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Weekend Escape: Sicily

Wed 29th July 2015

Cefalu city, Sicily

For our Sicilian Limes scent we source limes direct from Sicily, which is one of the reasons that it holds such a special place in our heart. But it is more than that. It is an island of alluring charm, where every sight, sound and smell seem to have been designed to awaken and indulge your senses.

If it’s a beach-break you’re after, you need look no further than the sparkling seas and soft sandy shores of the majestic island that can boast to be the Mediterranean’s largest. But walk past the tourist hub of Marinella di Selinunte, populated with beach huts, restaurants and bars, until you reach a two-mile stretch of golden sand – The Foce del Belice; one of the last stretches of Sicilian coastline that has remained untouched by tourists. Relax on this little slice of natural beauty, choosing either the soothing sounds of the waves crashing on the beachfront itself, or in one of the secluded coves surrounding it, such as the sea-turtle colony of Capparrina di Mare, embellished by miniature palms.

Although most travellers visit the fishing town of Portopalo di Capo Passero – the most southern point of Sicily – for its beautiful beaches, the Tonnara di Scopello, a walled medieval fishing estate is well worth a visit for a picturesque snapshot of industrial archaeology – a real feast for the eyes. Spend some time wandering through the warehouses and museum before retiring for the night in one of the original fishermen’s lodgings to experience an utterly authentic and perfectly charming stay.

Not far from there is Marzamemi, a small village famed for producing some of the most tantalising tomatoes you’ll find anywhere in the Mediterranean. Head to the Campisi Company, which specialises in cherry tomatoes – adored for their dazzling colour, evocative scent and sweet taste. If you’re lucky you may spot a worker laying them out in the sun as they begin their natural drying process and get a taste along the way! Make sure you also enjoy a spot of lunch at their restaurant, which is popular with both travellers and locals alike.

Whether it’s wine that gets your juices flowing or something a little more filling, Sicily is the place to go to enjoy many mouth-watering delicacies. Visit the vineyards of Menfi, an enchanting Sicilian town also known for its ceramics and oils, to enjoy a spot of wine tasting. Or head back to Noto for an indulgent tea at the family-run Caffe Sicilia where you can delight your taste buds with pastries, gelato and granita.

It doesn’t, however, get more unique than what is on offer in Modica – the city of chocolate. Hidden down a small alley, inside what can only be described as an ancient pharmacy, is Antica Dolceria Bonajuto – the oldest chocolate shop in the region. Wooden bowls filled with cubes of artisan flavoured chocolates made using traditional techniques fill the small boutique with a heavenly scent and are yours for the tasting. But the real winner, it seems, is their cannelloni. Made to order with fillings such as pistachio and chocolate ricotta, these are a truly unique experience that will perfectly round off a hedonistic weekend spent on the beautiful island of Sicily.

Want to keep the memories alive? Shay & Blue has bottled the Italian experience in Sicilian Limes, a bold and sharply tangy fragrance, with a full-liquor hit of a salt margarita, a rush of salt limes, rosemary and masculine moss. Why should the holiday end just because the weekend is over?