10 things to do in Trapani Tips and ideas for your holiday in TrapaniExperiences and things to do
We recommend 10 things to do and/or not to miss in Trapani, a city that must be lived in a slow, intimate and personal way. The 10 things we recommend in Trapani must be interpreted and calibrated according to your tastes, time available and period of year.
Trapani is a difficult city to describe. You have the risk of forgetting something. When you are asked to recommend the main things to do and visit, Trapani is like a "history book", full of information, artifacts, photographs, which traces different and distant periods and historical moments with a lot of insights of a cultural and food and wine nature.
We have tried to select the essential, the most recommended 10 things to do and visit that you can rarely do in a single holiday in Trapani. That's why, in 9 out of 10 cases, people return to Trapani. Cases of "addiction" are not rare. Tourists, who have chosen it as the main destination of their holidays, return every year and even several times a year.
Here are our tips for your holiday in Trapani:
- Trapani street food tour, from salty to sweet
- Getting lost in the alleys looking for monuments and artworks
- Admiring the sunset over the sea and the Egadi islands
- Visiting fish market and tasting the couscous alla trapanese
- Eating in Trapani: pasta with "pesto Trapanese” and pizza "rianata"
- Having a swim in the "famous" beaches
- Cannolo tour in Trapani and Erice
- Visiting the Egadi Islands
- Visiting Erice
- Visiting the Riserva delle Saline with the windmills
Trapani street food tour, from salty to sweet
A holiday can be considered complete only if it includes tastings of typical dishes and experiences dedicated to discovering local cuisine. Trapani can be considered a sort of amusement park, house of Sicilian-Mediterranean cuisine, a result of contamination and experimentation that took place over the centuries.
This is why, there is certainly the "street food" tour among the first things to do in Trapani, a route between different places in the old town (small bars, delis, historic patisseries and ice cream shops). You will taste a sandwich with “panelle”, “arancini” of rice, “iris” with meat, “cabbucio” pizza or slice of sfincione from Palermo and continuing with the many desserts, from ice cream to “granita”, from cannoli to “cassatella” with ricotta.
Getting lost in the alleys in search of monuments and works of art
After tasting our delicacies, a nice walk can be useful. The Old town of Trapani, whose current conformation is the result of centuries of history, offers curious and attentive visitors an incredible heritage. Getting lost in the alleys of the historic center, passing from the main streets (such as via Garibaldi, Corso Vittorio Emanuele and via Torrearsa) to the internal alleys, especially in the oldest districts (such as Giudecca), allows you to discover and visit monuments and artworks of great value, through very different and distant styles and eras, from Gothic to Baroque and Art Nouveau.
You can visit the main churches, such as the cathedral and the Collegio church, palaces with baroque and rococo facades, the traces of distant eras - such as the Roman columns - and decorations of Art Nouveau buildings. You can have a walk along the ancient north walls, built by the Spaniards, to get to Torre Ligny, with a view of the Colombaia Castle, which takes us back over 2000 years, when Romans and Carthaginians competed for the dominion of the seas off the coast of Trapani.
Admiring the sunset over the sea and the Egadi Islands
Trapani is located in a special geographical position, in the heart of the Mediterranean, overlooking the sea and the Egadi islands. This combination of factors makes it an ideal destination for sunsets lovers. Practically at all times of the year it is possible to watch the sunset over the sea, also choosing different panoramic points.
Our sunset is always fascinating and never the same as that of the day before, with the sky taking on all the color variations of red and the sea that shines and transforms the colors. Particularly suggestive is the sunset on the salt pans, where the light reflects on the tanks, making the horizon line disappear.
Visiting the fish market and tasting the couscous alla trapanese
Trapani is a seaside city, where fishing has always played a main role, both from an economic and a cultural point of view. Visiting the fish market is therefore a must for those who really want to get in touch with the soul of the city, perhaps taking the opportunity to shop.
Our advice is to combine a visit to the local market with the tasting of couscous alla trapanese. It is the main dish of our local tradition, a result of the mix between the dish of Arab origin and the historically most important food element in our area: fish. In Trapani, restaurateurs compete to see who makes it best. It is worth it to taste it.
