As an American who grew up at the Jersey Shore where the ocean waters are brown and opaque, I learned to appreciate the beauty and purity of crystal clear seas.  Italy is filled with beaches similar to the Jersey Shore, but like most countries, it also has its gems.  Each summer my family and I visit different beaches in Italy, with the goal of visiting some of the most beautiful beaches Italy has to offer.  I recall doing Google searches years ago, only to find various blog articles claiming that the most beautiful Italian beaches are in either Sicily or Sardinia.  Then, after interviewing many Italians over the years, I’d say half believe the most beautiful beaches are in Sicily, while the other half are in Sardinia.  We started visiting both Sicily and Sardinia four years ago, and based upon my research and personal experience, I am comfortable stating with confidence that the best beaches in Italy are indeed in Sicily and Sardinia.  Many of our family Italian beach vlogs can be viewed on our family YouTube channel in the travel section.
Arriving at Agua Beach, July 2023
Last summer (2023) we visited the Sicilian province of Siracusa, which is located in the Southeast corner of Sicily.  We had an amazing experience.  We stayed at a beautiful AIRBNB in a small town outside of the city of Siracusa called Fontane Bianche.  Fontane Bianche is a popular beach town centrally located to many of the top beaches of Siracusa.  The town has a little coffee shop and a supermarket typical to small Italian villages.  There is also a popular pizzeria in town for casual dinners after a long day in the sun.

Over all, we visited several beaches in the province of Siracusa which I will share below.  But first, it is important to understand how most beaches work in Italy.  Let’s say, for example, we have a half a mile of beach front property in the United States, with numerous hotels along the strip adjacent to one another.  One hotel will have its own chairs, umbrellas, towels, restaurants, bathrooms, entertainment, etc., that are available to paying guests.  Next to the hotel is another hotel that has different color chairs, umbrellas, towels, restaurant menu, entertainment, etc.  Once again, that beach is available to that hotel’s paying guests, but maybe for a different price.  And as we go down the strip, we see numerous other hotels and beaches with different prices, policies and amenities.  This is the way the beaches are in most of Italy, minus the hotel affiliation.    Many beaches all around Italy have their own beach club (not necessarily a hotel), which supplies chairs, umbrellas, food, entertainment, etc., for a price (I’ve seen as low as 10 Euros, or as high as 350 Euros in places like Forte dei Marmi).  These are called “Bagni”.  Unlike many places in the United States, however, public beaches in Italy are not as common.  In Italy, it’s typically a pay to play beach environment.

Lido Fontane Bianche (Via Mazzarò, 1, 96100 Fontane Bianche, Italy)
Lido Fontane Bianche is a beach on the Ionian Sea.  Waters are crystal clear, and the beaches are busy and sandy – perfect for kids where they can play in the soft sand, and meet a lot of other children.  While at Lido Fontane Bianche, I rented a paddle boat and we floated out to a rocky cliff where we jumped off into the water.  The restaurant food was good, and the WiFi was strong (WiFi is important to me because I am always working from my laptop).  While I recall there being many feet of shallow ocean, I don’t recall there being too much space between the water and where the lounge chairs are placed, therefore limiting the play area for the kids.
Sunset Beach (SP59, 10, 96017, Lido di Noto, Italy)
Sunset Beach was also very nice.  Crystal clear waters, soft sand, busy with kids playing games, great restaurant, and a bit more spacious than Lido Fontane Bianche (where the lounge chairs were closer together).  I recall my children meeting and playing with other kids who happened to be visiting from the United States, and I recall there being ample space for the kids to play, build sand castles, kick a soccer ball around, etc.
Agua Beach Resort (Contrada Reitani, 96017 Noto SR, Italy)
This beach was our absolute favorite for several reasons.  First, the beach was the most spacious for the kids to play.  Second, the water was the most clear we have seen in Sicily thus far.  Third, the beach offered boating activities, such as paddle boats, jet skis, floats, etc., which we took advantage of.  Fourth, the restaurant food was the most delicious.  Fifth, the hospitality and friendliness of the staff was the best.  Sixth, the entertainment was the best, as after sundown, the beach turns into a beach club with a live DJ.  Seventh, we saw adjacent to Agua Beach, many beach properties, such as condos and/or homes, which would be great to rent one day and stay for a longer period.  We liked this beach so much, that we returned to it a second time during our 1-week visit to Siracusa.  We also filmed a video at this beach, which you can see above.

When visiting Sicily, most tourists and/or Italian Enthusiasts have a limited amount of time, which is why it is super important to make well informed decisions.  Making the wrong decision can potentially ruin a vacation.

For those of you who are considering Siracusa for your next Italian family beach vacation, remember that in addition to the top beaches, Siracusa has so much more to offer, including its ancient history (spanning over 2,700 years), charming historic towns, such as Ortigia, top culinary delights, cultural festivals and events, economic savings (you will generally spend less in Sicily than in the north), and most of all, warm hospitality from the locals.


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