One or two days at Sclafani Bagni
There is a village at the foot of Madonie Park, its name is Sclafani Bagni. It is in the quiet Sicilian countryside, in the province of Palermo. This place hides some interesting secrets: take a couple of days to discover them.
We recommend leaving early in the morning to reach Sclafani Bagni. As soon as you arrive, you can stroll through the village alleys, where you can discover many places of interest. Don’t miss to visit he ruins of Castello Grande, those of Castelluccio (on the opposite side), the Chiesa Madre (Main Church), but also the Chiesa di San Filippo and the Chiesa di San Giacomo. To spice up the atmosphere a little bit more, you should know that the origins of the San Giacomo Church are almost unknown.
Inside the Mother Church, there is a stunning 17th-century organ by Antonino La Valle. But the main attraction is a Greek sarcophagus that seems to date back to the 4th century B.C. Apparently, it was brought to Sclafani after the destruction of Imera.
The sarcophagus depicts a bacchanal with Bacchae armed with tyres, drunken fauns, altars and fires of sacrifices.
After the long morning walk, it’s time to relax and discover the first secret of the town: a natural spring of water that flows at a temperature of 37 °C. The spring is surrounded by unspoilt nature and completely accessible to the public. Sclafani was known in the past for an important spa, active since 1748, then closed and reopened several times until the 20th century, and then closed for good in the 1990s. The old baths are still there, a few hundred metres from the spring and preserve all their charm.
While you relax in the hot thermal waters, you can enjoy a breathtaking view: to the north, you can see the valley that leads down to the Imera River; to the south it’s possible to admire the rocky cliff on which the village of Sclafani Bagni stands.
If you feel like staying one more day in this corner of paradise, you can discover another secret jewel of the area: the small natural lake of Bomes, a few kilometres from Sclafani Bagni. You will be surrounded by woods of holm oaks, cork oaks and typical Mediterranean plants. The lake is inside the Bosco di Favara and Bosco di Ganza natural reserves, perfect for taking long walks in the middle of nature.