Tour description

SICILY SMALL GROUP TOUR

Experience the Sicilian lifestyle and tradition with a Sicily small group tour limited to 12/14 travelers only! Travel to Sicily with its idyllic climate, archaeology treasures, dramatic vistas and hearty cuisine that embodies all things Sicilian. On this small group tour journey, you’ll delve into one of the most fascinating and coveted regions in Italy.

Stare face to face with some of the world’s best Byzantine mosaics in the cathedral of Monreale. Marvel at the rich archaeological ruins of Siracusa dating to the 5th century BC. Explore the brilliant Roman floor mosaics in the Villa del Casale. Be enchanted by an Italian evening Opera in Taormina and have fun during a pizza making experience.

Sicily has some of Italy’s best beaches and on this tour we make sure that you’ll have time to enjoy them.The cuisine of Sicily varies from one province to the next as do the wines. Perhaps the most beautiful and ornate churches in the world, extraordinary seafood markets and incredible pistachio pastries, cassata gelati, home of the Mafia and amazing wineries alongside the best preserved Greek and Roman ruins in Europe. This is the contradiction and enigma of Sicily;”Italy’s best-kept secret”.

We have a real passion for touring in Sicily and look forward to sharing it with you !

Read what our friends say about this fantastic sicily tour

SICILY SMALL GROUP TOUR- HIGHLIGHTS & INCLUSIONS: 12 DAYS/11 NIGHTS
  • Guaranteed departure group travel: small, friendly group limited to 12/14 participants only!
  • Guided tour of SPICY PALERMO and MONUMENTAL MONREALE
  • TAORMINA: Mediterranean garden in the foothills of Mount Etna
  • Tour of CATANIA with its FISH MARKET & the CYCLOPS COASTLINE
  • SIRACUSA and BAROQUE TREASURES of the South East
  • Guided tour of ORTIGIA ISLAND & NEAPOLIS archaeological area
  • SIRACUSA OPEN MARKET with local tastings
  • Visit unique VALLEY OF THE TEMPLES
  • CRUISING ISOLA BELLA in TAORMINA (weather permitting)
  • Included discovery of SEGESTA TEMPLE and stunning hill town of ERICE
  • Visit the treasures of Sicilian Baroque: NOTO & RAGUSA
  • Enjoy a visit to the romantic village of CEFALU’
  • Cherish an included visit to majestic GREEK THEATRE in TAORMINA
  • Majestic MOUNT ETNA and WINE TASTING in local wine estate
  • Lunch on the golden sandy beach of GIARDINI NAXOS
  • HOME-HOSTED MEAL in a quaint Sicilian village
  • Discover unknown Sicily -the hill town of SAVOCA
  • Enjoy a lecture on the MAFIA in CORLEONE
  • Experience the SALT PANS & MUSEUM OF THE SALT
  • Authentic and personalized PIZZA MAKING EXPERIENCE 
  • Magical NEOCLASSICAL PALACE in RAGUSA
  • Included CABLE-WAY from ERICE to TRAPANI (weather permitting) and much more
  • Visit popular UNESCO World heritage sites
  • Exceptional native tour director to accompany you throughout your journey
  • Main Sicilian archaeological sites entrances are included
  • Transportation on tour, via private air-conditioned 21 seats motorcoach
  • Included gratuity for city guides
  • Local guides included in Palermo, Monreale, Corleone,Agrigento, Roman Villa, Siracusa
  • Hotel city tax and service charges at all properties and restaurants are included
  • No hidden extras
  • Early arrival/Late stay options: We suggest arriving a day or two before your tour begins to allow ample time to get over jet lag and be well-rested for the first few days of your tour.We’ll be happy to make these arrangements for you.Transfers while overseas, baggage transfers and porters are included 
  • Our regional meals: All breakfasts, 4 dinners, 4 lunches (main meals include regional wine, mineral water, espresso coffee or tea only)
  • Tour package does not include transfer from Palermo airport to your hotel, airfare, or any other personal travel expenses.We suggest arriving a day or two before your tour begins to allow ample time to get over jet lag and be well-rested for the first few days of your tour
  • Meet your tour guide on Day 1 at the Palermo hotel at 09.30 for a guided tour of the city
  • Activity level: Light/Moderate
  • Terms & conditions/Single supplement: (View Here) and FAQ View Here)
  • Trip Interruption and Cancellation insurance is not included. We highly recommend Travelex-Insurance.com to protect your vacation.
  • Purchase of European Travel & Health Insurance is strongly recommended
OUR UNIQUE ACCOMMODATIONS
SICILY SMALL GROUP TOUR -DAY-BY-DAY ITINERARY

