Are you planning to visit Sicily this summer 2019? Follow our guide to go to Sicily from Nice by ferry!
Sicily, the largest island in Italy and the Mediterranean Sea, is the largest region in Italy and one of the main tourist destinations in Europe. If you are planning to travel to Sicily by ferry from Nice in summer, you should know that the island is very popular, especially along the coast, where summer visitors gather for the beauty of its beaches and its historic towns and villages.
Settled since the second millennium BC, Sicily has seen many civilizations succeed one another throughout its history, including the Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Byzantines and Arabs, Normans, Spaniards before being annexed to the Italian state at the end of the 19th century.
The island is home to two of Italy’s ten largest cities – Catania and Palermo – and is home to just over 5 million people. Between Mount Etna, the ruins of Taormina and Agrigento, the superb Syracuse and the island of Ortygia, the peninsula of San Vito lo Cap, the Aegadian and Aeolian Islands, Marsala or the Madonies, the village of Cefalù or the sublime beaches of the coast, you will not lack things to see and do in Sicily.
The good news is that you can now reach Sicily from France by ferry. Here is our mini-guide to book your ferry ticket.
Ferry companies connecting Sicily to Nice
Until spring 2019, it was necessary to go to the cities of Cagliari (Sardinia), Genoa, Naples, Salerno or Civitavecchia to go to Sicily by ferry. Since April 21, 2019, a company has opened routes to reach the island from the port of Nice: Corsica Ferries. With its expansion into the Mediterranean Sea, the shipping giant has woven a new route, like the new silk thread of a spider’s web: the Nice-Trapani line.
Ships make three irregular rotations per week, including two from Toulon and one from Nice. Corsica Ferries should therefore satisfy road-trip enthusiasts since the significant advantage of the ferry is that it parks its car in the hold so that you can drive once at your destination with your own vehicle (beware of Sicilian driving , very sporty). Once disembarked at the port of Trapani, you will be a 1h30 drive away from Palermo, the island’s capital, near the superb Aegadian Islands – Favignana, Marettimo, Levanzo -, the historic city of Marsala and the Valley of the Temples of Agrigento.
If the direct journey is not possible from Nice (incompatibility of schedules for example), it is always possible to leave from Toulon, or to make a stopover in Sardinia. Be aware that on the official website of Corsica Ferries, there are few departures from the port of Nice. At the time of writing, there are only two direct connections on the 8th and 10th of June 2019 and one departure on the 13th and 26th of August for the entire summer of 2019, the rest of the direct crossings being planned from Toulon.
Plan a ferry trip in Sicily with Direct Ferries
Planning a ferry trip from Nice to Sicily with Direct Ferries is very simple. It is a crossings comparator to visit the Mediterranean islands. It is a bit like the Skyscanner of maritime transport. To obtain a fare on the Direct Ferries website, you must mention your travel dates, your desired departure time, the number of passengers and animals and your means of transport (make, model). The site compares the prices and times of the available crossings according to your information integrated in the search engine.
The crossing from Nice to Trapani takes 18h15, and the ships leave the port in the evening, to anchor in the port of Trapani in the early afternoon the next day. If the schedules and dates do not suit you, Grandi Navi Veloci (GNV) operates a service to Trapani from Genoa. As an indication, for a reservation on the date of writing this article (May 23, 2019), a trip from Nice-Trapani on June 8 and back on June 19 costs 101 €.
How to book your ferry trip to Sicily from Nice?
As with air transport, ticket prices can fluctuate – shipping companies also overbook – so it is better not to wait too long when you see an attractive fare to travel to Sicily from Nice by ferry. As soon as you have registered your preferences on the site (dates, times, vehicle type and make), you will be taken to the travel options selection page.
You can book a seat, a 4-berth cabin with private bathroom, a meal (self-service) and a continental breakfast as well as a priority boarding and disembarkation. These options will undoubtedly adjust your price upwards, but it is up to you to decide on the level of comfort you wish to have during the 18:15 travel time: it would be a pity to arrive at the port of Trapani completely exhausted to have dozed off on the bridge for budgetary reasons…
The site proposes to subscribe to a cancellation insurance free of charge for an amount of 31.35 €. It’s really up to you to see if that’s worth it in your eyes….
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