Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto & Marzamemi

Evening in Noto, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com


After our quick jaunt over to Lampedusa last month, we spent a few days back in R's hometown before we jumped in the car with his brother and his brother's girlfriend for a mini road-trip two hours down the south-eastern coast of Sicily.

My brother-in-law is completely enamored with the Baroque town of Noto (a World Heritage Site) and insisted we take a trip there (his 4th of the year!), so we planned to head there with a few side trips. First we drove straight from Taormina to Fontane Bianche, the main seaside resort for the city dwellers of Siracusa, and checked into Residence Villa Eva, our B&B for the night. Given the hot, dusty drive down, we spent an hour at the pool cooling off before showering and getting ready for the short drive to Noto for dinner.

Sicilian hills  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
Residence Villa Eva, Fontane Bianche, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com


Driving up the cobblestone streets, we parked a block behind the gorgeous cathedral and walked down to the main street—and had a major sense of déjà vu, as it reminded both R and me of Medina-Sidonia, from our Andalucían road trip last September. The sun was just setting and all the early 18th century buildings were backlit, glowing as only buildings built with the care, attention and precision of that time can.

After days of intense heat, the soft, sultry breeze that blew along the narrow streets was so very welcome. So much so that we lingered on the church steps chatting and taking pictures before finally venturing down the street to dinner at Ristorante Dammuso.

Noto, Sicily building facade  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
Noto Cathedral, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
Made in Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
Noto arch, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
Fiat 500 + Antique Vespa, Noto, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com


The next morning, after breakfast on the residence's sunny terrace, we packed up and drove further south to visit Marzamemi, a pretty fishing village with a famous tonnara (a place where freshly-caught tuna is prepped for preservation and sale) built by the Arabs in the 10th century. The little town is very quaint and not at all showy, and the Arab touches are evident everywhere.

As the town was once home to Sicily's most important tuna business, it retains its claim to artisanal fishing and processing activities and is known today for its canned tuna, bottarga (dried tuna roe), and smoked swordfish—a mix of which we brought home for us to enjoy (after my pregnancy).

It was a little overcast the morning we visited, but something about the gray skies and moody ambiance suited the little town just right.

Piazza Santa Margherita, Noto, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
Piazza Santa Margherita, Marzamemi, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
Piazza Santa Margherita, Marzamemi, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
Piazza Santa Margherita, Marzamemi, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
Fishing boats, Marzamemi, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
Marina, Marzamemi, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com


I wasn't feeling too well (the aromas from the seafood delicacy shops were potent!), so after a little loop through the town I found a place to sit and enjoy the view while everyone else continued to poke about the boutiques.

Before leaving town we strolled over to da Carletto, for the most amazing sweet treat (on par with granite)—something called a cremolate, which I tried for the first time that day. It's a mix of gelato and granita and flat out incredible.

By the time we were satiated and ready to head back to the car, the sun had come out completely from behind the clouds and we decided to make one more stop before the drive home. We followed the curvy roads a bit north until we arrived in San Lorenzo, another beach town, where we found a beach club with comfy sun loungers (mostly for me, as the prospect of heaving myself up and down onto the sand didn't sound so fun). We settled ourselves in for the afternoon, enjoying the view out towards the mainland.

Marzamemi, Sicily views  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
San Lorenzo beach, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
San Lorenzo beach, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
San Lorenzo beach, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
San Lorenzo beach, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com
San Lorenzo beach, Sicily  |  Postcard from Fontane Bianche, Noto and Marzamemi on afeathery*nest  |  http://afeatherynest.com


When the sun was preparing to set we gathered our things and headed back to the car for the drive home, but when we were still about 45 minutes away our tummies began grumbling so we did the only thing that made sense—we got off the highway in Catania for cocktails and platters of arancini.

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One year ago: Gloomy gray Stockholm & October on Djurgården
Two years ago: Autumnal oil concoction

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XOXO,
J.