On April 3, six months have passed since the beginning of our trip. At about the same time, the Golf meter exceeded 15,000 kilometers since our departure from Poland. We spent these two great moments in north-western Sicily, on the Tyrrhenian Sea.
Last week we visited the largest port in this part of the island – Trapani, located near the mountain village of Erice and the beautiful inanimate nature reserve of Monte Cofano.
This part of Sicily is exceptionally beautiful due to the proximity of the clear, sparkling blue Tyrrhenian Sea and the nearby stony, threatening-looking hills. Golf looks great in this scenery.
We started the tour from the port of Trapani. The city was founded in ancient times as a port for the mountain Erice lying a dozen or so kilometers away. The long, narrow peninsula conditioned the way in which the city developed in the following centuries.
We are already in the city center located at the edge of the peninsula.
The dome of St. Francis of Assisi monastery was looming from a distance in the panorama of the city. Up close, the temple does not make such an impression, because it is tightly pressed between the walls of nearby tenement houses.
Going further towards the main street of Trapani – Via Vittorio Emanuele, we pass, among other, the Baroque Chiesa dell’Addolorata church.
View of the beautifully restored promenade in Trapani. The city center looks really impressive. Palaces, churches and tenement houses are renovated and the streets are full of greenery. At this time of year there are still a few tourists, because the season in Sicily begins in May.
Below is the tower and facade of the main temple in Trapani – Cattedrale di San Lorenzo Martire.
Corso Vittorio Emanuele crowns Porta Oscura e Torre dell’Orologio.
Just behind it is one of the most famous monuments of Trapani, the church of Saint Augustine with a beautiful stone rosette on the facade.
A last glance at the historic center and we go towards the city park.
Villa Margherita Park is full of examples of vegetation from many parts of the world. Thanks to the excellent climate of Sicily, the local gardens are full of different exotic trees and shrubs.
In the park we also met more and less known examples of fauna.
We spent the next day of traveling in the previously mentioned, ancient Erice mountain. The city is located in a straight line a few kilometers from Trapani, but you have to overcome the 750-meter height difference! Here is a view of Trapani from the walls of the castle in Erice.
And the Castelli di Venere itself, from which are such beautiful panoramas.
Erice did not lose anything from her medieval charm. The streets are still paved, stone houses, mostly ungraded. No traces of modern architecture.
We reach the Town Hall Square, which is already filled by a few tourists. In the season, it is difficult to find a vacancy in cafes and restaurants located here.
Shops with „handicrafts” (most often made in China) are already attracting less intelligent visitors.
A little off the beaten track is the main Erice temple – the Duomo dell’Assunta cathedral.
Right next to one of the surviving gates to the city, Porta Trapani.
For a moment, we go outside the city walls to get to the viewpoint located at the northern end of the hill. A picturesque path leads to him.
It was worth choosing it to admire the following views. On the left you can see the edge of the Tyrrhenian Sea and straight ahead Monte Cofano (649 m above sea level) around which there is a nature reserve that we visited the following day.
Looking straight ahead we can see Valderice, a small town located at the foot of the hill where ancient Erice was located, which we liked very much due to the beauty of the monuments here and the views stretching from the summit. Golf was not so happy, because the entry to the city required overcoming dozens (!!!) of steep serpents.
At the end of the week, we left a trip to the Monte Cofano reserve. A well-marked trail leads to it through the flowering meadows where we heard the bells from time to time telling us that sheep are grazing somewhere here.
The goal of our trip – Monte Cofano.
The sandy road stretched for a long time among the almost deserted, wild areas.
Almost uninhabited, because in this remote area somebody lives.
Next to the old defense tower, which is part of the medieval fortifications, there is a small farm and owner probably is fishing.
The further into the forest, the more wild and hilly. The path once climbs up, once it descends, all in the wild, untouched by human nature.
We reach the point where we finished our tour of the reserve, the cave Grotta del Crocefisso and the eighteenth-century chapel Edicola di San Nicola.
On the way back we will again take a look at Monte Cofano, whose top was covered by scary looking clouds. Someone seeing the mountain for the first time could think that it is an active volcano.
The path continues through the meadows and leads to the Zingaro Reserve on the other side of the San Vito peninsula.
However, we did not go any further, we only went back to Golf, which after the hardships of the previous day got one day off.