Things to Do in Noto with Kids
They are not always interested in architecture and history unless we evoke their interest by showing more enthusiasm for those things we do.
Royal city gate
Cesare Brandi, an art historian, defined Noto as ‘The stone garden.’ About 50 churches, magnificent baroque buildings, residences of ancient aristocrats and gorgeous palaces are the flowers of this garden. The main street, Corso Vittorio Emanuele, begins at the monumental royal city gate and extends into three squares, each with a magnificent church. Above the entrance to the triumphal gate are animals that evoked the kids’ interest. There is the pelican, a symbol of self-defense, on both sides with a fortress symbol of strength, and there is also a Sicilian greyhound symbol of loyalty.
Noticing details on baroque buildings
Noto is a small town, so it is easy to walk around with children and see almost everything. The children paid special attention to the exciting details on the building facades and balconies. We were there to answer a million questions about lions, nymphs, sirens, centaurs, grotesque masks and other creatures that occupied their imagination. Next time, they should rent a tour guide. We are just ordinary parents after all.
Visiting Baroque churches
Noto has plenty of small streets and some are no longer than one meter. We noticed that some narrow streets end with churches which could have a symbolic meaning: All ways take us to God or God is the way.
We strolled along Corso Vittorio Emmanuele popping into souvenir shops, looking at other people’s plates of foods at restaurants and stopping for ice-cream flavored with Bronte pistachios and other things. Looking at churches probably wouldn’t be so fun for children if it weren’t followed by a lot of other activities, such as rabbit-jumping on the stairs.
Visiting famous film location
Noto is one of the most famous film locations in Sicily. One scene in Antonioni’s famous movie, ‘L’avventura’, takes place on the terrace of the San Carlo’s bell-tower in Noto. Gabriele Ferzetti and Monica Vitti. It was a fantastic place to see things; literally and emotionally.
Best beaches nearby Noto: Calamosche
We spent a sunny afternoon at Calamosche beach with the kids. It’s a bit of a walk, but it’s worth it. After you find a parking spot at Agriturismo Calamosche, you have to walk approximately 15 minutes through the nature reserve. It has beautiful crystal clear water, is clean and very calm as it’s just a little bay. You need to bring your own stuff because there are no beach facilities. It is the perfect place to turn children’s boredom into creative play. Our kids played for hours with wooden sticks, sand, and stones.
If you travel to Sicily, you might find some inspiration in our travel stories, because we try to see things from the new point of view.