What's on in Sicily this July


Here's a guide to all that's happening in Sicily this July, including some top tips from our local experts.

Festivals and events >>
What to eat >>
Our top tips >>

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See what's on in Sicily in other months >>

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Festivals and events

Ciclopica: Great Sculpture from Rodin to Giacometti
An 8-month exhibition of sculpture with pieces ranging from a 16th-century head of Buddha from China to examples of Henry Moore's curvaceous masterpieces.

Where? Ex Convento di San Francesco d'Assisi, Syracuse
When? 27th March - 30th October 2019

The Greek Theatre Festival
A month and a half of ancient Greek plays in the original Greek Theatre in Syracuse. The theme of the 2019 season, the 55th Cycle of Classical Plays, is women and war and the featured plays are The Trojan Women by Euripides, Helen by Euripides and Lysistrata by Aristophanes.

Where? Syracuse
When? 9th May - 6th July 2019

Taormina Festival

In the summer months, Taormina's Teatro Antico plays host to an almost nightly series of concerts. There's opera, rock, jazz and classical concerts and much more. We will add more specific information as and when it is confirmed.

Where? Teatro Antico, Taormina
When? July and August 2019

Sagra del Pesce Spada
Swordfish has long been one of Sicily's gastronomic highlights and can be found on pretty much every menu across the island. The fish that feeds a hundred mouths is celebrated with a huge barbecue at the little fishing port of Aci Trezza, coinciding with celebrations of the village's patron saint, San Giovanni. 

Where? Acitrezza, on Sicily's east coast just north of Catania
When? 12th - 14th July 2019 (also 7th - 9th June)

Orestiadi di Gibellina
A long-running annual festival of contemporary art, theatre, cinema, music and much more in the Baglio di Stefano and the Cretta di Burri.

Where? Gibellina
When? 6th July - 10th August 2019

Ortigia Film Festival
Syracuse's beating island heart, Ortigia, comes alive with the light, colour and sound of films. There are several al fresco screenings around the historic centre as well as more traditional indoor ones. There are old classics, a short film competition, homages to great actors and directors and much more.

Where? Syracuse
When? 13th - 20th July 2019

La Festa di Santa Rosalia
14th July means one thing only to Palermitani: the climax of the annual celebrations of their beloved patron saint, Santa Rosalia. Find out more here.

Where? Palermo
When? 14th July every year

Calatafimi-Segesta Festival
Around 60 events in a month and a half of theatre, classical and jazz concerts and much more besides, all in the magical surroundings of Segesta's Greek theatre. Most performances are in the evening, but some start at dawn! For the full programme, please click here

Where? the Greek Theatre of Segesta
When?  12th July - 1st September 2019

John Legend in concert
The legendary Oscar, Golden Globe and Grammy award-winning singer-songwriter for one night only.

Where? Teatro Antico, Taormina
When? 25th July 2019

La Scala Illuminata
The 142 steps of the Scalinata di Santa Maria del Monte in Caltagirone are illuminated hundreds of small oil lights to create a polychromatic effect of great beauty.

Where? Caltagirone
When? 24th-25th July every year

A celebration of street food both Sicilian, Italian and Tunisian, all washed down by good local wine and accompanied by music and other events.

Where? Trapani
When? 24th - 28th July 2019

Sagra dell'Olio
High in the Nebrodi Mountains, the townsfolk of Furnari invite all-comers to taste the fruit of their labours: bread oozing locally produced olive oil, bruschette, olives and wine. Music plays an important role as the locals and their guests let their hair down. 

Where? Furnari (in the Nebrodi Mountains above Tindari)
When? 31st July every year

Sciaranuova Festival
The fourth edition of Planeta's al fresco theatre festival in the beautiful natural theatre of their Etna winery.

Where? Planeta's Sciaranuova vineyard in Passopisciaro (Castiglione di Sicilia)
When? 2019 dates not yet confirmed

For more information and to book tickets email reservation@planeta.it or call +39 0925 1955465.

Scie in Balata
Two weekends celebrating design, crafts, gastronomy, art, music and more in the picturesque little fishing port of Marzamemi at Sicily's southeasternmost tip.

Where? Marzamemi
When? 2019 dates not yet confirmed

Wine Happy Hour
Planeta celebrates summer with a Rosé Summer Party at two of its vineyards.

Where? Ulmo (near Menfi) and Buonivini (near Noto)
When? 2019 dates not yet confirmed

For more information and to book tickets: email reservation@planeta.it or call +39 0925 1955465.

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What to eat in Sicily in July

July is a great month to come to Sicily if you like your food! Here are some ideas about what ingredients are in season (if you're cooking at your villa!) and what to order if you're eating out!

In-season local ingredients

chick peas
green beans
leaves of the "long" courgette - tenerumi
courgette flowers
zucchini lunghi (long, light green courgettes)
seafood and fish in abundance

What to order

Pasta con i tenerumi (a light very liquid soup often served cool with tomatoes, garlic, the leaves of the "long" courgette (tenerumi), onion and broken spaghetti)
Insalata all'Eoliana (light salad of anchovy fillets, capers, red onion, garlic, cherry tomatoes and toasted bread)
Caponata (a chutney of fried aubergine chunks, tomatoes, capers, olives, onions, celery, vinegar and olive oil
Pasta con pesto Trapanese (pasta with a raw paste of tomatoes, garlic, almonds and a little basil)
Involtini di pesce spada (swordfish roulades filled with breadcrumbs, raisins and pine kernels)
Pepata di cozze (mussels cooked in lots of pepper, olive oil and garlic)
Frutta di stagione!

See our definitive Sicilian recipe page >>

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Our top tips for July in Sicily


1. Go to the beaches "off-the-beaten-track": many of Sicily's best beaches can get crowded in late July so why not head to those which remain relatively free. You will have to walk a bit, and take provisions for the day (there are no lidos at the following beaches) but it is well worth the effort and you'll be on some of the most unspoilt stretches of sand anywhere in the Med! Try the pebbly coves and transparent waters of Lo Zingaro Nature Reserve, accessed from Scopello or San Vito Lo Capo in the north-west of Sicily, or the Vendicari Nature Reserve in the south-east, near Noto. Just east of Sciacca is the beach of Torre Salsa and a little further east the large pine forest-enclosed beach of Eracloa Minoa.

2. All aboard! Another way of beating the sometimes crowded beaches in July is to hire a boat for a day or two. It's a great way to discover parts of the coast that are difficult to get to on foot and you'll always find some translucent waters in which to dive... Take a look at our boat charters!

3. Take a nap in the afternoon... It can get quite hot in July in the early hours of the afternoon, so why not do as the locals have done for centuries? Head off to the beach or to see the sights early in the morning, have a light lunch and then take to your bed for a snooze. Then, at around 4pm, head back to the beach or your pool and start anticipating the balmy, Epicurean evening ahead, complete with well-earned aperitif, and a convivial al fresco dinner stretching long into the night!

4. Head up Mount Etna for the last of the snow! That's right, over the 3,000m level you might still find a little snow on Etna! The summer is an excellent time to go up A Muntagna, with visibility often good. You can get off the beaten track by taking one of our 4x4 vulcanologist-guided trips...

See what's on in Sicily in other months >>

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