 

12 DAYS SICILY SMALL GROUP TOUR

“SICILY AMORE MIO TRAVEL ITINERARY”

SICILY SMALL GROUP TOUR LIMITED TO 12/14 PARTICIPANTS FROM PALERMO TO CATANIA

DAY 1 : MONUMENTAL PALERMO

Arrive at Palermo Airport and travel to the city center for a three nights stay at the “CENTRALE PALACE HOTELclose to the city’s architecturally treasures.At 09.30 commence your discovery of Sicily with a guided walking tour of PALERMO, a crossroads of history, being the world’s most conquered city and a melting pot of civilizations.Today we have included a visit to the evocative PALATINE CHAPEL, dating back to the 12th century and a discovery of the famous CAPO MARKET. In the evening, enjoy a welcome drink followed by dinner in a local bistro where you will feel like one of the family.Eat like a local!Overnight in PALERMO.

DAY 2 : BIBLICAL MONREALE & ROMANTIC CEFALU’

Today’s tour takes you to uncover the beauty of MONREALE, known for one of Sicily’s great sites – the stunning 12th century Norman cathedral literally wallpapered with golden mosaics that tell the stories of the bible.Afterwards,depart to the charming fishing town of CEFALUwhere the squares, streets and churches of this medieval town are so postcard-pretty that it’s no wonder director Giuseppe Tornatore chose to set parts of his much-loved film Cinema Paradiso here.The evening is at leisure to mingle with the locals in beautiful Palermo.Overnight in PALERMO

DAY 3 : ANCIENT SEGESTA, SLEEPY ERICE & TRAPANI SALT PANS

Today, we’ll take a panoramic drive to SEGESTA, a unique archaeological site famous for its magnificent never completed 5th century Doric temple.We then continue travelling to the perfectly preserved treasure hill town of ERICE which combines medieval charm with astounding 360-degree views. It boasts a breathtaking setting high above the Tyrrhenian Sea and an imposing Castle with views over the Egadi Islands. After an included lunch in the best local tavern, we’ll descend to the Trapani area,passing Salt Pans and windmills, learning about the history and process of salt harvesting at the Museum of the Salt in TRAPANI.Rest of the evening is on your own.Overnight stay in PALERMO

DAY 4 : INTRIGUING CORLEONE & VALLEY OF THE TEMPLES IN AGRIGENTO 

This morning’s visit takes you south-west from Palermo to the town of CORLEONE,well-known as the birthplace of several Mafia bosses. Here you’ll learn about the MAFIA, during an informative discussion with a member of the community.Afterwards, arrive to the ancient city of AGRIGENTO, a UNESCO heritage site where a local expert will shed light on the VALLEY OF THE TEMPLES, an incredible concentration of Greek temples in varying states of ruin and reconstruction.This historic site was the heart of one of the most important cities in the ancient world and is the prime example of the magnificence of MAGNA GRECIA.Tonight you’ll be staying at the hotel “BAGLIO DELLA LUNAor similar with an included dinner.Overnight stay in AGRIGENTO

