The enchanting town of Mazara del Vallo makes an excellent base for a self-catered holiday in Sicily as well as a wonderful day out. This renowned agricultural centre and fishing port is situated on the south-west coast of Sicily, flanked by the banks of the MazaraRiver, and plays host to one of the largest fishing fleets in Italy.
The beautiful architecture and atmospheric streets that wind through the heart of Mazara del Vallo showcase the town's rich historical heritage. Although it was founded by the Phoenicians in the 9th century, it wasn't until Sicily came under Arabian rule that Mazara del Vallo was brought to dazzling success, becoming a powerful Saracen city, second only to Palermo in importance. Even the exotic name is an homage to the Arabic influence which infuses the magical streets of the Casbah and the fusion cuisine of the town to this day.
As well as exploring the labyrinthine streets of the Arabic quarter and discovering the Norman and Baroque buildings that wait around every turn, Mazara del Vallo holidays also offer a coastline ribboned with soft, sandy beaches and all manner of water-sports out in the sparkling Mediterranean Sea. Basing your holiday in this town additionally offers access to all the treasures of Western Sicily from the beautiful Baroque town of Marsala to the ancient ruins of Selinunte.
Apartments and villas in Mazara del Vallo will allow you to absorb the rich culture and ancient history of the region, taste delicious cuisine, shop the markets and laze on soft, sandy beaches. Choosing self-catered accommodation is a popular option for many visitors to experience life as a local in Sicily.
Our accommodation at Sicily4U has been hand-picked by our expert team and each has unique features that could be exactly what you are looking for. Our Villa Casa Alba, perched on the edge of Mazara del Vallo, is not only close to a sandy beach but to beautiful landscapes with ample opportunities for hiking. Additionally, the outside furniture, BBQ and outside shower mean you can make the most of Sicily's sunny days and balmy nights.
Whether you choose to base yourself in the heart of Mazara del Vallo, right in the centre of the action, or prefer to enjoy more space in your own private villa, you can relax and enjoy all the comforts of home. Further services can often be arranged, such as housekeeping or shopping services – contact us for help in finding your dream Mazara del Vallo accommodation.
As a holiday destination, Mazara del Vallo certainly ticks a wide variety of boxes. The many ethnicities that call this town home have left their mark on the historical architecture as well as the delectable local cuisine. History buffs will further enjoy browsing the famous Museo della Satira Danzante, with its bronze sculpture of a cavorting satyr, enraptured with impish delight.
The mighty Cathedral del San Salvatore and beautiful churches like the magnificent Chiesa di San Francesco, filled with intricate carvings and an incredible ceiling fresco, will appeal to culture vultures, as will the atmospheric ruins of King Roger's Norman castle, particularly when lit up at night.
However, it's the hustle of the fishing port as the daily catch comes in and the sparkling sea views which capture the essence of day-to-day Mediterranean life.
Mazara del Vallo's position as one of the key fishing hubs of Sicily indicates visitors can expect to enjoy an array of delicious fresh off the boat fish and seafood in local restaurants. This being Italy, you can find sumptuous pasta dishes, creamy cheeses and seasonal produce in all colours of the rainbow from plump, cherry red tomatoes to deep purple aubergines and vivid citrus fruits.
Be sure to taste the North African influence in the cous cous dishes of the town and those with a sweet tooth should check out the decadent gelato and smooth granitas that come in all manner of flavours, including almond, coffee and lemon. Don't forget to try out the world famous wines of Western Sicily too.
Renting a Mazara de Vallo villa or apartment provides access to beaches that showcase the very best of
the Mediterranean. The main town beach is very popular amongst holiday-makers and is known as Tonnarella. However, eight kilometres of golden sands stretch out around this region, so if you fancy wandering a little further afield, you'll be spoiled for choice.
Capo Feto is a protected area with super-soft sand – it can be a tricky to find so is a favourite among naturists. Scala dei Turchi, 10 kilometres away, is an ancient pirate cove with a series of tiny beaches along its craggy coastline that are renowned for their snorkelling and diving opportunities; and La Quarara boasts a rugged landscape with excellent swimming straight from the rocks.
Take a step into a magical kingdom and wander the ancient Arabic quarter known as La Casbah. The winding, narrow alleys are part of the traditional town that was once hidden between the thick city walls. The historical hammam (public baths) can be seen in these ancient streets and the casbah is just the place to sample authentic North African cuisine at small, hole-in-the-wall eateries.
The western coast of Sicily offers an assortment of treasure to cater to a range of tastes. The Baroque town of Marsala, with its picturesque houses lined up along the hills, makes a postcard-worthy day out
, whilst the fascinating archaeological sites of Segesta, Selinunte and Agrigento are a must. Nature lovers will find the tranquil Zingaro Reserve within easy reach and for those that prefer the hustle of humanity, lively Trapani is just a one hour drive up the coast.
See our location guide for more information about other popular destinations in Sicily.