The Scala dei Turchi, the Moors and Realmonte

Explore the extraordinary beauty of the Scala dei Turchi, a unique natural jewel located in Realmonte, Sicily. This iconic site, recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, enchants visitors from all corners of the world with its majestic white limestone cliffs that rise elegantly over the shores of the Mediterranean Sea.

The Moors

The name, to tell the truth, already says it all. It also tells of a mistake Sicilians have been carrying around for centuries. “The Turks“-in dialect, “i tucchi” with the double consonant still resisting in speech-are actually the Moors. That is, the people of Arab origin who began to invade Sicily beginning in the 7th century AD.

At that time, Byzantium was far away and its influence could not extend to one of its most peripheral provinces. Meanwhile, the island played a key role in Mediterranean trade, a business the Arabs were trying to conquer.

La Scala dei Turchi i Mori e Realmonte
Image by Sicilying

The Scala dei Turchi consists mainly of limestone and clay and is of the purest color. As if this were not enough, its gentle shapes exactly resemble those of a staircase.

It is said that the Moors used it this way to get to the top of the cliff and access the town of Realmonte and, from there, Agrigento. Today, if the “Turks” returned to land in the Agrigento area, the spectacle they would find before them would certainly be different from what they witnessed a little less than 1,500 years ago. This true masterpiece of nature is also mentioned in the novels about Commissario Montalbano, written by Andrea Camilleri.

La Scala dei Turchi i Mori e Realmonte
Image by Sicilying

Recommended experiences

After enjoying this natural wonder, stop for lunch at one of the nearby restaurants, where you will find local dishes prepared with fresh, wholesome ingredients. And if you decide to stay longer, you will have no difficulty finding lodging: the area is full of B&Bs and hotels that will make your stay in Realmonte comfortable and unforgettable.

In just one day, treat yourself to an extraordinary experience that will leave you breathless. Departing from the picturesque small port of San Leone, set sail aboard a charming sailboat that will take you in front of the majestic Scala dei Turchi. On board, you’ll not only have the opportunity to delight your palate with local delicacies, such as fresh shrimp and renowned Sicilian pistachios, but you’ll also have the equipment to explore the underwater wonders by snorkeling or, if you prefer, ride the waves by surfing.

Once back ashore, the fun continues the options are endless and varied, ensuring an unforgettable experience for all tastes and preferences.

La Scala dei Turchi i Mori e Realmonte
Image by Sicilying

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