Modica itself is a thriving, beautiful baroque town with an abundance of art, history and archaeology enjoying easy access to the spectacular scenery of this prosperous, unspoilt south-eastern corner of Sicily. Whilst still far from established on the international tourist trail the town was extensively featured in the BBC series Sicily Unpacked. The town boasts dozens of excellent restaurants all of which have to survive on local trade, so standards across established businesses are uniformly high. Modica is also famous for its chocolate, made to an original Aztec recipe imported by the Spanish that famously doesn’t melt even in the height of the Sicilian summer and indeed the town is host to an annual chocolate festival.
In 2008, Modica and the surrounding towns in the Val di Noto (UNESCO world heritage site) were established by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Following the disastrous earthquake of 1693 the towns were rebuilt – with a seemingly limitless budget – at the pinnacle of the Baroque era and this corner of Sicily rewards the traveler with a dazzling array of beautiful 18th century architecture.
In more recent times the area has become famous as the location for the renowned Italian TV series ‘Inspector Montalbano’ which has recently been syndicated to BBC 4.
The famous towns of Noto, Siracusa and Caltagirone are all easily reached with Taormina and Etna being a comfortable day trip away. The local landscape offers a dramatic choice between the mountainous interior, low-lying hills topped by centuries old carrubo trees and the gentle coastline typified by small sandy coves such as those found at the Vendicari nature reserve.
We bought a house here because we fell in love with this part of Sicily. We’ve traveled extensively through Europe and eventually we bought our house in Modica in one of the two most thriving (the alternative being Ragusa) towns in this furthest corner of Sicily. If you share our enthusiasm for landscape, culture and cuisine then we’re confident you’ll feel the same about Modica and the southern provinces of Ragusa and Siracusa.
Please also read the history of the area.