Known as „Pearl of the Greeks“ Syracuse (ital. Siracusa) is located on the southeast coast of Sicily - a fascinating UNESCO World Heritage Site with a cultural diversity spanning 2,700 years of history. During the ancient world Syracuse was a city of millions and one of the mightiest and most glamorous metropolises of the Mediterranean world. Today it is a vibrant provincial city with 123,000 inhabitants.
Almost untouched by modern times you find the Parco Archeologico della Napoli, an archaeological site designed as a park and located in the new part of Syracuse, and the winding old town on the Ortygia (ital. Ortigia) peninsula.
The most important sights are on Ortygia and form a picturesque ambience amidst Greek, Roman and Baroque architecture. The oldest testimony from the beginnings of the city are the remains of the Greek temple, the "Tempio di Apollo". Around Piazza Archimede there is not only the famous fountain "Fontana di Artemide" but also numerous noble palazzi.
Through winding alleys, the path leads to "Piazza del Duomo", the highest elevation in the old town with the religious centre of the city, the "Duomo S. Maria delle Colonne“.
Absolutely worth seeing is also the fortress "Castello Maniace" at the southern tip of the peninsula, built in the 13th century to protect the port. From here you have a wonderful view over the coast.
In summer it is advisable to visit the Parco Archeologico in the morning hours when the sun is not yet too high in the sky. Ortygia, on the other hand, is fascinating in the afternoon when the sun bathes the facades in honey-yellow light.
Those who want to admire the splendour of Ortygia from the sea side should take a boat trip around the island and to the nearby caves.
Especially in the high season it is advisable for day tourists to park outside the peninsula Ortygia, e.g. on the parking lot: Molo Sant'Antonio (via Bengasi/via Rodi) for €1,00/hour, only 5 minutes walk from Ortygia.
Viale Teocrito 66
Opening hours: daily 9:00 - 18:00 (closing at 16:30 during the acting season)
Entry fee: €10,00, reduced €5,00, combined ticket Parco + museum "Paolo Orsi": €13,50/ reduced €7,00
Piazza Duomo 5
Opening hours: 07:30 - 19:30
Entry fee: €2,00
Via Giuseppe Maria Capodieci 16
Opening hours: Tue - Sat 09:00 - 19:00, Sun 14:00 - 19:30
Entry fee: €8,00, reduced €4,00
Via del Castello Maniace
Opening hours: Mon 14:30 - 19:45, Tue - Sun 08:30 - 19:45
Entry fee: €4,00, reduced €2,00
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