(Aci Castello, Catania, SICILY)
Sicily (Italian and Sicilian: Sicilia) is an autonomous region of Italy. Of all the regions of Italy, Sicily covers the largest land area at 25,708 km² and currently has just over five million inhabitants. It is also the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. In addition, several much smaller islands surrounding it are also considered to be part of Sicily. Along with Sardinia, the island is officially classified as a region of Insular Italy.
Throughout much of its history, Sicily has been considered a crucial strategic location due in large part to its importance for Mediterranean trade routes. The area was highly regarded as part of Magna Graecia, with Cicero describing Siracusa as the greatest and most beautiful city of all Ancient Greece.
Although today Sicily is a region of Italy, the island was once a city-state in its own right, and as the Kingdom of Sicily ruled from Palermo over southern Italy, Sicily, and Malta. It later became a part of the Two Sicilies under the Bourbons, a kingdom governed from Naples that comprised both the island itself and most of Southern Italy. The Italian unification of 1860 led to the dissolution of this kingdom, and Sicily became an autonomous part of the Kingdom of Italy.
Sicily is considered to be highly rich in its own unique culture, especially with regard to the arts, cuisine, architecture and language. The Sicilian economy is largely based on agriculture (mainly orange and lemon orchards); this same rural countryside has attracted significant tourism in the modern age as its natural beauty is highly regarded. Sicily also holds importance for archeological and ancient sites such as the Necropolis of Pantalica and the Valley of the Temples.
more on: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicily