NOTO the capital of Sicilian Baroque


Siracusa - NotoNoto (Sicilian: Notu; Latin: Netum) is a city  in the Province of Syracuse, Sicily, Italy. Its located 32 km southwest of the city of Syracuse at the foot of the Iblean Mountains and gives its name to the surrounding area, Val di Noto.

Noto is considered the Capital of Sicilian Baroque and  In 2002  was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


The older town, Noto Antica, lies 4 miles directly north on Mount Alveria. It was ancient Netum, a city of Sicel origin, left to Hiero II by the Romans by the treaty of 263 BC and mentioned by Cicero as a foederala citilas (Verr. v. 51, 133). According to legend, Daedalus stopped here after his flight over the Ionian Sea, as well as Hercules, after his seventh task. In the Roman era, it opposed praetor Verres.

Noto by Vnavakys copyNOTO_1 Sicilianajpg copy


In 866 it was conquered by the Arabs, who elevated to a capital city of one of three districts of the island (the Val di Noto). Later it was a rich Norman city.

In the 16th and 17th centuries, the city brought forth several notable intellectual figures, including Giovanni Aurispa, jurists Andrea Barbazio and Antonio Corsetto, as well as the architect Matteo Carnelivari and the minor composer Mario CapuanaIn 1503 king of Sicily Ferdinand III gave it the title of civitas ingeniosa (“ingenious city”). In the following centuries, the city expanded enlarging its medieval limits; and new buildings, churches and convents were built. These, however, were all totally destroyed by the 1693 earthquake. The devastation of the city on Mount Alveria was accompanied by its economy which relied mainly on agricultural products– vine, oil, cereals, rice, cotton and its renowned handicrafts.

Noto a house facade copyNoto streets by Vanvakys copy


L’Infiorata di Noto the Springtime Flower’s Fest . Although “The Infiorata”(flower feast of Springtime)  started in Noto 26 years ago, has already became one of the most beautiful of Italy. Celebrated at the end of May involves a particular painting technique with flowers and explosion of colors of the marvelous Sicilian Spring. The Artists, coming from all part of Sicily and abroad, start Friday night to work on their masterpiece, creating various and beautiful mosaics using petals. Directed by “i mastri infioratori”,  lay all their artworks over the  hill of  Via Corrado Nicolaci. Immerse on its unique fabulous Baroque atmosphere  becomes a temporary open air museum to enjoy all week end!




“Dulcis in fundo” Gastronomy of Noto. The so-called “cavateddi” are a typical product of the gastronomy of the city of Noto, dumplings made ​​from durum wheat semolina dried in the sun. When cooked, they are served with a sauce made of pork, which is colloquially called “u sucu fintu” (the fake sauce). In addition to this rich dish, during the winter holiday season; don’t miss bread and homemade pizzas, such as “scacce”. These traditional folk dishes, which bring the city of Noto closer to the neighboring province of Ragusa, are then stuffed with various ingredients. On the menus of the Baroque town, don’t miss ” the cucca”, a round cake made ​​of cheese and sausage. Very similar to those of Palermo, are the “sfinciuni”, a very thick pizza topped with tomato, oregano and anchovies. The province of Syracuse is also known for its almonds and honey from the nearby Sortino, which are the base for the sweets, along with “pasticciotti” biscuits stuffed with quince jelly and figs, the“facciuni” glazed and “cubbaita” homemade nougat.

scacciata siciliana copyFesta dei Cavateddi Ragusa by Vanvakys copySweet traditions copy




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