Splendors of Sicily – Temples of Selinunte and Agrigento

We make a quick swing by the airport on our way out of Palermo this morning to collect baggage misplaced by airlines. What was lost has now been found! Our first stop today is the ancient Greek city of Selinunte on the South-Western Coast of Sicily. You arrive at the site, and have no idea what is there until you pass through a cut in a hill, turn a corner, and then have your breath taken away by the sight of the reconstructed Temple of Hera, sitting on this sunny April day in a field of wildflowers.

Our first glimpse of the Temple of Hera at Selinunte

The many temples at the site were utterly destroyed by a massive earthquake, but we can appreciate their original appearance now thanks to this one having been painstakingly put back together in the 1950’s.

Our group at the Temple of Hera in Selinunte
Wood is our sacrificial lamb on the altar at the Temple of Hera at Selinunte

The largest temple at Selinunte was three times the size of the Temple of Hera, and it is now merely a rubble of toppled columns wherein mysterious creatures lurk.

Ruins of the largest temple at Selinunte. A single column was put back together.
A tour member clambering among the ruins
Temple of Hera as seen from the ruins nearby
Ancient creatures still live among the ruins. This one appears to be predatory.
The Acropolis of Selinunte in the distance

We have a delightful lunch at the seashore and then continue to Agrigento to see the Valle dei Templi (Valley of the Temples). This is actually a misnomer as the site is located on a ridge outside the town of Agrigento, but one feels as though you are walking through a valley with the town towering overhead on one side (the sea on the other).

Dan at the Temple of Juno at the top of the Valley of the Temples
The Temple of Concordia as seen from the Temple of Juno
Looking back to the Temple of Juno on the way to the Temple of Concordia

The Temple of Concordia is ranked among the best examples of the edifices of Greek civilization today because it is so well preserved.

Statue of Icarus in the courtyard of the Temple of Concordia
Concordia means “harmony” – which is an apt description of our wonderful group of gentlemen
Special breed of goat peculiar to this locality. What unusual horns you have (said one horny old goat to another)!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *