Sleeping, Eating and Drinking
Avete una camera doppia per due notte? Il e possible cenare? These two sentences helped us a lot to find a bed for the night and something to eat. With two exceptions we always stayed at agriturismi. All of them were outside the cities in peaceful and relaxing environments. We took care that they offered dinner and enjoyed very good meals with three or more courses. Here is an address list where we stayed.
We liked the agriturismo Don Mauro in Floridia near Syracuse most. The owners Anthony and Heike are very kind and speak German and English fluently.
The room was nice and had everything we needed (modern bathroom, even a fridge). But more important, in the evening the guests and sometimes Anthony or Heike met in the barbecue/self-cooking area for a glass of wine to exchange the stories of the day.
We didn't find a complete list of all agriturismi in Sicily in the internet though there are many web sites that list some of them. The most concise guide on agriturismi in Sicily is availaible here. We also found the following sites useful:
- Agriturist: Lists only agriturismi in the province Syracuse, but with a graphical map
- Agritusmo e dintori: Does not list phone numbers, but prices and directions. Only some agriturismi are directly linked to by the site. Use the id field of the url to access the others as well.
- Guida Sicilia: Lists only addresses and phone numbers
We ended up to building our own list by hand for the provinces Catania, Syracuse, Enna and Ragusa. The list is not very well formatted, but did it for us.
All rooms were clean and most of them had plenty of space. Prices ranged between 42 and 56 Euro for half board per night and per person. Without dinner, it will be between 16 and 20 Euro cheaper.
In an agriturismo a typcial sicilian dinner is served that comprises usually antipasti, pasta, meat or fish with salad and a dessert. Sometimes bitters and coffee are also offered. In contrast to restaurants, hungry cyclists may get a refill of pasta without asking for it. Water and house wine are always included.
However, you cannot choose your courses. Mama cooks just one meal per evening. This is different to a restaurant, but we see it more as an advantage. If it weren't for an agriturismo in Sardegna, I would still not eat olives. And they are just so delicious! To be honest, I am a poor eater in the cantine of my company, but never had this problem in an Italian agriturismo.
More of a problem is that dinner is not served before 8:00 or even 8:30pm. Unless you go in a restaurant for tourists only, you will experience the same dinner times there as well.
Breakfast is just as dinner typical Italian, i. e. breakfast is not very satisfying. Sometimes you get only (milk) coffee or tea with cookies, mostly white bread and marmelade is served additionally. We simply had a second breakfast between 10 and 11am. :-)