Huddled on a paddle-shaped hill-top, the medieval town of Ragusa Ibla is a world apart from its much larger and younger neighbour Ragusa Superiore. The most dramatic way to arrive is to walk down from Superiore via the steep flights of steps that thread their way over and under the town's roads. Your first view of Ibla itself might stop you in your tracks - the town's weather-worn rooftops tumble down the hill towards the eye catching church and neighbouring palazzos that mark the gateway to the old city. On your way down, you'll pass strikingly ornate Baroque balconies, railings, bell towers and archways, adorned with stone cherubs and swirling filigree. At the bottom of the hill, you are confronted with the handsome eighteenth century facade of the Church of the Holy Souls in Purgatory. From here you can stroll past a beautiful golden palazzo and up through the eerily quiet streets paved with fine flagstones. The crumbling old terraces are punctuated with grand dwellings with cast iron balconies and lavishly-carved window surrounds. Many are for sale, others are being renovated.
Ragusa Ibla's serene Cathedral of San Giorgio
Ragusa Ibla's fine Piazza Duomo