's a little too fast paced for us lol I mean, when do we get time to do some washing??? Yesterday we arrived at the hotel in Agrigento, set on the "sea side". It was allegedly a Best Western... we'll leave it at that. Soon after arriving a thunder storm came through. Magnificent to watch but it put a dampner on our afternoon plans. We're to go and visit The Valley of the Temples. We were told the tour goes on...

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Sep 19, 2018 - Siracusa to Agrigento via Enna

Started the day after breakfast of a special orange juice which looked more like cranberry but had the orange tang along with a selection of cakes and pastries all home made-the lightest croissants ever. Our guide then took us for a quick tour of the cathedral which was originally a Greek temple dedicated to Athena and the outer columns are Greek, the inner more Romanesque. A side altar dedicated to St Lucia was interesting for as the patron saint her statue is processed on her feast day, Dec 13. Back to our hotel, cases on the bus and we...

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Sep 19, 2018 - Taormina

Departed Siracusa and drove up the side of Mt. Etna to as far as vehicles are allowed and then went a further 15 minutes up the volcano on a cable car. It's an amazing site. There are miles and miles of lava rock laying around from various eruptions. In the winter, there's downhill and cross country skiing. We're now in the beautiful city of Taormina for a couple of days. The city was quite crowded this afternoon with cruisers but the ship has just left so hopefully there aren't any more for a couple of days.

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Trip Journal


Italian Islands 2018

Sep 18, 2018 - Ceramics and mosaics

Travelled out of Siracusa this morning, initially following the coast road. On the coast there were many signs of industry, especially what seemed to Ben oil refineries and possibly LPG facilities. The countryside showed well kept agricultural activities, orange and lemon groves, olive groves and even plantings of prickly pear and pomegranate. Our destination was Caltagirone, the centre of the ceramics industry and after a srptroll through a lovely park we visited the Museum of Ceramics where ceramics are arranged in rooms according to the...

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Sep 18, 2018 - Among the Greeks and Romans

so... here we are, in Taormina Sicily. How did we get here? by ferry. It took us a whopping 30 minutes to get from Italy to Sicily... almost like catching the Stockton ferry! The days that follow have been busy, interesting and very very hot. Each day has been around 30/31 degrees. Day one we visited a little village called Savaco. It is set high in the hills. Why did we visit this little village high in the hills? For one thing, it was to test the skills of our driver "super" Mario. He managed to get our 40+ seat coach around some hair...

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Sep 18, 2018 - Siracusa

Drove to Siracusa and passed a glimpse of Mt. Etna. It was active which we are told is a good sign. Mostly white smoke with a bit of black. Once in Siracusa we toured some Greek ruins. We are having difficulty with the card reader for the camera. Fingers crossed we will be able to post some pictures again.

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Trip Journal


Italian Islands 2018

Sep 17, 2018 - They Put A Farm Here !???

After our ferry ride we are back on our not so old 18 seater buses to transport us to a farm for dinner. It would have been nice to return to the hotel then out to dinner but alas no... So we are all looking like bedraggled sheep dragging ourselves on to the buses with a quiet confidence that we arrive at a farm in good time. Our shepherd, Antonio is not on our bus and we dont have our headsets on. All of a sudden we pull up to a factory that does wood turning. The driver reverses into the carpark jumps out of his seat and tells us to get...

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Sep 17, 2018 - Sicily

A very early start as we had to leave the hotel at 5 am to catch the ferry in Valletta for a wo hour crossing to Sicily where we were met by our bus driver and guide. The first impression of Sicily was of citrus orchards, olive groves and vegetable growing, as well,as many trees and freestanding houses surrounded by gardens. Very easy on the eye after Malta which had little vegetation after a very dry summer other than prickly pear. Our first stop was Noto, known as the Baroque town, the original town having been destroyed in1693 by an...

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Sep 17, 2018 - Over On Capri

Today we catch a ferry to Isle of Capri. But first we must shop and wander the small alley ways of Sorrento. We purchase a few items....for ourselves lol - then make our back to our meeting point for the next part of our adventure. We find our shepherd and he leads us to our next mode of transport. Not so old 18 seater buses this time.These will take us to the ferry for our voyage across to the Isle of Capri. Debra and I are not doing any extra tours on Capri such as visiting the various grotto's - blue - green - white. We opt to have lunch...

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