It is easy to find the warm smiles of the locals as you walk through Geraci Siculo’s alleyways, which seem to be from a bygone age.
This medieval hamlet is located in the heart of the MadonieMountains. It will charm you with its sweet silences and stunning views. The citadel, which is fortified, sits on top of a hill that looks like the back of an horse. Geraci Siculo ( Palermo) is derived from the Greek word Jerax (vulture), which was used to describe the fortress that housed these predatory birds during the Greek colonization in the 8th Century BC.
It was an important county in medieval times and one of the favourite residences for the Ventimiglia family. This famous family has left many artistic and historical monuments. From outside, the first is the “Bevaio della SS.” Trinita was a watering spot with two stone fountains and four mouths that poured water into sandstone cups. The Castle is also located on a steep hill. Although the castle is now a ruin in Byzantine style, it used to be a military fortress. A small church to St. Anna is located near the castle. It was built as the Palatine Chapel for the Ventimiglia families. Legend has it that the chapel contained a skull belonging to the saint, which was then moved to Castelbuono.
The Main Church is located among the narrow streets. It is dedicated to Santa Maria Maggiore’s worship and the kingdom of antithesis. Here, the Romanesque exterior contrasts with the interior, which is rich in marble elements such as the Gagini baptismal font and the massive wooden choir, both from 1650. You can also descend to the crypt of this church, which preserves the treasures of Geraci: gold- and silver liturgical items and tools, and embroidered vestments. Antonello Gagini, the artist, is the protagonist of the artistic legacy preserved in many churches in Geraci. He created the marble altarpiece on the altar of St. Bartholomeo as well as the triptych in monochrome marble in Santa Maria La Porta .
We leave the village and travel through a forest in the land of Vicaretto to reach our final stop, the Church of Santa Maria della Cava. This small chapel was annexed in the Norman period to a Basilian monastery. The interior reflects Byzantine architecture, while the exterior has a Romanesque façade with an embossed roseette and arched doorway.
The “Ventimiglia’s leap” is the right choice if you feel suspended in the air. It is a steel and glass balcony that was built in the exact spot where Francesco I Ventimiglia (count of Geraci), fled from the royal troops under Pietro II of Aragon in 1337. He threw himself and his horse into the deep cliff below.
The village’s signature dish is the homemade.
Fresh pasta that looks like noodles and served with mutton sauce. Let’s also consider the
Tagghiarini cu sucu de crastagneddu
Fresh homemade tagliatelle served with tomato sauce, mutton.
Do not forget to mention the
pasta ca fasola
Pasta with fresh local beans. The second most popular dish is the
Cuosti di crastagneddi
sasizzunedda ca addauro
Grilled minced meat sausages wrapped in laurel leaves.
pittrina ca fasola
Mutton sauce with local green beans. You can also taste these dairy products
tuma frisca cu zuccaru
Or, fresh cheese with sugar
With anchovies and – for the sweet end – the nice morsels known
Made with honey and almonds