If you want to get a glimpse of ancient Greece
in Italy, try backpacking in Siracusa. Siracusa is known for its
colourful Greek history and architecture, and is a grand 2,700 years
old. It was even described by Cicero as the most beautiful of all
the Greek cities and listed by UNESCO as a world heritage site.
You can breeze through Siracusa as if inside a giant museum. Much
restoration is going on in its historical sites. Make a beeline
for the Roman amphitheatre, the Maniace Castle, Detail of Palazzo
Beneventano Del Bosco, and Archimede Square. You should also visit
the Temple of Apollo, which is a curious mix of a Byzantine Church
and Moorish mosque. The legendary Fountain of Arethusa is located
on Ortygia Island. Legend has it that the nymph Arethusa took refuge
here when she was being hunted by Alpheus. If you have any energy
left, visit the Tomb of Archimede, the Temple of Zeus, and the range
of churches, basilicas, and cathedrals dating even as far back as
the 7th century.
There are a lot of Siracusa
youth hostels to choose from. The LoL Siracusa youth hostel
is a great place to start since it is located at the very centre
of Siracusa, a few minutes walk away from the Archaeological Park
and the Ortygia. The Bed and Breakfast is a unique Siracusa hostel
surrounded by a wide garden. Enjoy breakfast in a shaded garden
and then head to the free private beach nearby.
The Aretusa Vacanze is another hostel in
the city centre, very near the legendary Arethusas Fountain and
the famous Piazza Duomo. This is an apartment hotel with the most
modern amenities such as glorious bathrooms, a satellite TV, and
a private terrace.
The Dolce Casa is another great Siracusa youth hostel in a villa,
just five minutes away from the city centre, but surrounded by palm
and pine trees, vast gardens, and quiet scenery. This place is really
a welcome retreat from the city with its wide rooms and lounges,
private parking, great balcony and solarium.
The Piccolo Hotel Casa Mia is a cosy family-run hotel, and was once
a family home. The hostel is well-known for its hospitality and
the owners serve home-cooked meals, fresh pastries and delicious
home made jams. It also has a private courtyard near the Paolo Orsi
Museum and the Basilica.