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With Siracusa being one of our favorite towns to introduce people to, it only seems right for our travelers to have a day to explore this picturesque town on their own. Starting off the day right with a bit of sleeping in, followed by a great breakfast, everyone drifted out of the hotel at their own pace, some on their own, some grouping up with fellow travelers. But most had one destination in mind – the Archeological Park of Neopolis – and they couldn’t have had a more perfect day for it!

Once a center of Greek culture, certain Sicilian cities – including Siracusa – were believed to rival and even equal those on the Greek mainland. Siracusa’s vast archeological park contains its greatest concentration of ruins. The Greek theater, the largest in Sicily, was begun in 6th century BC and the Roman amphitheater dates from 3rd century AD. Another section of the park contains a huge quarry that provided the stone for the building of the city.

20140428_133508Most continued their day by exploring the rest of the old town in Ortigia, taking in some great shopping, wandering through the winding streets, or even enjoying a prosecco at a cafe in the Piazza Duomo. Some even got to experience a wedding party passing through town!

We all reunited at the end of the day at a nearby wine bar for a tasting, which included a sparkling wine and the popular local varietal Nero d’Avola red wine, which we will be learning more about on our excursion tomorrow. We liked to think of it as doing our homework! After wine and snacks it was off 20140428_200620to a pizza party, and then gelato to finish out the day. Tomorrow will be a delicious excursion, full of palate-pleasing treats!