Finally, some time to sit down and finish my last few posts on our journey through Sicily. As I start to write I’m transported back in time and place to the stress inducing driver’s seat of our dilapidated rental car, dented, banged up, fender barely attached like most of the bumper cars in Sicily.
We continued our way around the island as our grand voyage was quickly coming to an end. Our next destination was Marsala, Sicily for a five day stay before returning to our starting point in Palermo. We were pretty happy to have made it after a tumultuous drive leaving from our hilltop villa in Castrofillippo. It was highway more or less through Agrigento to Sciacca then a short detour to Selinunte to peek at the famous ruins and stop for lunch at a beach side cafe. But somewhere after Castelvetrano we missed a turn and Garmin Electra (my GPS) took us on another scary route up through the hills and into a desolate rural area. Not a house in sight and the sketchiest road we had been on to date. The road was barely driveable, more potholes than asphalt, parts of the road completely washed out and sinkholes that could swallow a bus. We were lost, time was running out for our due date with our new Airbnb hosts in Marsala and we were feeling more than a little stressed. I kept thinking that we’d be in big du du if something happened, if the car broke down in the 40-degree heat with no water and no working cell phone. I promised the lord that I’d never travel without a functioning cell phone again if we made it out unscathed, thinking about other travellers that meet unfortunate circumstances. We managed to make it just a little late, meeting our Airbnb hosts at the airport where they thought it would be easiest to guide us to the apartment.
Our stay was as sweet as its famous wine and we settled in on the outskirts of Marsala as our journey crescendo’d to its climactic ending.
The town is on Sicily’s most western, coastal point where we were now closer to Africa than Italy, about 500 kms directly across the Mediterranean Sea is the city of Tunis, Tunisia.
Marsala is known for its ancient ruins, its sweet wine, the salt pans and Stagnone Nature Reserve. The island of Mozia was highly recommended although we didn’t get a chance to visit as well as the Mothia museum. We did spend a day in the ancient town entering through the Porta Garibaldi; wandering its baroque streets, marveling at its fountains, elaborate churches and Spanish quarters.
We had an enjoyable lunch at a street café, people watching over a glass of wine and platter of local antipasto specialties. It was a relaxing day in town and we ended it at a beachside bar on the way back home to watch the sunset over a spritzer.
Another day was spent being lazy at the local beach, swimming, lounging and watching the locals playing in the sun. A perfect day by the sea. Tomorrow is an amazing day in Erice and the baroque city of Trapani, stay tuned.