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Syracuse (Italy)

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Syracuse [43] (Siracusa) is a medium sized city in Sicily, Italy with an interesting mixture of ancient and modern.


Syracuse is a city on the eastern coast of Sicily and the capital of the province of Syracuse, Italy. It was once described by Cicero as "the greatest Greek city and the most beautiful of them all."

Syracuse is an ancient town on the sea, which was of great importance as Greek Syracuse. It has a well known archaeological zone and a historic centre on the island of Ortygia (Ortigia).

Patron saint of Syracuse, Santa Lucia or Saint Lucy is beloved by the Syracusans.

Syracuse is a pleasant town, with plenty to occupy tourists for at least a couple of days. It's also a good area for seeing the south-eastern corner of Sicily, including the Baroque towns of Ragusa and Noto, several archaeological sites, and the lively city of Catania.

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

By train[edit]

  • Train connection, (The train station is in the town-centre.), [2]. The railway station is 10 minutes walk from the centre of the old town. Two daily intercity trains from mainland Italy (Rome and Naples) continue on from Messina via Catania to Syracuse. There are also different daily sleeper trains from mainland Italy (Rome, Milano, Venezia, Turino, Genova and Bologna) to Syracuse (Siracusa).Less frequent local trains continue on to Noto, Modica, Ragusa and Gela. These trains from the mainland connect via ferry. Siracusa is also served by direct trains from Rome (a ten-and-a-half-hour journey). There are frequent trains from Catania (a couple of hours away). From Palermo train travel is a bit harder; you will need to change at least once (usually at Messina), and the journey will take 6-7 hours. The railway station is on Via Crispi, a twenty-minute walk from Ortygia. Note that in addition to the five main platforms (numbered 1-5), the station has three smaller platforms also (numbered 1-3) that are marked 'Ovest' - if you are heading westwards in the direction of Gela it is these you will need.  edit

By bus[edit]

  • Bus connection, [3]. Regular buses run to and from Catania, Noto, Modica, Ragusa, Sortino and Gela as well as more local destinations. The public bus terminal is one block from the Siracusa train station, on Corso Umberto 1. AST tickets can be bought at a kiosk at the train station. Syracuse is served by white urban buses run by AST, whose bus station is just across the bridge into Ortygia at Riva della Posta.  edit
Piazza del Duomo, Syracuse

By car[edit]

  • Avis Autonoleggio - Siracusa, Via dei Mille, 9, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 122 420, [4]. Car rental agency  edit

Get around[edit]

There is an electric bus that goes about twice an hour. It seems to be an amalgamation of the previous 3 experimental routes (blue, red and green) the stops are similar, but the routes truncated, it no longer goes to the station or bus station.

The centre of town is easily visitable on foot - the island of Ortygia contains most of the sights and is compact and pleasant for strolling. The archaeological area is about 25 minutes' walk away from the island.

AST bus station is at Riva della Posta, a parking area at the begining of Ortygia. Bus no 26 run from downtown past Sanctuary Lacrime and Neopolis.

See[edit][add listing]

The Greek Theatre, Syracuse
Roman amphitheatre near the Greek theatre.
Paradise Quarries in the Parco Archeologico
Sanctuary della Madonna delle Lacrime
Siracuse Aretusa Fountain
  • Apollo temple (Tempio di Apollo), Largo XXV Luglio, 96100 Siracusa [44]. Temple is located in the northern part of the island of Ortygia. It is is the earliest example of monumental stone architecture in Sicily.
  • Arethusa Spring (Fonte Arethusa), Largo Aretusa, 96100 Siracusa. Spring of Arethusa is a pond surrounded by papyrus reeds and formed by a freshwater spring near the sea. Ancient myth says that the nymph, Arethusa, fled from Greek river-god Alpheios and fell into the sea. She resurfaced in Ortygia in the old town of Syracuse.
  • Catacomba E Sepolcro Di Santa Lucia, Piazza Santa Lucia, 96100 Siracusa, tel.+39 093 164 694. It was situated in the earlier stone quarry arranged into the basement widely exploited in the Greek-Roman era.
  • Catacombs of San Giovanni (Catacombe di San Giovanni), Largo San Marciano, 96100 Siracusa, tel. +39 093 164 694 An underground necropolis dating back to the fourth century.
  • Cathedral of Syracuse (Chiesa Cattedrale Natività di Maria Santissima), Piazza Duomo, 5, 96100 Siracusa, tel.+39 093 165 328. It was built in the 7th century over the Temple of Athena (5th century BC). This was a Doric temple with columns, that still can be seen incorporated in the walls of the current church.
  • Church of Saint Lucia 'al Sepolcro, Via Luigi Bignami, 1, 96100 Siracusa, tel.+39 093 167 946, [45]. Byzantine church built, according to tradition, in the same place of the martyrdom of the saint in 303 AD. It has lots of restorations. The current appearance is from the 15th-16th centuries. The most ancient parts still preserved include the portal, the three half-circular apses and the first two orders of the belfry. Behind the altar you can see the „Burial of Saint Lucy“, the masterpiece painted by Caravaggio in 1608.
  • Church of San Tommaso al Pantheon (Chiesa di San Tommaso al Pantheon), Viale Armando Diaz, 1, 96100 Siracusa, tel.+39 093 160 100. It is considered as the main "Memorial of the First World War" wth the ossuary containing there.
  • Galleria Regionale Via Capodieci, 14, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 161 340, [46]. The Palazzo Bellomo houses the art museum featuring post-ancient works of sculpture, painting, and decorative arts.
  • Greek Theater (Teatro Greco), Via Luigi Bernabò Brea, 96100 Siracusa. Built in c. 470 B.C. but since then has gone through reconstruction. Greek drama is now reenacted there, but in the Italian language.
  • Ipogoe in Duomo Square.
  • Latomia dei Cappuccini, Largo della Latomia, Piazza Cappuccini, 96100 Siracusa. It is an ancient quarry of limestone formed rocks with a variety of plants creating a picturesque image.
  • Latomia del Paradiso (Latomie del Paradiso), 96100 Siracusa, tel. +39 093 166 206. The Latomia are ancient stone quarries that were worked on beginning from the sixth century B.C. onwards. Latomia del Paradiso is the best known of quarries. It has two underground galleries. The first is known as "The Ear of Dionysios" because of its acoustics. The legend says that the tyrant, Dionysios, could stand at one end and listen to whispered conversations of those imprisoned therein. The second gallery is called the Cave of Ropes (Grotto dei Cordari), where rope makers practiced their trade.
  • Maniace Castle, Castello Maniace, Via Castello Maniace, 51, 96100 Siracusa, tel.+39 093 145 08211. It is is a citadel and castle in Ortigia, at the far point of island promontory.
  • Museo del Papiro (Papyrus Museum "Corrado Basile"), Via Nizza, 14, 96100 Siracusa, tel.+39 093 122 100, [47]. Small museum displays an ancient tradition in the city of paper producing from papyrus.
  • Neapolis Archaeological Park, Via del Teatro Greco, 96100 Siracusa, tel.+39 093 145 08258. The ancient city, including the Greek Theatre, Quarries, Caves and Roman Amphitheatre. Neapolis Virtual tour.
  • Old town of Ortygia island. It is the oldest part of Syracuse and quite a charming town. In Ortygia, the Aretus a Fountain is where many poets and writers went to be inspired. The legend says, that Alpheus, Son of Oceanus, fell madly in love with the a nymph named Aretusa. The nymph didn't share their feelings. To save her, Artemides turned her into a water source. Zeus also turned Alpheus into a river, allowing him to meet up with Aretusa.
  • Paolo Orsi Regional Archaeological Museum (Museo Archeologico Regionale Paolo Orsi), Viale Teocrito, 66, 96100 Siracusa, tel.+39 093 148 9511, [48]. Villa Landolina houses Museo Archeologico Regionale Paolo Orsi, which is the second most important archeology museum in Sicily.
  • Piazza del Duomo, Piazza Duomo
  • Protected Marine Area Plemmirio[49]. The area includes the sea around the Penisola della Maddalena, the southern continuation of the bay from Porto Grande in the town, following the coast for about 10 kilometres with its inlets, gorges, rocks and bays.
  • Sanctuary Madonna della Lacrime (Basilica Santuario Madonna delle Lacrime), tel. +39 093 121 446, [50]. A huge concrete cone church built over a mass-produced Madonna statue that cried in 1954.

