Erice in Sicily, a village with a sea view and the fire of Aphrodite

You are in Sicily, in Trapani to be precise, where the horizon seen from Mount San Giuliano is a large white expanse. Blinding white, like the great valley of the salt-pans seen from above. Here, among the cobblestone streets of a medieval village suspended between sky and sea, with a touch of imagination it is possible to glimpse the Goddess Aphrodite who ignites a fire each night to protect sailors.
The ancient Romans, on the other hand, believed that Venus Erycina watched over sailors and built a temple and a castle in her honour.
Venus Castle is your starting point as soon as you have reached the top of Erice. This is one of the most spectacular villages in Italy, a must-see during your Sicilian holiday.
From the Balio, the English-style garden of the Castle, you can enjoy a unique view as far as the Egadi Islands. Here, the streets of Erice speak of history, mythology and the charm of a central meeting place for people and science. Each year, scientists from all over the world get together at the scientific cultural centre of “Ettore Majorana” to discuss a wide variety of themes, from astronomy to law to reach as far as chemistry, medicine and philology.
The heart of the village is piazza Umberto I with the town hall that houses the Cordici museum where, among others,  it is possible to admire the Annunciation of Antonello Gagini and a magnificent head of Aphrodite dating to the 5th century B.C.  A short distance away, after a maze of lanes lined with craft shops that exhibit their own pottery products and hand-woven rugs, there is the Church of San Giuliano with its pink stone façade built by the Normans around the year 1000. We reach the salt valley once again and Trapani with its impressive gulf and the port facing onto the Tyrrhenian Sea.
Click here to continue your journey in Sicily with the guide written by the journalist-writer Carlo Cambi for Italianfoodxp!