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The Sicilian Ragusa consists of two parts: Ragusa Ibla (the Old Town) and Ragussa Superior (the New Town). The separation came into being following a severe earthquake in 1963. The city's notables decided to rebuild the old part, while the laborers built a new city. Ragusa Ibla is an attractive town with small alleys, steep stairs and old churches, including the Duomo di San Giorgio. Eighteen buildings in the old Ragusa are listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The city (both the old and the new part) has approximately 75,000 inhabitants.
Ragusa is located in the southeast of the Italian island of Sicily. The city is built on a wide hill between two valleys, the Cava San Leonardo and the Cava Santa Domenica. The harbor, Marina di Ragusa, lies on the Mediterranean Sea about 25 kilometers southwest of Ragusa. Here you'll find beautiful beaches and the town has an exuberant nightlife. You can reach this seaside resort by rental car from Ragusa via the SP25.
There's some light industry near Ragusa, but the province is mainly known for its greenhouse farming. There are also olive orchards and cattle breeding for dairy and meat production. There are still some fishing villages on the coast, but the main source of income is tourism.
There's something odd about the airport: a brand-new airport was built (Ragusa/Comiso Airport) only 18 kilometers from the center, but it's still not being used. Rumors say that Catania Airport is preventing the opening, as it would mean competition. For now Catania-Fontanarossa Airport is therefore the nearest airport. There are different routes to that airport, but by rental car it's best to take the SS115 south and then the A18 to the airport.
Ragusa has good public transport: fifteen bus lines maintain the connections between the old and the new part of town. Most buses from Azienda Siciliana Trasporti (AST) run in a circle. You buy tickets at newspaper of tobacco kiosks. There are also buses to other places in the vicinity, including Marina di Ragusa.
Ragusa Ibli (the old part of town) consists of narrow alleys, winding streets and steep stairs, where you can't drive with your rental car. You best leave your car in Ragusa Superior (more than sufficient parking facilities) and walk to the old Ragusa via the stairs from the Via Roma. You can also drive in your rental car to Ibli; outside the center there's a parking lot, but it's often full in summer months.
The old part of Ragusa has a large choice of accommodations, mainly midrange hotels and bed & breakfasts. Holiday resorts and tourist hotels can be found on the coast, not only in Marina di Ragusa, but also in other seaside resorts on the Mediterranean. If you're looking for peace and quiet, there are several agritourism ('vacationing at farmhouses') options in the city's vicinity. You'll also find hotels and guesthouses in the smaller towns of Comiso (west of Ragusa) and Modica (south of town).
For more information about Ragusa, we recommend Google and the following sources: