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Sicily is a country unto itself, one that has survived many different conquerors. Romans, Arabs, French, Spanish, and the Bourbons, sent by Garibaldi, have left their mark here on the island's language, culture, architecture and history. There's everything here from volcano climbing, to spectacular beaches and harbors, to cities and towns filled with history. Trapani is known for one thing: salt. Since the time of the Phoenicians, Trapani has produced all the salt that is used in Italy. The windmills pumping the sea water into basins were built by the Phoenicians. The Saline Nature Reserve has recorded 170 species of migratory birds. In a ...

Sicily is a country unto itself, one that has survived many different conquerors. Romans, Arabs, French, Spanish, and the Bourbons, sent by Garibaldi, have left their mark here on the island's language, culture, architecture and history. There's everything here from volcano climbing, to spectacular beaches and harbors, to cities and towns filled with history. Trapani is known for one thing: salt. Since the time of the Phoenicians, Trapani has produced all the salt that is used in Italy. The windmills pumping the sea water into basins were built by the Phoenicians. The Saline Nature Reserve has recorded 170 species of migratory birds. In a 300-year-old salt-worker's house is the Saline Museum of Nubia, with exhibit showing the different stages of salt harvesting. Marsala, whose Arabic name Marsah-el-Allah means the port of Allah, was at one time Sicily's main port. Nowadays it is famous for the sweet dessert wine produced here. Wine may have put Marsala on the map, but it also has two excellent museums: Museo degli Arazzi with displays of sixteenth-century silk tapestries showing Jerusalem's capture, and Museo Marsala with archaeological finds dating back to the First Punic War.

Frances Folsom
About the Expert

Frances Folsom is the author of CitySpot Palermo, a contributor to the Reiskits guides to Milan and Italy's Lakes Region, and Thomas Cook's Independent Traveller USA.

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Frances Folsom for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    April-early June, September-October; avoid summer months because of blistering heat