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Report 2005: Naples & Sicily: Warmly Welcomes Travelers

By teezee from US, Spring 2012

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Page 7 of 13: Fontane Bianchi - Arrival at Vacation Home

Off we went to find our house which was about 15 minutes outside of Siracusa in a little beach town called Fontane Bianchi. We missed our turn for the house at least three times (the directions seemed clear!!!) and exhausted ourselves running around in circles until we finally made the right road decision and saw the right street sign. The frustrations fell away when we saw the lovely house with its gorgeous gardens, terraces and sparkling swimming pool, and the remainder of our party already arrived. This is a marvelous house, found through, and extremely comfortable for the eight people who shared it. At €450 per week per couple (€1800 for the house) it was an excellent value. The location is fine for visiting Siracusa, Noto, Avola, Modica, Ragusa and it was an oasis to return to each day. We were joined by our remaining four friends and the eight of us happily settled in.

Once settled and without the baggage of either suitcases or driving frustrations, each having been left behind, we headed off to the little town of Cassibile, about five minutes by car, and full of very nice shopping to hunt for our dinner and stock the house. On Via Nationale we found a fine bakery, several salumerias, a fish store (open only in the mornings), several supermarkets, a wine shop, and a market run by Salvatore who loves Sicily (we are, he said, Sicilians here and not Italians) and keeps a fine selection of local wines, oils, cheeses and fruit and is a charming man. Indeed, every place we shopped we found patient, good-natured people curious about American tourists and very willing to work out the Italian/English/gesture dialogue that serves as conversation. Dinner was simple and marvelous: the ubiquitous nero d’avolo red and grillo white (both very drinkable and very affordable) along with salami, ham, cheese, melon, tomatoes and the fruit which was at the height of its ripeness to our good fortune (cherries, apricots, oranges, strawberries, watermelons, peaches, all so much better than at home that you knew you would be thinking of the flavor of each one when you ate their ersatz counterparts on returning home).

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