An offer you can’t refuse:
The Mafia tour of Sicily
This is definitely not your usual holiday excursion. Using a local travel agency, you can dive into the world of the Sicilian Mafia. Organisers Easy Trapani offer two different trips dedicated to the feared secret society.
On the “Anti-Mafia Mafia Tour,” guests can visit some of the most interesting and famous places closely related to the history of the Cosa Nostra, the criminal organisation in western Sicily.
Depending on your choice, the tour lasts either a half day or the whole day. Through numerous anecdotes, guide Gianni Grillo describes the origins of the Mafia and its negative impact on the lives of the Italian Mediterranean island since 1860.
One stop on the trip is the town of Corleone, which gained worldwide fame through the novel The Godfather and the film adaptation starring Marlon Brando and Al Pacino in the lead roles.
The tour also takes you to the Museum of the Sicilian Mafia in Salemi and the CIDMA, the “Mafia and Antimafia Center” of Corleone. Guided tours through the picturesque old towns are also possible, but a traditional Sicilian lunch is a must.
The trips have provoked criticism from Mafia victims but an important aim of the tour, according to the organisers, is to clean up many misleading prejudices that have arisen from the famous film trilogy. They want to inform the people about the workings of the Mafia and make an important statement against the syndicate. “The Mafia kills. Silence too,” quotes Grillo.
The participants of the full day tour will dive deeper into the world of Cosa Nostra and learn the various facets of the clans. Grillo not only leads his guests to other places of historical interest, where important members of the organisation resided, but also explains the influence that the Sicilian Mafia still has on the inhabitants today.
The tours can be adapted to your personal needs. For example, you’ll be picked up at your accommodation in the province of Trapani and if you opt for the half-day Mafia tour, you can combine this with other excursions on the Italian island.
Need some background knowledge?
Cosa Nostra (Italian for “our thing”) is currently most strongly represented in western Sicily, specifically in the provinces of Palermo, Trapani and Agrigento. The basic organisation of the Cosa Nostra is the so-called family. This controls a particular territory, while the head is the capo or boss. Originally, the term Cosa Nostra originated in the US and then crossed the ocean to Italy.
Palermo has the greatest family history. In Sicily’s capital, families exist in almost every neighbourhood. To be a member of a family, candidates must pass a test. This is usually a serious criminal act, often a murder or robbery.