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Arancini Cooking, +39 348 113 6891 (), [5]. Arancini are a tradional Sicilian street food. There is much regional variation when it comes to the filling and shape of arancini.  edit
  • Cycling, Via della Dogana, 15, 96100 Siracusa, +39 331 633 0452, [6]. Bicycle rental service in Syracuse.  edit
  • Cooking Class, +39 392 827-71-51 (), [7].  edit
  • Diving (Ortigia Diving), Via della Maestranza, 57, 96100 Siracusa, +39 333 132 4030, [8]. Diving is accompanied by a team of professionals.  edit
  • Food and Wine Walking Tour, Largo Aretusa, 96100 Siracusa, Fonte Aretusa, [9].  edit
  • Foro Italica. This is a beautiful promenade, where many come to walk and relax. It is said that the trees make people want to spend the day under them.  edit
  • Hiking, Lungomare di Levante Ortigia, Via dei Tolomei, 3, 96100 Siracusa.  edit
  • Sailing, +39 334 3600 997 (), [10]. Rent a Boat in Siracusa.  edit
  • Sicilian puppet making (Teatro Alfeo), Via della Giudecca 22, Ortigia, +39 093 146 5540, [11].  edit
  • Sicilian workshops (MADE Program Accademia di Belle Arti Rosario Gagliardi), Via Cairoli, 20, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 121 908, [12].  edit
Church portal of Saint Lucia in Syracuse


  • Festival of Santa Lucia. on December 13. A solid silver statue of the patron saint is carried to Basilica del Sepolcro where it remains for eight days.  edit
  • Theatrical Season at the Greek Theater. Goes from May to July. Throughout these months, there are staged dramas by famous authors such as Aeschylus and Euripides.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

The outdoor market in Ortigia is one of the most amazing places. Here you can find the freshest and finest fish, vegetables and fruits available. The experience and color are memorable. Other than food, you can find almost anything you will need for you holiday experience in Syracuse from clothing to extra baggage.

One of the most popular craft products in Syracuse is papyrus paper. Local pottery is also a common product to buy. If you are looking for the perfect gift, buy a bottle of Nero d'Avola or a jar of their famous fish preserves.

Eat[edit][add listing]

Arancini is the street food of choice for ease of preparation, their storage and ease of transportation. They are found in all the bars and takeaways in Sicily at all hours of the day.

  • Don Camillo, Via della Maestranza, 96, Ortigia, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 167 133, [13]. Restaurant specializes in creative spins on traditional Sicilian dishes. Prices are not too expensive even though they have top notch food.  edit
  • Il Cenacolo, Via Consiglio Reginale, 29, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 118 51595, [14]. This busy trattoria-pizzeria has an outdoor terrace and a cosy interior, and offers a wide range of pizzas and other dishes, including excellent risotto, sea food and couscous.  edit
  • L'ancora, Via Guglielmo Perno, 7, 96100 Siracusa, +39 0931 462 369, [15]. An out of the way find on Via Guglielmo Perno. It is very seafood-heavy.  edit
  • Piano B, Via Cairoli, 18, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 166 851, [16]. Pizza restaurant  edit
  • Red Moon, Riva Porto Lachio, 36, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 160 356. Seafood restaurant  edit
  • UMI, Via Reno, 11, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 118 55857, [17]. Sushi restaurant  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

There are also many night clubs along the coastline on the Alfeo Promenade. Some have dance floors on the beach so that you can dance under the moonlight.

  • CaféIna, Viale Armando Diaz, 33, 96100 Siracusa, +39 338 314 8388. Espresso bar  edit
  • Maud, Corso Umberto I, Syracuse, +39 093 119 62325. Pub  edit
  • Sapori DiVini - Ortigia, Ronco II ai, bottai, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 118 15755. Wine bar  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Most cheap hotels are located east of the train station. There is a number of Bed and Breakfasts around the post office and east of the Apollo temple.


