Flying onto the island is by far the easiest way to get to Sicily given that there is no bridge or direct road with the mainland. You can take a vehicle to the island but you have to use the train which is loaded onto a ferry which goes from Messina (Sicily side) to Villa San Giovanni in Reggio Calabria (Italian mainland). For flying onto the island, the following airports are the main options.
For flights to the East coast of Sicily, for access to locations such as Taormina, the Etna, Syracusa, Messina and Catania, Catania International airport is the main access point. Served by airlines such as Alitalia and British Airways this is also often one of the cheapest routes onto the islands. In recent years, easyjet have also started to fly into Catania airport. More about Catania International airport.
One of the smallest airports on the island but still a valid option and very useful if you are planning a holiday or vacation close to the Trapani region. Airlines flying into Trapani include Ryanair, an airport which orginally was a miltary airport. Read about Trapani airport.
For flights to the West coast if Sicily, Palermo provides the best option. A number of airlines fly into Palermo-Puntaraisi Falcone e Borsellino airport including Alitia and a few budget airlines. Learn more about Palermo airport and flights.
There are literally dozens of airlines who now fly into the Sicilian airports although the main ones are Alitalia, Ryanair and Meridiana. You can find a more extensive list of flights from our flights page.
There are many options also to travel onto the island by sea. There are a number of ferry companies who provide sea transport to the island of Sicily including via the Aeolian Islands, Malta, the Italian mainland and also from northern Africa. You can find more information on ferry trips to Sicily on out by sea page.
You can travel to Sicily from anywhere in Italy including from cities such as Rome, Milan and Venice by train and you can also travel across Sicily itself between cities such as Catania, Palermo and Taormina with this form of transport. The main issue comes with access between mainland Italy locations and travel by train to locations on the islands of Sicily. Until a bridge is built connecting the island and the Italian mainland, the journey by train takes an extra hour that what it otherwise would, with the train carriages needing to move across via the ferry across the Messina Strait.
In the future there is the possibility of a bridge and chances are that a road bridge would be copied with a train or rail bridge alongside it. Until then, travelling from a city such as Rome or Milan by train to Palermo as an example, can take 12 – 14 hours and can be a tiring journey. If you are travelling from a Southern part of mainland Italy then train and rail transport is certainly a consideration. If you do travel across on the ferry on the train, it is quite an experience as you literally stay on the train as it is set onto ferry and then comes off the other side. If traveling from the North of Italy then your best bet can be an overnight train and a train which offers a bunk bed style service. Booking trains and checking schedules online: http://www.trenitalia.com