Nature reserve of the mouth of the river Platani and Eraclea Minoa
Eraclea Minoa, a dive into the culture of the island, a journey to discover the nature that surrounds itThe Archaeological Site of Eraclea Minoa is set within the idyllic promontory of Capo Bianco, at the foot of the mouth of river Platani. The remains of the Greek city of Eraclea Minoa occupy a magnificent spot along the ridge of a secluded hill overlooking the sea. At the foot of the hill, the coast opens up to the very long white beach of Capo Bianco which is surrounded by a beautiful pine forest. Before reaching the excavation site, you will notice a number of white wind-shaped rock “dunes” on your right that protect these crystal clear waters. Its double name (Eraclea Minoa) leads back to very ancient Sicily and the rites of passages of Heracles and of the Cretan king Minos, who according to legend would have pursued Dedalus all the way to Sicily to punish him for having helped Ariadne and Theseus to find a way out of the labyrinth. Apart from its mythical origins, Eraclea Minoa (the remains of which are still visible) was founded by Greek colonists coming from Selinunte in the sixth century BC. It was then under Roman control in the third century BC, and becoming involved in a series of wars, it was gradually abandoned to itself. In the first century AC the city had no inhabitants left. The archaeological excavations were initiated systematically from the 1950s. They unearthed numerous remains of cob houses, some of which still display small sections of mosaics. Wide sections of the ancient defensive wall structure are still standing, together with its towers, a few entrance gates to the city and a Greek theatre. In order to protect it from atmospheric erosion the theatre has been entirely covered today, but is still the main site of evocative summer performances with the cliffs of Capo Bianco and its splendid beaches below in the background. For its historical significance, a visit to the archaeological area of Eraclea Minoa would be perfectly combined with a visit to Agrigento.
- Eraclea Minoa long beach, fine golden sand, partly free and partly lidos, food and beverages served. The beautiful pine forest behind the beach is the preferred destination for campers
- Capo Bianco wild beach, half-moon shape, fine golden sand, beautiful pine forest behind beach, reachable only on foot in 15 minutes
- Nature Reserve of the mouth of the River Platani wild beach inside the nature reserve, reachable on foot in 20 minutes (3 km), pine forest with lido behind the beach
- Bovo Marina wid beach, fine golden sand, pine forest with bar and a lido behind the beach, large and handy car park, beach not too crowded