sunset golden hour on ortigia has inspired quotes about sicily

Best Quotes About Sicily

Sicily is technically a part of Italy but you know you are in a place that is truly unique as soon as step foot on the island. Sicily is its own being. It has endured thousands of years of occupation and outside influence, all of which have left a fascinating impact on the region. 

The patchwork of Sicilian history, combined with the rugged natural beauty of the interior and the insanely gorgeous beaches, has inspired Sicilians and visitors alike to wax poetic about the incredible island.

Looking for inspiration for your next trip? Here are all of my favorite quotes about Sicily to encourage you to book that ticket as soon as possible. 

Best Quotes about Sicily

Sicilians build things like they will live forever and eat like they will die tomorrow.

-Plato, Philosopher

man behind fruit and vegetable stand at Palermo market in Sicily

Going to Sicily is better than going to the moon.

-Gabriel Garcìa Màrquez, Spanish author and playwright

Ortigia Sicily at sunset

Sicily is a blessed land. First, because of its geographic position in the Mediterranean. Second, for its history and all the different peoples who have settled there: Arabs, Greeks, Normans, the Swedes. That has made us different from others. We exaggerate, we overdo. We love Greek tragedy. We cry, we fight, sometimes for nothing.

―Marcello Giordani, Singer

Palermo streets

I do not envy God’s paradise because I am so satisfied to live in Sicily.

―Federico II, Holy Roman Emperor, and King of Sicily

Whatever may happen to the Sicilians, they comment on it with a joke.

―Cicero, Roman orator

Palermo Sicily accommodation

Sicily is more beautiful than any woman.

―Truman Capote, writer

Visiting Italy without going to Sicily leaves no image in the spirit. It is Sicily that is the key to everything!

―Goethe, German poet

people in the main church square in Ortigia Sicily

Throughout the history of the human race, no land and no people have suffered so terribly from slavery, from foreign conquests and oppression, and none have struggled so irrepressibly for emancipation as Sicily and the Sicilians. Almost from the time when Polyphemus promenaded around Etna, or when Ceres taught the Siculi the culture of grain, to our day, Sicily has been the theater of uninterrupted invasions and wars, and of unflinching resistance. The Sicilians are a mixture of almost all southern and northern races; first, of the aboriginal Sicanians, with Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Greeks, and slaves from all regions under heaven, imported into the island by traffic or war; and then of Arabs, Normans, and Italians. The Sicilians, in all these transformations and modifications, have battled, and still battle, for their freedom.

―Marx and Engels, German co-founders of Communism

Water outside the walls of Oritigia Sicily in Siracusa

…On the sixth day,
God accomplished His work
And, pleased with all the beauty
He had created,
He took the Earth in His hands,
And kissed it.
There, where He put His lips,
That’s Sicily.

― Renzino Barbera, Artist, Actor, Poet

view of the city of Palermo Sicily from the cathedral rooftop

I hate and detest Sicily in so far as I love it, and in so far as it does not respond to the kind of love I would like to have for it.

― Leonardo Sciascia

Market in Palermo Sicily with people standing at brightly colored stalls

All Sicilian expression, even the most violent, is really wish fulfillment: our sensuality is a hankering for oblivion, our shooting and knifing a hankering for death; our laziness, our spiced and drugged sherbets, a hankering for voluptuous immobility, that is, for death again; our meditative air is that of a void wanting to scrutinize the enigmas of nirvana.

― Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa in his book The Leopard

looking down a narrow street in Sicily

And my favorite quote from Sicily is an Italian proverb:

L’ amuri è come a tussi- nun si po ammucciari

Which translates from dialect to mean: love is like a cough―impossible to hide!

Do you have any other favorite quotes about Sicily? 

4 Comments

  • Reply Mark Adams March 26, 2019 at 6:00 pm

    Hi there. My favorite quote from Sicily, and it rings so true to how the Sicilians view the world was said to me, in the sky high town of Castelmola, above Taormina. I was in a ceramic shop and remarked that I have bought many pieces in Deruta, Umbria, which is famous for ceramics.
    The shop keeper dismissed that with a sweep of her hand and said dismissively, “ah, that’s in Italy”
    Indeed it is, Deruta isn’t in Sicily.
    Time to go back to that wonderful, raw island so different from, say Italy
    Bests, Mark
    p.s. I know what/where Anthony Bourdain had the cacio e pepe in Rome. The secret is safe with me.

    • Reply Natalie March 27, 2019 at 12:37 am

      YES – exactly! It is Italy, but it isn’t

  • Reply GIM March 27, 2019 at 10:38 pm

    Sicily is such a beautiful region and I agree with many of the quotes on its beauty and importance. I’ve lived in Palermo, and it was such a wonderful experience!

  • Reply Gabriella April 10, 2019 at 1:18 pm

    Hello! I am planning a trip to Italy in August with my husband and parents (prime tourist time, I know ) Anyways, having never been to Sicily I was wondering if you could offer some recommendations on where to stay. Trying to decide between Taormina/Catania or Cefalu/Palermo. We are only here for 4.5 days and would prefer not to spend a ton of time driving all over the island.

    Although beautiful I’m sure, we are not particularly interested in the ancient ruins/historical aspect but more interested in great beaches, food, while experiencing a beautiful local feel if that makes sense. We are only here for 4.5 days and would prefer not to spend a ton of time driving all over the island.

    Thank you very much!

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