Selinunte archaeological park and beaches
A lot of amenities can be found in the ancient Selinunte, the little seafaring village that played a main role in the history of Sicily: from the greatest archaeological park in the world (even bigger than the one in Athens) to the picturesque little port where everyday a traditional fish auction takes place, as well as the beautiful beaches rising under the acropolis within the Belice nature reserve.
Selinunte was one of the most important Greek colonies in the whole island; its name comes from Sèlinon, the Greek name for wild parsley that grows in the area and can also be found on the first coins of the city, that grew prosperous and flourishing for almost 200 years. Unfortunately, the continuous wars against Segesta eventually ended with the Carthaginians destroying Selinunte in 409 b.C.; the city was rebuilt and then permanently destroyed by the Romans 200 years later.
Three areas can be found on the Selinunte archaeological park, surrounded by the typical Mediterranean scrub: the first one is located on the eastern hill, the second on the western hill, and the Acropolis in the northern area. The most remarkable and famous temple ruins are those located on the hill to the east: the most northerly one was even longer than the Temple of Olympian Zeus in Agrigento, while the Temple of Hera (the southernmost one) was built in the 5th century b.C. and is the first building you will see as you approach the park.
Your tour of this impressive archaeological site will let you discover a wide number of ruins of temples, houses, walls, public and religious buildings and a necropolis as well. A lot of interesting pieces of works and manufactured products, especially related to figurative arts, have been found among these ruins and are now preserved inside the Archaeological Museum in Palermo as well as in the nearby city of Castelvetrano.
And after a long walk through the whole Selinunte archaeological park you may want to take some rest: Marinella di Selinunte and Triscina di Selinunte, two quiet and tiny seafaring villages, are just a bunch of kilometers far with their sandy beaches and delicious fresh fish for lunch or dinner!