My husband and I will be spending September and October in Sicily and have one week during this time to travel. We would love some realistic suggestions about where to go and how to get there with a toddler. We think that renting a car is the best way to get around. Also, should we bring our own car seat if the only time we'll need it is to and from the airport and for one week of travel?
Sicily is quite a large island as you will already know if you have looked at a map. As to "realistic suggestions about where to go and how to get there", a purchase of a good guide book at this point is my realistic suggestion. You will need one anyway, so buy it now, have a good read and come back with questions.
As for the car seat, you say you will be in Sicily for 2 months, perhaps visiting family? Maybe they can help with a borrowed car seat.
I always take my own carseat when we travel. I like knowing that the seat is clean and safe. I just don't trust the saftey or quality of rented seats. I've never been to Sicily, but I watched No Reservations where Anthony went to Sicily. I learned that you can skip the salt fields.
Having some time where your littlie can play in the sand would be relaxing. Cefalu/Mondello would not be busy then, and the beach areas along the south coast are numerous. With all of the baggage travelling with a small child entails, a car would be preferable. Would you be using a stroller, or a 'backpack' carrier for your child? I am sooooo envious of you having such a long time in Sicily.
I thought the salt production area near Trapani rather fascinating.
Thanks for the input---we have many guide books, but I was looking for some specifics from people who may have been to Palermo and around Sicily with a toddler. We're there for work, no family involved, so we have a lot of limitations on time and no real resources to help us with equipment, etc. That is why I was looking for more opinions...
Where would your base be out of?
Also, what would your interests be?
We don't have children, and have never traveled with them, but I might have some suggestions.
Renting a car would be a good idea if you'll have parking for it- and do you have experience with Sicilian/Italian roads?
I rented a vehicle and drove the island counter clockwise starting in Palermo (But I had 2 weeks). Your interests will determine our suggestions. I absolutely loved the North & South Western side of the Island as the beaches are unspoiled and the ruins are breath taking!
Since you mentioned Palermo, is that where you will be working? If so, you can take the train to Cefalu on weekends for the beach, or the bus to Mondello.
If you’ll be driving a lot, a rental car seat wouldn’t be practical. Bring your own from home, or buy a seat at Auchan Palermo. If you’ll only be driving one week, rent the car seat.
Your toddler might enjoy Palermo’s puppet museum.
If you’d like to spend time in the west, San Vito hosts its Cous Cous Fest in September. You could bike the Salt Road, take the cable car to Erice, the ferry to Favignana, and walk the ruins at Selinunte.
Or if you’re spending time in the west and would like to visit the east, see Siracusa. There’s another puppet museum in Siracusa and an aquarium. The better beaches are located south of Siracusa. Mount Etna is always worth a visit.
Here are some ideas for activities for children.