The Town of Noto is internationally known and protected by the UNESCO because of the extreme beauty of the area and its high artistic value; it is located 10 kms from our resort and served everyday by our free shuttle. Noto, the pearl of Sicilian Baroque style, stands high on a rocky area about 160 meters above the sea level. Noto strikes you immediately because of the extraordinary homogeneity of its town-planning: it was built in an octagonal plan and is crossed through by the main streets. The “Stone Garden”, as it is commonly called, contains a never-ending number of baroque monuments that appear on the streets and squares. The most commonly used material is the limestone, which creates an extremely spectacular effect at sunset, when the sunlight brings out a pinkish hue from the majestic façades. The center of the town is Piazza Municipio, with its wonderful staircase that takes you up to the Cathedral of San Giorgio, surrounded by gorgeous baroque buildings such as Palazzo Vescovile, Palazzo Ducezio and Palazzo Landolina di Sant'Alfano. The most interesting event that is organized in the town is without a doubt the "Infiorata". Thus, during the last week of May, Noto is literally covered in flowers: the roads, squares and courtyards are covered in pictures made from colored petals that form various subjects and patterns.
The Beach of San Lorenzo is an uncontaminated stretch of golden sand: it is located 10 kms from our resort and it is served by our free shuttle. The beach is characterized by its uncontaminated and crystalline waters, which probably represent the most beautiful in Sicily thanks to its perfect and ever changing colours. The area also features a day resort to take advantage of any beach comfort, sport and activity.
The Village of Marzamemi is a fishing village nestling atop a small promontory; it is located 15 kms from our Resort and sometimes we serve it with our free shuttle. The village is raised around the tuna-fishing ground of Princes of Villadorata and here the atmosphere is of old times, the colour of boats and the smell of sea fascinate any visitor. Marzamemi was also film set of "Sud" of G. Salvatores and "L'uomo delle stelle" of G. Tornatore. In the second half of the 19th century a harbor was built near the already existing tuna-fishery and the 1600’s villa of the Princes of Villadorata. The village is also surrounded by pretty beaches with crystaline water and in summer becomes a night meeting point for locals and tourists of the area.
The City of Siracusa has a glorious past that was a worthy rival of Athens, Carthage and Rome for winning over domination of the island, is today one of the most interesting cities in Sicily, the cradle of theatre and a fantastic monument to baroque architecture. Siracusa stands on the East coast of Sicily, next to the clear blue sea and with two famous rivers, the Ciane and the Anapo; it is located 40 kms from our rsort and we organize day tours to discover its wonders. Poets and writers, from Cicero to D’Annunzio were inspired by the beauty of this place and by the legends linked to this area. Most of the interesting places in Siracusa are discovered as you walk around the Ortigia Island, which is the oldest part of Siracusa. Being preserved as a town complex by the UNESCO, it is the only town in the world to have the privilege of being in the World Heritage List in block. The island is a charming place that hides wonders through its typical lanes and can be said an open-air museum. The origins of this ancient city are mixed up with myths and legends, and some of the manmade and natural wonders that have survived for thousands years to witness such a glorious past are the Greek theatre, the Roman Amphitheatre, the Orecchio di Dionisio, the Grotta dei Cordari, The Fountain of Aretusa, the Eurialo Castle and the Maniace Castle. While, baroque masterpieces that still stand on the remains of ancient temples and churches are the Cathedral Duomo, the Church of Santa Lucia and of the Church of San Giovanni. To be mentioned also Siracusa's museums, to have a detailed picture of its culture and history: the Regional Archeological Museum, the Bellomo Museum, and the Papyrus Museum. The most important event of the year is the Theatre Festival dedicated to the ancient Greek drama. It takes place in May and June, when the Greek Theatre comes back more then 2000 years to show its ancient splendour with dramas by Greek authors represented in their original style.
The Town of Ragusa Ibla is located in the south-eastern corner of SIcily, 40 kms from our resort and we organize day tours to visit it. It is the meeting point between Baroque and popular culture. A meeting that created a special architectural style, made of anthropomorphic deformed masks with grotesque expressions, fantasy animals, pretty angels, and plenty of horns filled with fruit. The rivalries between the aristocratic families of old and new lineage, striving to display their superiority in wealth and style, led to the creation of the beautiful palaces and churches that still constitute the main architectural profile of the city. These are the treasures that make the Ragusa of today worthy of UNESCO recognition as a World Heritage Site. Ragusa Ibla is indeed an open museum of Baroque architecture and is a city that can be discovered and to fall in love with. The magnificent Duomo di San Giorgio with its slightly asymmetric staircase, the rich Baroque facade, and a Neoclassic dome leave the visitor breathless. The square before the cathedral is enriched by many aristocratic buildings such as Palazzo Arezzi and Palazzo Donnafugata and a walk around the city takes you from Palace to Palace, from Church to Church in a labyrinth of charming narrow and intricate streets. This part of the city has now a thriving life with excellent restaurants, bars and pubs, small hotels in restored old palaces, the University of Ragusa and the many events that regularly take place there.
