Third Day: Ragusa and Modica
This is the 3rd day of our 4 day Sicily itinerary. The tour leads you to Mount Etna and Catania in the 1st day and Syracuse and Noto in the 2nd day. We are in the southeastern Sicily and we are discovering marveillous places (all accessible to disabled people) showing the best masterpieces of Baroque style. Come with me, I will show you other two cities ranked as Unesco World Heritage sites and don’t forget our appointment on next Friday to download the tour.
Ragusa and its two souls
The third day was brightned by the sun and the weather was ideal to discover Ragusa and Modica. These two cities are working hard to make theirselves excellent in welcoming tourists, therefore I suggest you to put them in your bucket list and visit them once.
During centuries Ragusa has developed in an extended shape as it is nestled in the plateau creating a grid of roads, which has kept in good condition until today, even if the city has been subjected to some transformations, like that one following the earthquake of 1693. After that the city was doubled: Ragusa Ibla is the ancient city and Ragusa superiore is the modern one. The new city is in contrast with the old city. In Ragusa Superiore the rationalism emerges because its buildings date back to the 1920s, when the Fascism period imposed right and essential lines. Whereas Ragusa Ibla preserves buildings in Baroque style.
The shape of Ragusa is given by these two centres (Ragusa Ibla and Ragusa Superiore) at the far end situated among the rocks. Its skyline is made of domes and church profiles. Visiting Ragusa means experience two souls in a body.
Even if there is still too much to do, Ragusa is the first Sicilian city to make accessible its city centre with the aim of welcoming more tourists. But the kindness and the hospitality of the Sicilian people come into play when there are architectural barriers.
Modica, the stone and the chocolate
It’s impossible visiting Ragusa without visiting Modica. Both cities are real stone jewels.
The Cathedral in Modica, like that one in Ragusa, is a brilliant work of perspective and modelling of the stone. They are both dedicated to San Giorgio Martire Cavaliere.
Modica is an example of the Sicilian Baroque. But since the period before the Greeks the stone was the main material used to build every single elements. From the churches to the votive niches, from the balconies to the modern buildings the stone is ever-present.
If you are on a wheelchair, you will have no problem to visit the Duomo di San Giorgio because it is equipped with a lift to enter in the church.
Modica is the city of chocolate too. Inside the museum dedicated to this “god food” you can learn the history of the cocoa from the pre-Columbian period to the Spanish domination in Sicily, discovering that Modica has to thank the Grimaldi family for importing it in the city.
In the museum are preserved wrappers of chocolate bars telling the visitor the events happened in the last 3 years. A multi-sensorial path where you need to use the smell and the taste.
- How to get to Ragusa and Modica: from Catania Airport take the Statale 294 direction to Syracuse and then Statale 196 direction Ragusa; from Palermo take the highway A19 Palermo – Catania until Caltanissetta, driving on along Statale 626 until Gela and then take Statale 115 until Ragusa or Modica; from Agrigento following the coastal route 115 for Caltanisetta direction Gela and stopping in Ragusa; from Syracuse taking the Statale 115 to Noto and Ragusa.
- Where to sleep: Poggio del Sole resort
Ready for the last day? I will wait for you the next Friday!