Hints are flying around the dinner table on how best to see the Valley of the Temples, Agrigento’s claim to fame.
The most important one, we are told, is to catch a taxi from the parking area to the other end of the park. An easy walk then leads you back to the car park, via the temples.
It will be the best 2E per person you spend that day! Look for the sign!
The Valle dei Templi archaeological park consists of 7 temples built between 510BC & 430BC.
The Temple of Hera, dating from 450BC is the first we see.
The Temple of Concordia is one of the best preserved Doric Temples in the Valley. It was converted into a church in the 6th century AD.
There are also early Christian ruins in the park. The Catacombs were cut out of rock to house the bodies of the Christians and the ruins of this network can be seen.
The Temple of Heracles dates from the 6th century. The eight columns were restored to their original position in 1922 thanks to the efforts of an Englisman, Mr William Hardcastle.
After crossing the road, we come to the ruins of the Temple of Olympian Zeus and the Temple of Castor and Pollux which is being restored.
The Temple of Olympian Zeus would have been one of the largest built.
The five steps on which it was built are still standing. In between the columns would have been giant statues called Telamon. A replica of one of the Telamons, which was not in fragments, can be seen. The original is in the Archaeological Museum
Under the passway and we are back at the car park. Easy!!
The decision is made to drive home via the Scala dei Turchi, Italy’s white cliffs.
A detour on the road flusters the tom tom but all of a sudden they appear, standing out against the blue sea.
To climb the cliffs, take the steps beside the restaurant.
We arrive back at Mandranova just in time for aperitivo!