The Avola Lakes provide the opportunity of exploring a small and forgotten corner of the Iblei Mountain landscape, the karst range dominating the southeast part of Sicily. This area is off the beaten track and it is of particular interest to nature-lovers, it is located 25 kms from our resort and we organize day tours to visit it. From the viewpoint you can already watch a magnificent view over the Cava Grande Gorge plunging down between impressively tall and sheer limestone cliffs. Along the valley bottom winds the river which opens out intermittently to make a succession of tiny lakes, accessible by a path leading down into the gorge. Slightly to the left, a cave may be seen excavated from the rock: this is the so-called Grotta dei Briganti (Bandits Cave), just one of the many rock-hewn dwellings in this settlement, and another example of the type so commonly found throughout the rocky landscape of south-east Sicily. At bottom of the gorge, the bush gives way to an open clearing set around a series of natural rock pools created by the river,. The flat rounded slabs of rock are also the ideal for whiling away in the sunshine. In summer, the cool water is very tempting. Furthermore, the rock pools are surrounded on all sides by the most idyllic scenery far removed from anything found elsewhere in Sicily, and so providing an unusual and highly recommended alternative to a swim in the sea off the Mediterranean coast.
The Village of Portopalo di Capo Passero comprises the small picturesque archetypal fishing-village; it is placed 20 kms from our resort and we organize day tours to visit it. Naturally, the hub of activity is the harbour where, between noon and 2pm, the fishing-boats return and the quays suddenly throng with curious old men and busy housewives come to purchase the fresh catch straight from the sea. The 1800’s Chiesa di San Gaetano is the most attractive building. The shore is endowed with beautiful sand beaches and a splendid view stretches across the water to the open horizon: a seascape which changes tirelessly at the whim of the elements. A short way offshore lies the Island of Capo Passero with its luxuriant and rare vegetation and wildlife, landmarked by a 1600’s tower, built at Charles V’s behest to defend the coast, and a lighthouse.
The Correnti Island stands at the far end of Sicily; it is located at about 25 kms from our resort and we organize day trips to visit them. This strip of land lies just under the parallel of Tunis, where the Mediterranean Sea and the Ionian Sea merge into each other. The island is linked to the coast by an artificial wharf. It is one of the favorite places for surf and windsurf lovers, due to the waves and the winds that lap it. Nature lovers also love the place: in spite of the sparse vegetation, the Isola delle Correnti is home to wild rabbits, albatrosses and other species of birds, and also to several fish species in the surrounding sea.
The Town and Gorge of Ispica are situated on a hill 15 kms from our resort and we organize day tours to visit them. From one side of the hill you can admire a great view of the coast line while on the other side of the hill lies the deep canyon of Ispica, which is 13km long and stretches through the territory of Ispica and Modica. Although the town is not one of the UNESCO World Heritage sites, it has excellent examples of Sicilian Baroque architecture, the most famous of which is the church of Santa Maria Maggiore. It is also worth visiting for the wonderful Liberty architecture and the characteristic narrow roads of the quartiere del Carmine, the first nucleus of houses built on the hill. It is most certainly worth visiting the Parco Forza in the gorge of Ispica. You can easily access two main parts of this 13km long canyon, one part is closer to Modica, the other is just outside Ispica. In the gorge you can find remains of troglodyte dwellings and Medieval villages as well as necropolises. This was a lively city, before the earthquake in 1693.
The Town of Modica is a picturesque town that lies in the southern part of the Iblei Mountains; it is located 25 kms. It is divided into a high and low part, both completely rebuilt after the devastating earthquake of 1693. The town has many palaces and churches in late Baroque style, that stand between the typical lanes and the buildings. The Church of San Giorgio, dedicated to the city’s patron saint, is a monumental example of Baroque architecture including a staircase of 250 steps, that was built after the church in 1818.A walk along Corso Umberto is well worth it. This road is Modica’s viewing lounge, right up to Piazza Principe di Napoli, where you can find the Municipal Buildings (Palazzo Municipale) and the castle walls that have survived time and nature’s hazards.
The Gorge of Pantalica was the setting of the ancient town of Hybla, which has been inhabited since the Bronze Age. The narrow valley through which ran the Anapo river, together with the Cavagrande were naturally defensible in that they comprised two deep gorges with one means of access. Today, little survives of the original town, except for an incredible number of tombs in the steep limestone cliffs. An expedition through the protected area around the Anapo valley reveals an extraordinary landscape comprising a succession of gorges defined by vertical cliffs. For those who do not wish to walk the whole route, there is an alternative clearly marked track that combines both natural and archeological points of interest, leading to the Cavetta necropolis and the Filiporto necropolis, where can be seen a series of vents pertaining to the Galermi aqueduct.
