I’ve always been a really keen walker myself, and my fondest memories are when my children were young and we used to take them on walking holidays to the Alps.
I don’t think it’s any one thing that makes a destination so special. It’s the rich combination of the natural beauty, the history, the architecture, the food, the people; all the different layers contribute to the real spirit and personality of a place. There is such an incredible wealth of varied scenery and culture within Europe I think there’s really almost no need to venture further afield!
My upcoming tour to Sicily is one of my favourites to lead. The history is absolutely fascinating; successive Greek, Carthaginian, Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Norman, Spanish, Neapolitan, British, Piemontese, Fascist, American and Mainland Italian occupations have all left their mark. I absolutely love the way that on a single walk, one can spot evidence of these periods scattered at random in the countryside.
This is what I like so much about Sicily: the close intertwining of the surviving relics of radically different historic cultures in an awesome natural landscape. For example, on the morning of the first day at Francavilla, we head up the hill to the ruined Norman castle, from where there is a fabulous view across the Arab citrus orchards and the Greek citadel of Castiglione to the stately, smoking, snow-capped bulk of Mount Etna. It is truly magical and always reminds me of why I do what I do.
If you want to join us on our next walking tour to Sicily click here.
Ramblers Worldwide Holidays also have some other great Italy walking holidays too.