Scala dei Turchi, Sicily


Just 15 minutes from the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento, the brilliant white and weather-formed Scala dei Turchi juts into the sea off Sicily’s southern coast. The rock is a perfect diving board for beach-goers and irresistible for photographers. Accessible after a short walk along the beach (video), it’s also an easy climb (video): flip flops and a bathing suit will do just fine.




The name translates as Turkish Steps, and indeed there is a striking resemblance to Pamukkale, Turkey. However the explanation on this website (in Italian) on the history of the name is that the Scala dei Turchi was the place Arab pirates, locally referred to as “turks”, anchored their boats out of the wind while they pillaged the surrounding area.


Scala dei Turchi, Sicily, Italy

“Scala dei Turchi” by Radek Kucharski via Flickr, licensed under CC BY 2.0



Getting There

The Scala dei Turchi beach is in Realmonte, just an hour fromPalermo,an hour from Piazza Armerina and 15 minutes from the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento. More specifically, it’s at 37°17’31″N 13°28’13″E




Top photo by Myriapod; middle photo by Giuseppe Finocchiaro; bottom photo by Albyf1948;   

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