Sicily is a region rich in history, pleasant and varied landscapes, monuments and artistic works, of which it still has many charming expressions. However, tourism has not taken off in a way that is coherent with the available resources; the reasons for this must be sought in the lack of initiatives by Public Administrations and private citizens, who have not seen fit to make the capital investments necessary to increase receptivity and to equip the area with the most useful infrastructures. Today, with tourism in full expansion, a new, attractive opportunity has arisen to make up for lost time, provided that the local authorities decide to carry out their duties of exploiting the island’s resources. In order to pinpoint the possible paths to be followed for exploiting the marginal areas, I have analysed the opportunities for development in one of Sicily’s municipalities where there are several useful resources for achieving the success with tourism which it does not have at present: this municipality is Palma di Montechiaro, in Agrigento province.
I have chosen this municipality for the following reasons: -because it combines the south coast of Sicily with the hills, and therefore two areas that are completely different but, in certain ways, complementary, because they are rich in resources of landscape and vegetation; -because it has an unusual history behind it: that of a noble house which, thanks to its last descendant, has achieved international notoriety. -finally, since, as has been stated, its economy has not been developed in spite of the richness of the resources it possesses, an attempt has been made to understand the motivations and to define actions that, if carried out, should speed up the pace of development. In the first part of this document, therefore, I have illustrated the history, the cultural traditions, the landscape and naturalistic resources and the socio-economic situation of the area; subsequently, I have shown the size of the flows of tourists into the province and the problems in the tourist sector; finally, in the third part, I have outlined some opportunities for intervention to expand the local area on a tourist and agricultural-food level.