Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Ragusa, Sicily

The train is chugging up the hill. Ragusa is pretty high in the hills. I smell diesel and I started to get sick. I'm a traveling pharmacy, I took half a Diphenhydramine pill to prevent getting sick from smelling the diesel fumes. It worked and I'm ready to enjoy the day exploring Ragusa. Some of the cities in Sicily is on higher ground. The scenery is beautiful as we approach Ragusa. We come into the station which is the new part of town, Ragusa Superiore. It is a sizable and modern town. We asked for directions to get to Ragusa Ibla which is our actual destination that day. Ragusa Ibla is on another hill and the old and new are joined by a little path through some stunning scenery. Since it was lunchtime, we decided to eat lunch first before proceeding further. We stopped a local, 'dove trattoria molto buono?' That's part of our limited Italian. The lady tried to give us instructions but we couldn't understand her. She waved to us to follow her and ended up taking us to a restaurant herself. It was a great restaurant, nothing fancy, just down home where the locals eat. I love these more remote towns, everything is for the locals, nothing touristy. After lunch, we proceeded down the hill of the new town and onward toward Ragusa Ibla. The view of Ragusa Ibla, as seen in these photographs, is spectacular. It is a very quaint old town, with narrow and winding alley ways. One just wander round and round these old stone houses and get totally enthralled. We reached the top which is a piazza surrounding the baroque duomo, very beautiful. It was fenced in and locked. We didn't get to see the inside. At the end of the piazza directly across from the duomo is a beautiful park with spectacular views of the hillside around it. It is such a pleasant place.
When it was time to leave, we didn't want to walk back the way we came, so we took the bus. I thought we could buy tickets on the bus, we couldn't. The bus driver waited while I ran into the nearby tabacchi to buy the bus tickets. The two customers ahead of me let me go ahead of the line. So nice of everyone. We made it onto the bus and back to the train station for our trip back to Siracusa.

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