  • Archimede Ortigia, Via Francesco Crispi, 67, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 146 2040. Small hotel directly cared for by the owners. Located at the heart of the city is near the railway station. The historic centre (the island of Ortigia).  edit
  • Asparano, Str. Ognina, 45, 96100 Ognina, +39 339 490 2782, [18]. B&B is in a privileged position just 200 metres from the sea.  edit
  • Gelone, Via Eumelo, 80, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 124 182, [19]. B&B is in the heart of the city of Syracuse.  edit
  • LoL Hostel Siracusa, Via Francesco Crispi, 92, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 146 5088, [20]. The only hostel in Siracusa, 50 m from the train and bus station, 8 minutes walking from Ortigia and the Archaeological Park. Cheap 4, 8/10 and 20 beds dorms and private rooms all with bathroom and air conditioned. Open 24 hours, Wi-Fi free, no curfew, no lockout, free lockers in rooms, multilingual friendly staff. Clean rooms and toilets, breakfast with fresh coffee and croissants. Nice big terrace for meeting other travelers and chilling.  edit
  • Posta, Via Trieste, 33, 96100 Siracusa (Next to the main post office and bus terminal on Ortigia island), +39 093 121 819, [21]. Standard hotel rooms with bathroom, AC, TV, minibar, balcony and very good breakfast.  edit
  • Sleep in Sicily, Via delle Vergini, 20, 96100 Siracusa, +39 339 799 5936, [22]. Near the Aretusa Fountain and Duomo square on Ortigia island. B&B with bath ensuite, tv, digital terrestrial, frigobar, air condition.  edit
  • Sorella Luna Hotel, Via Francesco Crispi, 23, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 121 178 (fax: +39 093 144 9671), [23]. Simple low budget accommodation with a pleasant atmosphere, family run and central to everything.  edit
  • Villa Mediterraneo, Via Mar Mediterraneo, 1, 96100 Siracusa, +39 349 621 8974, [24]. It's situated in Fontane Bianche, near Syracuse and Noto. The apartments are near to the sea.  edit


Syracuse street
  • Alla Giudecca, Via Giovanni Battista Alagona, 52, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 122 255 (fax: +39 093 162 433), [25]. Residence of 14 dwellings set in a magnificent medieval building in the heart of Ortigia. Beneath the property is an ancient Hebrew bath used for purification rituals in the Byzantine era.  edit
  • Caol Ishka Hotel, Via Elorina, 154, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 169 057 (). Boutique hotel with large gardens, swimming pool and fine restaurant. Located on the bank of river Anapo beside Fiume Ciane, a natural reserve, five minutes from the old town of Siracusa/Ortigia.  edit
  • Grand Hotel Villa Politi, Via M, Via Maria Politi Laudien, 2, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 141 2121 (fax: +39 093 136 061), [26]. Elegant four star hotel with 100 rooms overlooking the city centre and the Mediterranean.  edit
  • Hotel del Santuario, Via del Santuario, 1, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 146 5656 (fax: +39 093 146 5565), [27]. Hotel is located near the archaeological zone.  edit
  • La Borgata, Viale Luigi Cadorna, 77, 96100 Siracusa, +39 334 649 7326. Small cosy B&B hotel, 10 minutes walk to historical center. Air conditioning, free WiFi, friendly staff. Clean rooms and toilets, breakfast with fresh coffee and croissants.  edit
  • La Frescura agriturismo, Via per Floridia, 50, 96100 Siracusa (SS 124), +39 338 940 1937, [28]. checkin: 15:30; checkout: 10:30. The context is the marvelous La Frescura agriturismo hotel, an ancient typical Sicilian masseria surrounded by 12 hectares of lemons, oranges and mandarins trees. The position represent the ideal compromise between countryside and city, Siracusa is just 6 km far away. And, moreover, the location permit to reach the most interesting site all around the East coast of Sicily! (37.07112,15.205650) edit
  • La Rosa Sul Mare Siracusa, Via dei Diamanti, 16, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 171 4813 (, fax: +39 093 171 4970), [29]. Hotel in front of the sea. An elegant building of the 19th century with a wide selection of bedrooms, a swimming pool and nearby tennis courts.  edit
  • L'Approdo delle Sirene Siracusa, Riva Giuseppe Garibaldi, 15, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 124 857 (fax: +39 093 148 3765), [30]. Historical and aristocratic building. B&B with large bedrooms (some with balcony) furnished in the Mediterranean style with complimentary breakfast. In the summer months this service is available on the terrace with view ever the sea.  edit
  • Mediterraneo, Via Tripoli, 40, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 144 5047, [31]. Hotel is in the centre of the city.  edit
  • Palazzo Cavalieri, Via Malta, 42, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 148 3635 (), [32]. Boutique Townhouse Hotel in the historical centre, just bordering Ortygia. Amenities: Wi-fi, king-size bed, air condition, concierge, laundry service, airport shuttle service.  edit
  • Palazzo Giaracà, Via dei Mille, 34, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 119 62691, [33]. A unique hotel of Ortigia, close to the historic centre of Syracuse. The hotel, famous for its large and comfortable common areas, also offers a wide selection of bedrooms divided in twin, double, triple and family, plus a few self catering apartments for longer stays.  edit
  • Resort Sant'Agostino (Residence Siracusa), Traversa Case Bianche, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 171 7229 (), [34]. It is located in the countryside, the Residence Sant'Agostino offers guests spa, hot tub, turkish / steam bath, solarium, wi-fi and delicious apartments with kitchen and dining room, bedroom and bathroom. (37.063349,15.224977) edit
  • Royal Maniace Hotel, Lungomare d'Ortigia, 13, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 167 437 (fax: +39 093 148 0489), [35]. Hotel presents 21 bedroom divided in twin, double and triple, some with sea view. All the accommodations come with private bath, shower, air conditioning, satellite TV and mini bar. Among the public areas and services: the restaurant, private parking and the meeting hall with internet connection and LCD screen TV.  edit
  • Villa dei Papiri, Traversa Testa Pisima, 2/C, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 172 1321, [36]. The farm is 6 km from Syracuse, closely woven with the history of Syracuse, its most ancient legends.  edit


