After 4 days in Palermo, we were ready for something else. Since we were ultimately to fly out of Trapani, we decided to go there next. It was a good call to stay in Trapani for not only is it lovely itself, it’s an excellent base from which to explore the whole northwest of Sicily.
Upon recommendations, Elli and I set out on a day trip to visit the seaside town of San Vito lo Capo, cradled in a valley between impressive mountains with caves, and famous for its gem of a beach. We relished in the warm breeze, the outdoor eateries, the tremendous sandal selection and the occasional men in bikini brief swimsuits strutting down the streets. Although the Tyrrhenian Sea was awash with tourists, I wasn’t deterred from jumping in and bobbing with the waves the first chance I got.
In the afternoon, we took a 4-hour boat excursion to see the wild coastline of Riserva dello Zingaro, Italy’s first nature reserve. The park is best seen on foot, however the trails are long and we weren’t terribly keen on ’inspecting’ the flora nor unexpectedly coming face to face with the daunting local resident: the rare Bonelli eagle. As far as I was concerned, appreciating its tranquil hillsides was just as good from the comfort of the boat. Besides us two, our excursion companions were a large group of loud, friendly, generous Italians who took an instant liking to us. We stopped to swim in incredibly blue waters of the idyllic coves and bays of Scopello and Castellamare del Golfo. The coves are protected by rock towers jutting out of the sea. Half of the boat emptied itself into the water while the others remained onboard, watching and waving.
Personally, I never miss an opportunity to swim because I’ve been a water-baby since day 1, or so my parents claim. Valeria, the friendliest of the tour group (and who stayed onboard), had offered to take pictures with my camera of us swimming. Not only that, to ensure that we got the most out of the experience, she tossed pieces of bread towards me and Elli, and hundreds of tiny silvery fish instantly swarmed around us, wiggling past to get to the crumbs. If the fish had been any bigger, I may very well have jumped out of my skin!