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Sicily or Calabria

#1
With seven days remaining in a two week Southern Italian trip, would it be better to spend the balance of our time in Sicily or stay on the mainland in Calabria. We will have a rental car after a few days in Matera. Will need to drop rental before a flight back to Venice to return home to JFK on the 18th.
 
#4
We begin in northeastern on June 1st for 5 days visiting a friend in Trieste. Then to Matera for 3 days. To Amalfi for two days. We are then open for 7 days. So, as the planner, I'm trying to decide between Calabria and Sicily or a % of both. Have you experienced both?
 
#5
I have. But only to the town of Roccella Ionica in Calabria. It is gorgeous and has a beautiful, sandy beach if you like beaches. The town is also compact and you wouldn't use your car much. Heaps of great places to eat too and the prices are CHEAP. Food is amazingly good and less expensive than the big tourist towns. That's all I can say about Calabria.
Where are you flying out of? If you go down to Sicily from Amalfi you are doubling back...
 
#6
Planning to fly from Palermo to Venice to fly back to JFK ON THE 18TH. THANKS for the suggestions. We do like nice beaches but figure we can find them in Sicily too. Good food and cheap is great selling point.
 
#7
You can, that's true. Though having been to both, I actually found the beach at Roccella to be better....:D BUT! I have 4 kids with me, so the beach is a big drawcard for us. Sicily has it's share of lovely beaches too. Palermo to Venice is a great idea. So will you drive down then from Amalfi or train? You know the whole train gets put on the ferry to go across to Sicily. It takes a while, but it's a cool experience. It stops in Taormina, so you could potentially get off there.
 
#8
For the ability to be independent wherever we go, we will drive south from Amalfi to maybe Tropea and Scilla and take the car on the ferry. Roccella, though very sweet looking is a little off the trail with the idea to spend the majority of our seven days remaining in Sicily visiting historical sites, eating wonderful food and for my wife, swimming...
 
#10
Have read some warnings about traffic and crime in Catania. Did you drive there and were you comforta ble there with your family's safety. The street food looks great but there are warnings about some of those same areas for after dark. Were you there for passegiata and dinner?
 
#11
I’ve been to Catania several time, traveling solo, and had no problems. I take care there as I do in any large city. I’ve walked to my hotel after dinner if the area has foot traffic (and occasionally when it doesn’t) but also get a taxi at times. The restaurant will call one for you. Do try to get to the area in front of the train station at night. It comes alive with food trucks of all kinds and takes on a festive feel.
 
#13
We didn't have any issues, but we were with locals all the time as we have friends there. The nights were pretty amazing with the central part of town closing down to traffic and restaurant tables being put into the street. Personally I wouldn't take a car to the city but that's just me.
 
#14
Cefalu' has a nice beach. It's a small village about 30 minutes east of Palermo by train. It is a a very Pleasant town. We spent two nights there a few years ago on a two week trip to Sicily.
 
#16
Here are a couple of pictures taken in Cefalu'. The first is the cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built in 1267 and Arab-Norman. The second is a view of the beach/center of town.
Sicily.JPG
Cefalu.JPG
 
#18
I was in both Sicily and Calabria last October. Tropea was nice but my favorite part of all of Sicily was Ortiga. Beautiful town, great day trips, wonderful restaurants, history and markets. Would go back anytime!
 

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