Noto has always played a front-line role in the history of the island, but was almost entirely destroyed by the devastating earthquake of 1693, to which paradoxically the town today owes its fame.
After being destroyed, the city was rebuilt by talented architects. They created one of the finest Baroque towns in Sicily, which in 2002 was declared by UNESCO (together with other nearby towns) a world heritage site.
The town’s historic centre is a magnificent hymn to Sicilian Baroque, and finds its best expressions in the beautiful Cathedral, Ducezio Palace, the Royal Gate and the many other civil and religious buildings which make the city a wonderful garden of carved stone.
Baroque architecture is not the only attraction. Noto is set in an area rich in attractions: fine beaches, nature areas and archaeological treasures. We suggest a visit to the Vendicari Reserve, a wonderful nature and ornithological oasis, to the pleasant small town of Marzamemi, and the many beaches of the south-eastern coast, such as Calamosche.
Not to be missed in Noto
The Baroque town centre
The eight towns of the Val di Noto
The nature reserve and bird sanctuary of Vendicari
Where to stay overnight at Noto
You can choose between a hotel in the historic centre and lodgings in the surroundings, where refurbished farmhouses and country mansions offer visitors an unforgettable experience of the Sicilian countryside.
When to visit Noto
The mild climate marking Sicily means that Noto can be visited in all seasons of the year. Choose the summer if you want to add a touch of culture to your beach holiday, the rest of the year if your aim is to wander through the beauties of the Val di Noto avoiding the heat of the summer months.