For our first weekend trip, we decided to visited the western side of Sicily- to the small town on a peninsula (Trapani), the medieval fortress town on the mountain above (Erice), and the butterfly shaped island nearby (Favignana)- pretty ambitious, but in the end we enjoyed it all at a leisurely pace! (such is the way things go in Sicily :))
We took the train for some euros and enjoyed the seaside view as we snaked westward along the northern coast. It was a pleasant ride, though the train stopped often and it took us about 3.5 hours to get there (2 hour bus ride is the other option). We arrived to the quiet, empty (not high tourist season yet), a bit rundown, but scenic town of Trapani early in the afternoon. Its such a narrow town that you can walk down the middle and look both ways and see the ocean. We wandered a bit because D was in great need of a fried fish sandwich, we eventually came upon a small local deli and D and X satisfied their seafood craving with smoked tuna sandwiches and I got my fix with a local cheese sandwich! We sat by the water, which was an aquamarine color, and ate our lunch happily in the calm sea breeze.
Next, we made our way to the funicular (gondola), which was to take us all the way up the nearby mountain to the medieval town of Erice. Here we all are before our funicular ride- about 5 euros, pretty steep… in ascent and in price.
Beautiful view from Erice of the Sicilian countryside.
We got a pass to see all the churches and towers in Erice. Here is their most famous church. We walked in, the church was majestic with white carved ceilings, and monks were singing, a very spiritual experience.
More views of Erice.
We climbed to a more secluded road and were blown away by the view we saw. Check out this background!
Very fortress-y, very steep medieval cobblestone roads!
We opted to have a nice dinner up in Erice rather than returning down to Trapani. We decided to try some Trapenese specialties. I got Pesto Alla Trapanese, a wonderful dish with an almond sweetness I didn’t expect and X got the famous cous cous dish, below. All in all a wonderful Saturday!