Eating in Trapani: pasta with "pesto Trapanese” and pizza "rianata"
In addition to couscous, there are two other dishes that must absolutely be tried if you are in Trapani. Two other masterpieces from our popular cuisine are the result of the mix of local products - zero km - and a tradition handed down for generations: pasta with “pesto Trapanese” (made with almond, tomato, garlic and basil) and the pizza "rianata" (the name comes from oregano, in sicilian dialect "riano"). It is the typical traditional local pizza.
For the first dish we suggest tasting the "integralist" version, with our typical handmade pasta, called "busiata". As for pizza, there are no alternatives: we recommend the traditional pizza with fresh tomatoes cooked in one of the wood-fired ovens in the old town. In both cases you will taste one of the basic ingredients of our cuisine: red garlic from Nubia. A highly prized food with surprising nutritional qualities, it has been a “slow food” presidency for years .
Having a swim in the "famous" beaches
From May to October, but possibly until Christmas, Trapani also becomes a seaside destination. In this period it is strongly recommended to have a swim in one of the historic beaches of the city, which are located on the western side, from Piazza Vittorio to Torre Ligny.
We particularly recommend San Liberale cove, which is very suggestive and panoramic, and the beach of Porta Ossuna, between the former fish market and the so-called Bastione dell’Impossibile.
Cannolo tour in Trapani and Erice
The last “tasting” tip concerns our typical desserts. The list of must-try specialties would be very long, from “Genovese” to “martorana fruit”, from “cassatelle” to “sfince'', from “Sicilian cassata” to “graffe” with ricotta, as well as ice cream and the typical granitas.
Certainly, you cannot leave Trapani without tasting the typical Sicilian cannoli, which is a very serious matter here. In fact, there are different traditions and methods of preparation, often in competition with each other. This is why we suggest taking the “tour”, comparing the best cannoli produced in the towns and villages of the hinterland. In particular, we suggest the so-called “cannolo triangle”, between Napola, Dattilo and Chiesanuova, which holds the record for the longest and biggest cannoli in the world, 5 meters and 10 centimeters.
Visit Egadi Islands
Favignana, Levanzo and Marettimo are famous for the sea, unspoiled nature and fresh fish. They will surprise you with their crystal clear waters and paradisiacal beaches.
They belong to the protected marine area where you can enjoy breathtaking underwater views.
Visit Favignana with Cala Azzurra, Cala Rossa and many other suggestive places. Levanzo is very small and intimate, silent and with a unique nature, from Cala Minnola to Cala Tramontana, from Cala Fredda to Cala Faraglione.
Finally, Marettimo has the highest concentration of the largest protected marine reserve in Europe. Its mountain recalls those of the Dolomites and its flora enriches the land with unique smells and colors.
It is possible to reach the three islands by ferry or hydrofoil or renting a boat. If you want to experience a journey in complete relaxation and without any worries, the ideal option is the boat tour: we can help you to book a personalized service, with skipper and also exclusively.
Come and visit Egadi Islands.
Erice is very small but incredibly authentic. It is a village with a unique atmosphere, where time stopped in the Middle Ages, with ancient roots that have their origins in the legends. There are plenty of cobbled alleys, squares, churches and ancient villages, which tell the battles and love stories that welcomed Erice during the years.
You will enjoy the beautiful view of a sunset over Trapani while tasting an excellent “Genovese”, the typical sweet of Erice made with shortcrust pastry and cream. Visit the Balio gardens, Torretta Pepoli or Porta Trapani, get ready to lose yourself in the history of this timeless village.
Visit the Riserva delle Saline with the windmills
It is a protected natural area, established in 1995. It extends for almost a thousand hectares in the territory of Trapani and Paceco.
La Salina is a very suggestive place with its wide spaces, the scent of salt and the long canals, which change color at any time of day. In the summer, salt is collected and it is a very ancient art: first, the salt workers break the thick crust of the salt in the tanks and then they create small white mounds that shine with the sunlight. Finally, it is cleaned and packaged.
It is a unique spectacle. In addition to the salt processing, you can also enjoy the magnificent windmills and several flocks of migratory birds that stop in this reserve. It is the perfect kingdom of pink flamingos, gray herons , egrets and many other species.
Experience the magic of the pink sunset of the salt pans in Trapani.