‘The Greatest Greek city and the most beautiful of them all’ (Cicero)

For the tourist, the city is split into two halves: the archeological park at the north west of the city, and the island of Ortigia to the south east.  In the central part of the city only the archeological museum and and lately the restitution of the Burial of Saint Lucy, by Caravaggio to the Church where it was first on display provide the reasons to explore the zone.  Much of Siracusa is blighted by huge expansion after the last war, which lead to the abandoning of Ortigia and a subsequent decline in its fortunes.  In the last 15 years, Ortigia has been rediscovered, and vast amounts of money invested to restore the island to its former glory.  Recently, the council has imposed a traffic free zone in Ortigia, relocated the market and bus station which for the few remaining full time residents has created problems. Largely now holiday homes and hotels Ortigia, while beautiful to visit, is fast becoming an open air museum with no real life of its own.

South East Sicily in English