Travelling in Sicily: part 4 – Valley of the Temples & Siracusa

June 13, 2017 Hansonthebike 1

Reading Time: 8 minutes After visiting the north coast of Sicily, we crossed the island towards the next destination: the famous Valley of the Temples on the south shore. The route follows valleys and passes west of the Madonie mountains on highways that are often elevated on a series of pillars. It seems to be a bit of overkill and it definitely doesn’t improve the landscape; the concrete and construction companies must have had a field day, week, year, decade. Interestingly, some of the roads are in pretty bad shape but not much is really being done to repair roads. The road owner closes a lane [Read more…]

Every Italian home has a coffee maker. And so did our AirBnB locations.

Travelling in Sicily: part 3 – Castelbuono, Madonie & Cefalú

May 28, 2017 Hansonthebike 3

Reading Time: 7 minutes After a good night sleep at our second AirBnB location, we spent some time checking out Castelbuono. This town doesn’t get the attention it deserves as it is a nice base for some hiking in the Madonie mountains as well as a location to soak up some of the interior of Sicily. Yet another place with a long history, it is one of the places that is lively enough to spend a few days. It has a lovely old square, a number of tiny groceries stores, restaurants, butchers and bakeries, but unlike for example Cefalú, it isn’t much focussed on [Read more…]

The tiny Fiat 500 is still all over the place in Sicily

Travelling in Sicily: part 2 – Museo Archeologico, Villa Romana del Casale & Morgantina

May 25, 2017 Hansonthebike 3

Reading Time: 5 minutes   Ragusa’s museum After five days in Sicily’s Ragusa, it was time to move on. But not before we checked out a tiny path running through a ravine near the old town. The path itself is not very well used but we found it on OpenStreetMaps. It also is not long and it passes some more caves and former graves. Youth was hanging out there and we had a little chat with some of the kids. While the path continues further we went up and emerged at the top near the Archeological museum. The museum is worth a visit, but very old fashioned [Read more…]

View on Old Ragusa, or Ragusa Ibla

Travelling in Sicily: part 1 – the south east World Heritage sites

May 23, 2017 Hansonthebike 4

Reading Time: 9 minutes Karen and I prefer to go on holidays outside the high season. Why not when nothing ties you to the school holidays? Our preferred month is April, when Ottawa tends to be pretty dreadful, with temperatures around the freezing point, rainy, windy, some wet snow and this year even flooding. But the choices are limited. Yes we could go to Chili or South Africa, but the less we can fly, the better. Plus, I’d like to see my family in the Netherlands once a year, so the options (I am not complaining) are limited to Southern Europe, particularly Southern Spain, [Read more…]

Cycling to the Quintessential Dutch Windmills

September 13, 2016 Hansonthebike 0

Reading Time: 6 minutes Not far from Haarlem and Amsterdam, the Zaanse Schans is a bike-able destination. We checked out 17th century saw mills, old farms, Dutch skies, a ferry and passed a waste facility that looked like a luxury hotel.