In true Italian style, Cefalu holidays are like a giant pizza. Dramatic scenery's the base, with a topping of historic sites and a sprinkling of sand. The whole lot's baked in the Mediterranean sun to finish off.

Age-old sites

Italy and history go together like spaghetti and meatballs, and Sicily’s no exception to the rule. Plump for Cefalu, and ancient sites like the centuries-old Temple of Diana are in good voice. These hilltop ruins watch over the old town, where Norman architecture reigns supreme. The main square hosts a UNESCO-ranked cathedral built by King Roger II in the 12th century, and the monarch’s almost-intact home – Osterio Magno – isn’t far away either. Elsewhere, balcony-emblazoned lanes tangle their way towards the waterfront, with trattorias, cafés and boutiques doing business along the way.

Scenic surroundings

La Rocca's the town’s most eye-catching landmark. This natural behemoth literally translates as ‘the rock’, and steep trails wind all the way to the panoramic summit. The pistachio-tinted Madonie Mountains add to the picture-book surroundings, despite lacking the reputation of lofty Mount Etna on the island’s east side.

Sand and sailing

Sunbathing’s not top of the list for most visitors to Cefalu, thanks to its sightseeing credentials, but the beach is certainly a looker. A long brushstroke of sand flicks out from the old quarter, with hotels, restaurants and a panoramic promenade taking the place of old-school buildings behind it. Skip around the headland if you’re a bit of a boat buff, as the main marina’s located here.

At a Glance

  • Flake out on a sandy beach
  • Visit the UNESCO-ranked cathedral
  • Trek to the top of ‘the rock’