Recently returned from Sicily after a great 2 week family holiday. We were first timers and were a bit nervous about what to expect so I thiought it might be useful to give some feedback. Apologies if this is the wrong place. Just hope it may be of some use.
We flew into Trapani, arriving late, picked up a hire car and drove all the way across the island to San Lorenzo (about 20 mins south of Noto on the coast). Driving time 4.30 and roads were good at that time of night. San Lorenzo was a great beach with 2 great coffee / pastry / gelato cafes. Sea was remarkably warm and pleasant. Visits to Noto and Syracuse were interesting days out, but primarily we went for beach which was great (not Carribean or Australia standards but still aout a 8/10).
Second week we drove across to Alcamo Marina near Castlemarre del Golfo (apologies if spelt wrong). View and vista were amazing - it's a long sandy beach surrounded by mountains. Beach was lovely, but not pristine - a little bit of occasional rubbish. Also the sea was still warm but not as clear as san Lorenzo (little murky with sea weed). There was a great sandbank that was excellent for the kids. Not alot in Alcamo Marina itself: a mini-mart and an excellent coffee/pastry/gelato shop. All the facilities were further along in Castlemarre. Of note, we had wanted to stay in san Vito le Capo but could not find anything on the beach in out price range. Turns out this was a blessing as we visited SV le Capo and I have never seen such a crowded beach and sea. Yes it was lovely, but too crowded to be enjoyable. I would not recommend the beach in high season unless you are OK with dense crowds.
Some summary points that concerned us before we went:
Weather: (Late July / Early Aug) Was great, but too hot to do much over the lunchtime period (siesta is there for a reason!). Sea was amazingly warm - great for kids.
Food. Amazing coffee and pastries for breakfast (though after 2 weeks I still wasn't sure how to order the coffee I wanted as no-one spoke much / any English. Lots of nice lunchtime choices mainly fish / pasta based. No pizza until evenings. Best find of the holiday was Al Burgo in Castlemarre del Golfo - amazing food at amazing value.
Driving. Aggresive and little consideration given by the locals but it was fine. Roads were good, it's the drivers that are the issue!
Language: Wife spoke a little Italian and got on OK. I spoke none and got by, but with no finesse! (At the risk of offending locals we found Sardinia to be friendlier and more accommodating to tourists).
Beach holiday. A definite yes from us! Best overall package I have seen within 2-3 hours of UK. I think we will return.
Hope this of some use,