Syracuse is a treasure on the island of Ortigia, which rises from the blue sea like a precious gem, a pearl that glistens on the Sicilian coast. And, just like a pearl inside an oyster, it opens. This city is a dream suspended in time with a rich history spanning thousands of years. It offers travellers an unforgettable journey, discovering its decadent streets, savouring the salty wind and sampling the flavours of local cuisine.  What to do in Syracuse? In this article, we will delve into the secrets of the city and help you build your perfect itinerary.

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Syracuse unveiled: explore the charms of Sicily

Crossing the ancient threshold of Ortigia, you will find yourself in the historic heart of Syracuse, which captivates anyone who visits it. Ortigia is a kaleidoscope of styles and influences that have intertwined over the centuries. The churches, streets and squares are like chapters of a story that reveals itself with teasing reluctance, under the mysterious and dazzling Mediterranean light.

Before listing the things to do in Syracuse, especially on the island of Ortigia, our top recommendation is to get lost in its alleys. Amidst sand-coloured houses, Mediterranean blossoms and mystical balconies, you will be amazed to find yourself in such a magical place.

What to visit in Ortigia?

Once in Ortigia, you will immediately come across the Temple of Apollo resting silently, a testament to the ancient magnificence of Syracuse. The columns, although eroded by time, retain an eternal dignity and transport you back to a time when the city was an undisputed power in the Mediterranean.

Continuing on, you will reach the Duomo, with its Baroque façade silhouetted against the blue sky. Its architectural details recount a 2,400 year-old tale that transformed it from a Greek temple into a Byzantine church, a mosque and a Norman church.

Some other majestic sights are:

  • The Fountain of Arethusa, linked to the myth of a nymph transformed into a spring to escape unrequited love. Here, the sound of flowing water and the breeze shaking the papyrus leaves become the soundtrack to an eternally romantic story.
  • The imposing Maniace Castle, a fortress dominating the landscape, built during the Byzantine period and expanded under Norman rule. From its ramparts, suspended between land and sea, the gaze gets lost on the horizon of the Ionian Sea.

Ancient Wonders: Discover Historical Treasures in Syracuse

Among the things to do in Syracuse, you cannot miss the archaeological park, one of the most famous in the world. Exploring the ancient wonders of Syracuse wouldn’t be complete without taking a walk among these ruins. Here, worn-out stones murmur secrets guarded for millennia, in a surreal and fascinating atmosphere.

Don’t miss:

  • the Greek Theatre, an amphitheatre where the voices of the actors and the applause of the audience still seem to echo in the air;
  • (what was believed to be) the tomb of Archimedes, the genius of Syracuse;
  • the Ear of Dionysus, an ingenious and enveloping piece of architecture.

Marine Ecstasy: Relax on the Beautiful Beaches of Syracuse

What to do in and around Syracuse after diving into its history? Treat yourself to relaxing moments on the enchanting beaches of this part of Sicily. We recommend two locations:

  • Plemmirio Marine Park. One of the most picturesque marine areas in Italy, where beaches are hidden between sheer cliffs.
  • The beach of Fontane Bianche. The fine sand that slips through your fingers like silk is an irresistible invitation to lay out a towel and lie under the sun, while the gentle rhythm of the waves soothes you.

Culinary Delights: Enjoy Sicilian Cuisine in Charming Venues

If you are wondering what to do in Syracuse in the evening, the answer is simple: eat! The magic of Syracuse also extends to the table, where Sicilian cuisine emerges in all its magnificence.

Citrus fruits, tomatoes, fresh fish, sheep’s milk ricotta, mint and basil are the main ingredients of a gastronomic experience that will remain in your heart. Here are some dishes to try on your culinary journey among the restaurants that reveal the fragrant heart of Syracuse:

  • pasta con le sarde (pasta with sardines), a symphony of flavours that dances on your palate. The strong taste of sardines meets the sweetness of sultanas and the fragrance of wild fennel;
  • pasta alla Norma, a delightful combination of fried aubergines, sheep’s milk ricotta and mint;
  • Sicilian cannoli, with its mouth-watering combination of crispy shell, sweet ricotta filling and icing sugar.

Immerse Yourself in the Rich Culture and Beauty of Syracuse: Plan your Sicilian Adventure Today

What to do in Syracuse is a question with far too many answers. Its unique combination of history, landscapes and flavours awaits you for an experience that goes beyond mere travel. Plan your Sicilian adventure today, and be captivated by the promise of this city of extraordinary beauty. Every step will be a leap in time, every glance a new discovery, and every bite a plunge into the essence of Sicily.