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We have a villa in Sicily on the foothills of Mount Etna, just outside a small town, and divide our time between UK and Sicily and are a bilingual household.
Our house is spacious, with beautiful views of Mount Etna, the sea, and Taormina in the distance. Etna is ideal for nature lovers (spectacular landscape, donkey and horse riding, hiking, quad biking), and there are several pretty towns in Eastern Sicily, vineyards, archeaological sites as well as beaches. We've welcomed guests here from around the world for many years. Our background and interests are the arts, travel and animal welfare.
Please note we can't assist with workawayers seeking Italian citizenship/residence
Help around the house
Sicily has a rich cultural lanscape and there is plenty of sightseeing of both architectural and natural sites including Mount Etna, Taormina, beaches etc.
We also have a house full of books if travellers want a quieter stay.
In the surrounding area, English is not necessarily always spoken if travellers want a fuller immersion into the Italian language.
The main task is garden maintenance, clearing leaves, weeds and brambles, watering.
Volunteers should preferably have some experience of controlled burning and using compost heaps. There is currently some summer garden waste to dispose of which can be done with fire from the end of September.
Electric hedgecutter and weed trimmer available.
The house also needs to be given a clean and check to see everything is in its place (attention to detail is a must) and some exterior paint touch-ups in a few limited areas might be needed.
We will also need a workawayer to allow access and keep an eye on workmen installing a tank in the garden for a couple of weeks (dates to be confirmed). In that case, although you won't be asked to work more than 3-4 hours a day, you would need to be present at the property for as long as the workmen are there (usually 8 hours).
Some Italian would be really useful/essential.
Please note that we cannot travel to the house for now so you would be on your own and our pets are not at the villa either but we would be in regular whatsapp/email contact to supervise the tasks and we are in touch with locals who can provide back-up if needed.
Our expected hours are lower than usual as we aren't there to provide meals.
As this is currently a house sitting situation, you would need to be fairly self-sufficient, mature and responsible, able to hold the fort.
Responsive communication is also essential. Having your own transport would also be a help.
Please ensure you read our profile carefully if you'd like to get in touch, indicating your awareness that we are not currently in situ.
A comfortable bedroom and private ensuite bathroom available in the house, suitable for one or two people.
Volunteers are expected to keep and leave their space clean and tidy and help with daily household tasks, ie. washing up/taking out trash in addition to the main work.
UPDATE: Any information here relating to local transport will currently be dependent on Covid-19 regulations which are in a state of constant flux.
There are buses from the nearby town going to Catania, and to nearby villages in the surrounding area.
There is also little train called the Circumetnea which can be taken for a sightseeing tour, stopping at various small towns around Mount Etna.
That said, local transport is quite limited but all our volunteers have found it easy to hitch a ride. Having your own transport would be a bonus to make the most of the area.
Apart from the nearby world-famous resort of Taormina and stunning Mount Etna, further afield are the beautiful baroque towns of southeast Sicily.
Several of these sites, including Catania, are UNESCO world heritage sites.
The local village is pretty and has basic shops and a bar but it's very quiet so not suitable if you want a very lively local town.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
This host has indicated that they love having digital nomads stay.
3-4 hours a day, 5 days a week
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