Trapani (accent on the first syllable) is a lovely city in western Sicily with a unique character different from the other cities on the island. There is something sleepy and wistful about it, particularly during a hot afternoon day. Also, because of its geographical situation, there is water on two sides of the city. This was my second visit to Trapani following a less memorable one on my way to Tunisia in the summer of 2005. Perhaps my "never-again" 10-hour ferry trip from Trapani to Tunis influenced my view of the city, but I am glad I gave it another chance. Trapani is a city that deserves your full attention.
For starters, the food in Trapani is similar to other Sicilian cuisine, but with a very unique flair. A couple of the more distinct dishes in Trapani are pasta alla Trapanese (made with a pesto of tomatoes and almonds) and fish couscous, due to Sicily's island nature and proximity to North Africa. On this particular afternoon, we had a late lunch at a casual deli-style restaurant, and sat outside on the couches.
Classic, standard Sicilian treats- arancini and pizzette
I love to hit candy stores in every city I go to. A lot of the treats are the same from country to country but there are always a few fun local specialties.
We peeked inside this courtyard which was beautiful. The building contained a bed and breakfast as well as apartment units. It even came complete with an old fashioned basket "elevator" for lifting heavy shopping items up to your apartment. I noticed that the afternoon nap was much more pronounced in this part of Sicily, with nary a soul on the street. This made the evening stroll that much more pronounced as multi-generational families gathered for the Italian custom of the passeggiata. A walk through the old town is particularly special; the way the sunlight bathes the buildings is magical and the lack of cars on the promenade makes it very pedestrian friendly.