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Syracuse and Ortigia

Siracusa and Ortigia, intense Sicily tour to discover ancient civilizations today in Unesco heritage.

Tour Info

Duration About 8 hours
Departure Time Suggested at 9:00 am

Tour Description

The Syracuse tour and Ortigia Sicily begins at the hotel were you will be picked up and be met by the driver who will drive you through the whole tour. As we arrive to city of Syracuse Sicily we will stop first at the Siracusa Archaeological Park called Neapolis (from the Greek “new city”). Home to most of the Syracuse attractions of Greek and Roman classics periods. It was built between 1952 and 1955, with the aim of bringing together the major monuments of that “antique neighborhood”.The Greek theatre Siracusa or Greek theatre Syracuse (Teatro Greco), built by King Hieron II around the fifth century BC, the largest in Sicily and one of the most important in the entire Greek world. The Greek theatre Siracusa has been modified because now days there are many requirements to follow.The history of the Roman Amphitheatre of Syracuse was quite discussed, it was built around the third century. Along the avenue that leads to the Roman Amphitheatre of Syracusa there are the tomb stones, originally found in the necropolis of Syracuse. There dimension are in oval form 140 x 90. The Altar of Hieron II is a big monument of the third century AC. The altar of Hieron II visited in the Syracuse tour and Ortigia Sicily remains only the base that was carved into the rock while the upper part was built of stone blocks, it was demolished in the sixteenth century by the Spanish. This altar is the largest known of the Greek world, it is supposed that perhaps it was dedicated to Jupiter the Liberator, which was celebrated in honor of the feast of Eleutheria, which 450 bulls were sacrifice at a time. Among the other attractions of the ancient Syracuse is the Ear of Dionysius (Orecchio di Dionisio), it is an artificial cave in a funnel shape like an ear. It is carved in limestone and its unique. The cave is exceptional with its acoustic properties, the sounds are amplified up to 16 times.  These acoustic features and shape were led artist Caravaggio (in Syracuse there is a painting by the artist) to name it Ear of Dionysius, giving the strength to the legend of the sixteenth century according to the famous tyrant Dionysius that built this cave as a prison and close in the prisoners so they could listen from the opening above the words blown up by echo.

After visiting the Siracusa Archeological Park we procede to Ortygia Island, where it is possible to have lunch, there are typical local restaurants. Ortygia is very near to Syracuse. There we can visit the Shrine of our Lady of Tears (Santuario della Madonna delle Lacrime), the Spring of Arethusa (Fonte of Arethusa) when Artemis changed Arethusa into a spring of water to escape the river god Alpheus, it was here that the transformed maiden emerged, the Temple of Apollo (Tempio di Apollo) it is probably the oldest Greek Temples in Sicilydating around 565 BC, Piazza Duomo in the 5th century BC Greek Temple, became the Cathedral.  Various churches in Sicily where built on the sites of ancient temples.and only a few are surviving examples. At the end of the Syracuse tour and Ortigia Sicily we are ready to return back to the hotel, a relaxing  journey back admiring the views.