Luxury-loving travelers, foodies and savvy wine lovers know this there is nothing quite like Sicily, the largest and most diverse island in the Mediterranean Sea.
This sun-kissed island just off Italys toe boasts miles of gorgeous coastline, magnificent architecture, roaring volcanoes, delectable food, excellent wines and historical sites scattered all around. And yet, tourist hordes is not a phrase you are likely to hear in this part of Italy yet to be truly discovered by international travelers.
As pointed out by The Independent, excellent Sicilian wine producer Mandrarossa and luxury vacation-rental company Select Sicily have joined forces to promote the territory of Menfishire, the largest grape-growing region in Sicily, through a partnership that celebrates the areas historical, archaeological and eno-gastronomic value.
Book a trip to this gorgeous Italian island now, then, before the rest of the world does. Here are five great reasons to add Sicily to your travel wish list this year.
Fascinating, multicultural historyFirst inhabited some 10.000 years ago, Sicily is an open-air museum and a joy for history and architecture buffs to visit at any time of the year. It boasts an unparalleled historical legacy, having been occupied by many cultures through the centuries.
Nowhere else in the world have Ancient Romans, Greeks, Byzantines, Carthaginians, Arabs, Phoenicians, Normans, Catalans, Bourbons and French left such a long-lasting mark both physically, in the impressive temples and cathedrals, and in the islands unique culture and traditions. The relics of this rich, fascinating and arguably incomparable past are just one of the many reasons to visit this epic island.
Whether you are more fascinated by Greek amphitheaters, Arabesque domes, Byzantine mosaics, Roman aqueducts or Baroque architecture, sun-kissed Sicily offers a range of archaeological treasures thats not easily matched.
Rich and varied cuisineThe Italian island of Sicily is a delight for anyone who loves fresh, farm-to-table food. As any fan of the Inspector Montalbano TV series already knows, the islands natural resources offer up delicious ingredients, from anchovies, swordfish, red prawns and sea urchins to olives, wild fennel, lemons, oranges, pistachios, almonds, eggplants, pine nuts, grapes and sweet Pachino tomatoes, just to mention a few.
Sicilian cuisine is rich and varied, combining local seasonal produce with flavors bequeathed by Arabs, Greeks, Normans and Spaniards.
Wine, wine and more wineSicily has a long history of viticulture and vinification. One of the major wine towns in Italys Mezzogiorno, Menfi is at the center of a premier wine-growing area, blessed with balmy temperatures and bright, golden-warm sunlight tempered by refreshing sea breezes.
About 350 feet above sea level, the ancient wine-making town of Menfi was designated a DOC region in 1995. The Mandrarossa winery is located in this lovely area, on Sicilys bewitching south-western coast.
Innovative and modern brand Mandrarossa makes sumptuous wines with indigenous grapes sourced from the gently sloping, verdant hills overlooking the glistening Mediterranean Sea, with Tunisias north coast in the distance.
Gorgeous beachesFrom blissful beaches where seafood restaurants serve fish straight off the boat to secluded coves, marine reserves, dramatic rock formations and deserted stretches of virgin sand, Sicily offers sunseekers and beach-lovers a slice of paradise.
Menfis vine-carpeted hills descend right down to the cobalt-blue sea, where theres an amazing array of glorious Blue Flag beaches framed by sweeping dunes. Menfis sandy coastline is still quite unspoilt. A wide, sun-drenched expanse of pretty much deserted golden sand runs for over 10 miles along the coast below this picturesque wine-making center.
Luxury accommodationSicily has become a hotspot for luxury travel. The Mediterraneans most alluring island offers a deliciously large number of deluxe luxury villas with spellbinding sea views. The popularity of villa vacations is on the rise, with more and more high-profile vacationers opting for self-catering villa rentals in exclusive locations.
Based in Castelvetrano, Select Sicily boasts an impressive collection of jaw-droppingly beautiful properties throughout the island. Located in Menfi-Porto Palo, Essence is a top-of-the-range three-bedroom villa which offers a seductive blend of bright, airy interiors, modern contemporary design and postcard-worthy views. It can house up to six guests.
For a larger group, you can head to I Cipressi, a luxuriously finished five-bedroom holiday home in the heart of Menfishire, which sleeps ten people. Its refined interiors, 32-foot long pool and scented Mediterranean gardens make it an ideal luxury retreat to enjoy an unforgettable holiday with your friends and family.
Around the same area is Villa Le Cicale, a modern family summer house which lacks for nothing. Utterly charming in every way, it is a good jumping-off point for exploring sunny Sicilys southwest corner.
To find out more about the properties available, please visit http://www.selectsicilyvillas.com.
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