Greek Theater Ruins in Sicily
Siracusa's Ortigia old town is home to plenty of traditional Italian architecture, namely the central Duomo cathedral. Cruise to Siracusa, Italy and explore deeper into the city's ancient past, whether at the Greek Theatre (which dates to the 5th century B.C.) or the Necropolis, burial caves that date back three millennia. Siracusa is also home to non-Roman travel attractions from just after the fall of the empire, such as the Byzantine-era Maniace Castle.
Sunny Day at Calamosche Beach
The various unnamed city beaches that surround Ortigia and Siracusa's main harbor are plenty inviting. Enjoy fine, white limestone sand and dazzlingly blue water. If you have a long stop (say, four to six hours), consider hiring a taxi to drive you south to more secluded beaches, such as Calamosche or Fontane Bianche.
Siracusa is full of beautiful churches, and though you might not consider the 20th-century Santuario della Madonna delle Lacrime to be among them, it certainly has the most interesting backstory. At this site, in 1953, a mass-produced statue of the Virgin Mary is said to have cried actual tears — a miracle, according to the Catholic Church.
Fresh seafood, not surprisingly, is the most delicious food in Siracusa, whether you savor simple polipo bollito, boiled octopus with fresh lemon wedges, or the spicier purpetti, which are grilled patties of ground fresh tuna with eggs and pecorino, infused with the flavor and aroma of cloves. Siracusa, like the rest of Sicily, is also famous for cannoli, rolled flaky pastry horns filled with sweet, fluffy ricotta cheese.
Whether at stalls in Ortigia's outdoor market or at shops you find as you explore the old city, you'll want to buy artisanal Sicilian paper, which is handmade from the Papyrus reeds that grow wild around Siracusa. Another must-buy souvenir from Siracusa during your cruise vacation is Nero d'Avola, a locally famous wine made from grapes grown nearby.
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