The Infiorata in Noto | Sicily

A guide to all that's best about May in Sicily


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

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

For bespoke, enriching additions that transform a great holiday into a truly unforgettable experience, why not take a look at our Think Experiences?!

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

 back to top

Festivals and events in Sicily

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

Giro della Sicilia
A semi-competitive cycling tour for keen amateur riders, spread over 5 stages.

Where? the north coast of Sicily, the Madonie Mountains, the Nebrodi Mountains, and Mount Etna 
When? 27th April-2nd May 2019

The Targa Florio Classic
One of the oldest competitive motor car races in the world is battled out on the flanks of the Madonie Mountains. Competitors arrive from around the world with the trusty classic cars for a series of reliability races and time trials.

Where? Palermo and the Madonie Mountains,
When? 4th - 6th May 2019

The Greek Theatre Festival
A month and a half of ancient Greek plays in the original Greek Theatre in Syracuse. The 2019 season is dedicated to the theme of women and war, and includes the following plays: The Trojan Women and Helen by Euripides, and Lysistrata by Aristophanes.

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

Settimana delle Cultura
An annual week-long programme of cultural activities, concerts, exhibitions and much more besides. 

Where? Palermo
When? 11th-19th May 2019

Avinando WineFest
A weekend of wine-tastings, workshops and opportunities to discover the world of Sicilian wine in all its many guises. Many of the island's most prestigious producers participate.

Where? Palermo
11th - 12th May 2019

Gustissimo and the Manifestazioni Garibaldine 
Three days devoted to Sicily's traditional street food, the island's most authentic gastronomic products, wine and artisinal beers. On the 11th, Garibaldi's historical arrival in Marsala to begin the reunification of Italy is celebrated with costumed parades, music and general partying.

Where? Marsala
When? 10th - 12th May 2019

Buongiorno Ceramica!
A nationwide event celebrating Italy's unparalleled traditions in the creation of ceramics. In Sicily, artists' studios, craft workshops and museums in four of the region's most renowned ceramics centres will be open to the public. A piece of Sicilian ceramics is the perfect gift for someone at home (or indeed for yourself!).

Where? Caltagirone, Burgio, Santo Stefano di Camastra and Sciacca 
When? 18th and 19th May 2019

Pink Floyd Carmen Suite
Svetlana Zakharova  the great Russian ballerina stars in a ballet created by Micha van Hoecke to the music of Atom Heart Mother by Pink Floyd.

Where? Teatro Massimo, Palermo
When? 8th May - 14th May  2019

The Infiorata di Noto
A flower art festival during which artists come from around the world to cover Via Nicolaci with their petal mosaics. This year's theme is I Siciliani in America (Sicilians in America).

Where? Noto
When? 17th - 19th May 2019

Little Sicily
Sicilian food, wine, folklore, traditions, music and cinema are celebrated for three days at this spring festival.

Where? Capo d'Orlando
When? 17th - 19th May 2019

La Via degli Odori
The gorgeous old centre of Gangi plays host to a floral festival, the historic streets lined with fragrant flowers, plants and medicinal herbs. To complement the event, there are stands showing off the town's local agricultural produce, from cheese to pasta and more.

Where? Gangi in the Madonie Mountains
When? 18th - 19th May 2019  

World Festival on the Beach
Mondello's long-running annual beach and water sports festival includes wind-surfing, kite-surfing, surfing and beach volleyball competitions. In the evening it's all about partying.

Where? Mondello
When? 24th - 26th May 2019

International Kite Festival
The 10th edition of this wonderful family event. The long, white sandy beach of San Vito lo Capo is given over to an exhibition of kite-flying from all over the world. 

Where? San Vito lo Capo (on the northwestern tip of Sicily)
When? 16th - 19th May 2019

Sagra del Cannolo
One of Sicily's best-loved specialities, the mighty cannolo is celebrated for three days.

Where? Aci Bonaccorsi
When? 24th - 26th May 2019

Teatro dei Due Mari di Tindari

The Greek Theatre Festival in Syracuse is rivalled by the smaller but no less interesting Festival del Teatro dei Due Mari at the wonderful Greek theatre in Tindari's archaeological site. With the sea and the Aeolian Islands as the backdrop you can watch two plays. 

Where? Tindari archeaological site
When? 2019 dates not yet confirmed

Madame Butterfly
One of Puccini's most popular operas.

Where? Teatro Bellini in Catania
When? 10th - 17th May 2019

Beer Catania Spring
For those with a taste for craft beer, Catania beer festival is the place to be at the end of May. In the fine surroundings of the cloisters of Istituto Ardizzone Gioeni, near the top of Via Etnea, there'll be around 20 producers, street food stands and live music.

Where? Catania
When? 24th - 26th May 2019

Cantine Aperte
As part of a nationwide event, over 30 of Sicily's best wineries, including our friends at Planeta, will be opening their doors to the public. Guests will be able to take tours of the vineyards and the cantine, taste wines and indulge in some tasty local specialities.

Where? Planeta's wineries: Ulmo, in Sambuca di Sicilia near Menfi; Feudo di Mezzo in Passopisciaro, on the northern flanks of  Mount Etna; and Buonivini near Noto
When? 25th  - 26th May 2019

 back to top

What to eat in Sicily in May

May is the month when Spring is at its most bountiful in Sicily. 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

tuna fish
fava beans
wild fennel

What to order

Fritella (a sweet and sour dish of fresh peas, fava beans and artichokes)
Carciofi al forno (roasted artichokes stuffed with garlic, breadcrumbs, ham and cheese)
Pasta con le sarde (pasta with sardines and wild fennel)
Pasta con i piselli (pasta with peas)
Tonno in agrodolce (tuna steak with sweet and sour onions)
Agnello alla Messinese (roast lamb with potatoes)
Granita alla fragola (a refreshing strawberry crushed ice dish)
Cannoli di ricotta (one of Sicily's signature desserts - a crunchy pastry tube filled with delicious sweetened ricotta cheese and chocolate chips) 

See our definitive Sicilian recipe page >>

 back to top

Our top tips for May in Sicily


1. Enjoy some of Sicily's best beaches without the summer crowds: many of Sicily's best beaches can get crowded in late July and August. Going in May, however, you'll probably have most of the sand to yourself! Try San Vito lo Capo near Trapani (voted Italy's best beach by TripAdvisor users), Mondello (near Palermo), Mazzaro' below Taormina or Marina di Ragusa in the south-east.

2. May is the perfect month for visiting the sights: the weather in May is generally sunny and warm, but never too hot! This makes it an excellent period in which to visit Sicily's wealth of Greek archaeological sites and historic towns.

3. Go walking in the blooming mountains! Sicily's mountains really come to life in May. Spring flowers carpet the slopes and the weather is perfect for hiking and walking. We're particularly fond of the Madonie Mountains, but the Nebrodi Mountains are spectacularly beautiful too.

4. Go flamingo-spotting at Vendicari! Vendicari Nature Reserve is a fabulous place to go in May. The beaches are sublime and it's a great spot for a walk and a picnic... and, if you're lucky, you'll even see some flamingoes feeding in the salt-water lagoons!


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

Rent a car in Sicily

Having a car will help you make the most from your holiday to Sicily. Get the best deal here.

Show all car hire
Mouse X
Mouse Y
Mouse Speed
Mouse Direction