Towns & Architecture

Sciacca, what to see

Sciacca seems to be overwhelmed by Monte San Calogero, with its thermal waters and steam vapours which have made the town famous over the centuries..


overwhelmed from a distance

by Monte San Calogero,

with its thermal waters and steam vapours,

which have made the town famous over the centuries.

Its hot springs had been used since prehistoric times.

Sciacca used to be the outpost military spot for Selinunte

during the interminable warfare with the city of Agrigento,

the Romans called it Thermae Selinuntinae (Selinunte baths).

It developed rapidly under Arab rule (Sciacca derives from as-saqab)

and in the old Rabato you can still see traces of their culture

as well as in the Giudecca-Cadda quarters,

along with their blind alleys and maze of roofed courtyards.

Sciacca was further fortified by the Normans,

who quickly recognized its strategic importance in controlling

the trade routes.

However, much fought over the following years,

Sciacca was fortified again and again,

in particular against the assault of Charles I of Valois.

What to see in Sciacca

In the middle of Sciacca is Palazzo Steripinto,

built in Catalan-Gothic style in 1501 with a rusticated facade.

The church of Santa Margherita has a splendid Gothic portal;

note the bas-relief sculpture in the lunette representing

Santa Margherita,

as well as the Archangel Gabriel,

Our Lady of the Assumption and Saints Calogero and Maddalena.

Do not miss the cloister of the former Convent of San Francesco

and the unfinished Baroque facade of the Chiesa del Carmine,

with its 14th-century rose window.

In central Piazza Don Minzoni stands the Cathedral,

which was rbuilt in 1656 and dedicated to Santa Maria Maddalena

but retains three Norman apses.


the main attractions in Sciacca are Monte San Calogero

and its thermal pools.

From the large square at the summit,

with the sanctuary dedicated to the Evangelist San Calogero,

who in the 5th-century eliminated pagan rites in the mountain caves,

the panorama is breathtaking.

The summit its almost1,313 ft high,

and on a clear day there is a commanding view from

Capo Bianco to Capo Lilibeo,

with the limestoneridge of Caltabellotta in the background

and Pantelleria island before you.

The older spas are on the slopes of the mountain,

while new ones have been built closer to the seaside.

Sciacca is also known for its ceramics,

which were mentioned in ancient times

by Diodorus Siculus.

Local production thrived during the period of Arab rule,

and another golden age came in the 16th-century.


local craftsmen are trying to maintain this tradition.