There’so much history, beauty and culture in Castelvetrano, a small town near Trapani
To fully appreciate the uniqueness of this town of over 30,000 inhabitants, let’s enter the old town which still retains a certain aristocratic character due to its early history, related to the Tagliavia family, the ancient lords of the city; we can feelan atmosphere of never fallen nobility.
Let’s go straight to the Church of San Domenico, built in 1470 by the Tagliavias and completed by Don Carlo d’Aragona. A recent restoration has made it available to visitors so let the rich and harmonious decoration of its interior and the beautiful stucco Antonio Ferrara dazzle us. On entering the church we immediately understand why it is deemed the Sistine Chapel of Sicily.
Our walk continues with a visit to the main church, we recognize it for its beautiful sixteenth-century rose window. Inside, it has a wooden panel depicting the Madonna della Misericordia (Virgin of Mercy) and its central nave it is covered with paintings of effigies and musical instruments.
A few steps from the church the beautiful fountain of the Nymph in Piazza Umberto I, would not remain unnoticed: a magnificent 10 meters high monument in pure Sicilian Baroque style. It consists of four rows of tanks: on the last one, at the top, there is a nymph holding up a bottle from which the water flows.
In the city it is known as “Ninfuzza di li cannola” and it is not only important for artistic reasons: when it was built it was a work of cutting-edge technology.
We leave the city, and we move towards the west until we reach the Byzantine Cuba of the Holy Trinity of Delia, a Byzantine-Norman masterpiece. The church is still well preserved, protected from the bad weather and from the ravages of time.
Like all the Byzantine cubes, the church is characterized by three external apses while, in the opposite side of the building, there are three doors: the side doors were reserved to men, the central one was for women who could only take part to the celebrations on the sidelines.
Before leaving Castelvetrano, let’s taste the famous black bread made from Tumminia, a durum wheat flour, one of the oldest Sicilian grains.