  • Coastal Villa Enza, Str. Capo Murro di Porco, 192 B, 96100 Plemmirio, +39 338 175 7830, [37]. Coastal Villa Enza is just 40 meters from the sea, inside Protected Marine Area Plemmirio and 9 km South. The private villa may host up to 6 people in 3 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, kitchen, living room with fireplace, veranda with barbecue and offers free onsite parking.  edit
  • Des Etrangers et Miramare, Passeggio Adorno 10/12, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 131 9100 (fax: +39 093 131 9000), [38]. Luxury hotel overlooking he bay of Siracusa.  edit
  • Grand Hotel Minareto Deluxe, Via del Faro Massolivieri 26/a, +39 093 172 1222, [39]. Luxury hotel featuring a private access to the beach.  edit
  • Grand Hotel Ortigia, Viale Giuseppe Mazzini, 12, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 146 4600, [40]. Hotel right on the waterfront of Ortygia.  edit
  • Grande Albergo Alfeo, Via Nino Bixio, 5, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 121 676 (fax: +39 093 146 3915), [41]. Hotel with 39 single, twin, double and triple bedrooms with private bath, satellite LCD TV and Wi-Fi. Also available bar, restaurant, meeting room, private parking and breakfast buffet included.  edit
  • Not'Art Boutique Hotel, Piazza S. Giuseppe, 31, 96100 Siracusa, +39 093 161 135, [42]. The Hotel Not’Art Apart Siracusa offers a large choice of self-catering apartments and suites on the fantastic isle of Ortigia. Services available include private bath, internet Wi-Fi, TV LCD, telephone, air conditioning, fitted kitchen and Jacuzzi.  edit

Get out[edit]

AST bus station is at Riva della Posta, a parking area at the begining of Ortygia.

  • Bus no 21 is a circular line Ortygia - Fontane Bianche. The last stop in Siracusa is not far from Sanctuary Madonna della Lacrime, but does not stop at Neopolis.

The train station is at Piazzale Stazione Centrale.

Syracuse is on the train line that runs from Messina, Taormina and Catania along the coast. To the south the train pass by Noto, Pozzallo, Scicli, Ragusa, Vittoria and Gela among other places.

The train stations has two areas main and west (ovest) and both areas contain the platforms (binari) 1 to 3. Be careful and don't wait in the wrong platform.

Close to the train station there is also a interbus stop with direct buses to Catania.Create category

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