The Town of Palazzolo Acreide, which derives from the ancient town of Akrai (founded in 664 BC), occupies a plateau dominating the gorges of the upper valley of the River Anapo, at the heart of the Iblean mountains, it is located 35 kms. At the top of the hill of the ancient town of Acrai, where the acropolis used to lie, all that is visible of the small Greek theatre built of white stone is the floor of the orchestra and this actually dates from Roman times. Two former Greek quarries next to the theatre were converted by the Christians for use as catacombs and troglodyte dwellings. Excavation of the area along the fence has uncovered vestiges of a residential quarter and a circular building, probably a temple built in Roman times. The track that skirts around the edge of the archeological site provides a lovely view over the surrounding valley, reinforcing the strategic positioning of the ancient city, founded as a defensive outpost of Syracuse. I Santoni – 1km from the archeological site. Tucked away in a small valley nearby, there are twelve rock-hewn figures dating from the 3C BC to testify the existence in Sicily of a cult of oriental origin. The modern town of Palazzolo was largely rebuilt in the 18th century and so has many Baroque buildings lining its main thoroughfares: Corso Vittorio Emanuele and Via Carlo Alberto which intersect at Piazza del Popolo.
The Old Town of Noto is set in a lush vegetation. The road leading up the old Noto is signposted by the Monastery of San Corrado fuori le Mura. Near the monastery, built in the 1700, is the cave where the saint refuged and lived in the 14th century. Along the main road you will find also the Sanctuary of Santa Maria della Scala. Inside, beside the baptismal font, is a fine arch in the Arab-Norman style. A little further on was the old Noto, destroyed by the terrible 1693 earthquake. The original city, the so-called Noto Antica, grew up around an ancient nucleus founded by the Siculi in the 9th century BC. Among the vestiges of the Greek period are Hellenic walls, the remains of a gymnasium and of the places of worship of the heroized dead. The fortress is from the Arab era (7th-11th centuries AD). In the 15th century a castle and other fortifications were added. The city was destroyed by an earthquake in 1693 and rebuilt where is now the modern Noto.
The Town of Pozzallo is a fishing and beach town located 20 kms from our resort and we organize day trips to visit it. Looking out onto the sea and with splendid Mediterranean scrub behind it, where carob trees dominate the landscape. The beaches are truly wonderful, the water is crystal-clear and the landscape is historically and culturally interesting.
The most important monument in this medieval village is the majestic Torre Cabrera, a tower built around 1400 to defend the place from pirate attacks. This is also an important port from where leaves the 90 minutes ferry to Malta.
At Dancing Flamingo East meets West in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. Our Resort is situated in a very special location characterized by the combination of the Mediterranean countryside, history, and beaches. We have an international experience in hospitality and natural treatments, characterized by the fusion of Western, Latin, and Oriental culture. Therefore, beyound Italian, we also speak English and Spanish fluently or as natives. Our final purpouse is to offer a unique experience beyond a peaceful, exotic, simple, and comfortable stay in the Pearl of the Mediterranean.
We have different types of accommodation to suite different kinds of people. The Tropical Bungalows, which have shared bathroom and are entirely made of wood and canes to suite a more exotic experience. The Ocean Room, which has bathroom ensuite and is characterized by light blue colours to suite the ocean lovers. The Country Room, which has bathroom ensuite and is characterized by green and light brown colours to suite the countryside lovers. The Stone Garden Suite, which has bathroom ensuite and features the traditional shape of a Sicilian farmhouse with internal walls and a private courtyard in coble-stone to experience the traditional Sicily. The caravan and tent sites, which suite the camping lovers.
Our restaurant offers local and international breakfast, lunch (or packet lunch), and dinner with a different Mediterranean menu everyday; as well as a good selection of local wines and drinks, and even free cooking lessons. As for our health centre, we are specialized exclusively in Indian ayurvedic beauty treatments, Chinese reflexology and traditional Thai massage, therefore classic beauty and health services will not be provided.
In addition we offer day tours to historic and natural places off the beaten track, transfer from Catania airport, and free shuttle to the near beaches and the baroque town of Noto. We also have laundry and baby-sitting services. Please note that this is a summer resort and thus during the rest of the year most of the activities and services will not be offered.
There are several daily connecting flights from all-around-he-world and several daily direct flights from various airports in UK, France, Spain, Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium, Romania, Slovakia, Czeck Republic, Hungary, Russia, and Poland to Catania International Airport. From there you can rent a car (contact us to know the lowest cost companies) or take a public bus or our private minibus (please contact us in advance to reserve it).
Take the bus (AST or Interbus) from Catania airport to Noto town, we will pick you up there. Please contact us in advance to know the exact timetable of the buses and to organize your pick up, so tht you will not have to wait.
From Catania or Catania Airport, take the national road (SS114) directed to Siracusa, which will become a highway after some 20 kms. Do not exit the highway at Siracusa, but keep on and exit after some 25 kms at Noto/Noto Marina. Then take the provincial road to Noto and after 2 kms, turn left following the directions to Pachino (SP 19). After some 5 kms turn right to the provincial road Codalupo (SP 11). After some 5 kms you will find on the left the sign of our resort indicating to go for a local road. We are on the left after 500 mts. (Do not trust old maps as we gave directions based on the new highway due to open in May 2007).