Sicily among the world’s best islands
According to Travel + Leisure magazine readers, Sicily is among the world’s best islands in 2010.
Readers were asked to rank their top picks according to several criteria: the islands’ natural attractions, activities and sights, and restaurants and cuisine; also, the friendliness of the resident islanders and the overall value of taking a vacation there.
The results are literally and figuratively all over the map. This year’s top-rated islands include some that can be accessed with a single domestic air transfer and others that require crossing a half-dozen time zones using several forms of transport. Some on the list are oases of quiet and unspoiled nature; others draw hordes of party-minded fashionistas. And some are as tiny as confetti scraps, while others would take months to properly explore.
Still, when compared to 2009’s “Best Islands” survey results, this year’s list does reveal a few particular trends. For starters, Travel + Leisure readers seemed slightly less enamored with extremely far-flung islands in 2010 (two distant tropical Asian destinations slipped in the rankings). They also seemed far more interested in Mediterranean and Adriatic isles (4 of the top 10 slots were taken by newcomers in Greece, Italy, and Croatia).
This is what Travel + Leisure writes about Sicily in its October issue:
New to the list. Boldly flavorful cuisine, robust wines, crumblingly beautiful Baroque cities, and vibrant seaside villages have all helped Sicily nab a spot on our list of top-rated islands. But while you may already be familiar with its famous dishes and varietals (spicy eggplant caponata, earthy Nero d’Avola)—not to mention its infamous status as the birthplace of the Mafia—Sicily has plenty of surprises. For example, the twin south-coast cities of Agrigento and Taormina, which together are home to some of the most extensive and well-preserved ancient Greek ruins outside of Greece.