DAY 5 :ROMAN VILLA MOSAICS & SIRACUSA’S ELEGANCE

Your transfer to SIRACUSA features a stop at the ROMAN VILLA ,one of the 44 UNESCO World Heritage sites in Italy, built in the first quarter of the 4th century. It contains the richest, largest and most complex collection of Roman mosaics in the world.Following a hearty included lunch in a family restaurant, your journey continues to the town of SIRACUSA for the next three nights at the 19th century boutiqye ALGILA’ HOTEL“or similar.The rest of the afternoon is at leisure to make your own discoveries or simply wandering its colorful winding streets and alleys.Overnight stay in SIRACUSA

DAY 6 : “TAPESTRY OF CULTURES” IN SIRACUSA

In the morning, you’ll explore this major outpost of the Greek empire with a local expert guide.The city boasts an incredible historical heritage, starting from the Archaeological Park, featuring the ancient Greek Theater now used for classical performances, the Latomie del Paradiso, the largest quarry in the ancient urban settlement and the Ear Of Dionysus, a subterranean artificial cave quarry used as a prison. You’ll see numerous elegant Baroque town houses, rebuilt after the earthquake that severely damaged the city in 1693, the elegant Piazza Duomo, dominated by the Cathedral’s baroque facade and the Temple of Athena from the 5th century BC lying behind it.After a foodie experience at the lively market, you’ll have the rest of the day and dinner on your own.Overnight in SIRACUSA

DAY 7 :BAROQUE TREASURES OF NOTO, RAGUSA & ANCIENT PALAZZO 

A full day’s journey today takes you south-east to witness the splendors of the Sicilian Baroque architecture, part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.In 1693 this corner of Sicily was devastated by an earthquake. Towns were rapidly rebuilt out of the glowing local limestone. Visit the stunning UNESCO town of NOTO, with its remarkable architectural integrity, honey-color buildings and famous domed Cathedral. Following this, drive to the ancient town of RAGUSA IBLA, famous for its labyrinth of crooked lanes and tiny squares.Here we’ll visit an ancient aristocratic palace inhabited by the same family for over 200 years.Time on your own for lunch.Overnight stay in SIRACUSA

DAY 8 :VOLCANIC CATANIA,CYCLOPS COASTLINE & TAORMINA ANCIENT THEATER

This morning, depart for TAORMINA, one of the island’s most ancient destinations in Sicily.Clamped to a rocky bluff planted with cypresses,pines and lush subtropical vegetation,the exquisitely maintained medieval town of TAORMINA is Sicily’s glitziest and most dramatically situated resort. On the way you’ll discover the vibrant city of CATANIA, which owes its Baroque architecture in gloomy black lava to the last quake of 1693.During your free time,you might consider visiting the Cathedral of St. Agatha, where the reliquary of the patron saint is housed, the cathedral square, the Bellini theater, the Villa Gardens or the lively fish market.Continue along the panoramic cyclops coastline to reach the fishing village of GIARDINI NAXOS,the site of the first Greek settlement in Sicily for an included seafood lunch on a private sandy beach.End the day with a visit to the crowning Greek-Roman theatre in Taormina, one of Sicily’s great sights, with its dramatic views over Mount Etna.Spend the last 4 nights at the central family “HOTEL VILLA PARADISO” or similar,with breakfast included.Dinner is on your own this evening.Overnight stay in TAORMINA

DAY 9 :UNKNOWN SAVOCA, HOME-HOSTED FAMILY EXPERIENCE & TAORMINA ANCIENT THEATER

The morning starts with a panoramic drive to the trapped-in-time picturesque village of SAVOCA, set on the foothills of the Peloritani Mountains to discover the real Sicily.Seems unchanged since medieval times,with its gated walls,stone cottages and haunting churches.Here you’ll view the 18th century bar Vitelli, one of Coppola’s favorite spots and the church of St.Lucia.Afterwards,a Sicilian family welcomes you for a traditional home-hosted lunch, a delightful way to experience everyday life.Remainder of the day is on your own for more explorations. Overnight stay in TAORMINA

DAY 10 :IN THE SHADOW OF MOUNT ETNA WITH WINERY & HANDS-ON-PIZZA 

Explore majestic MOUNT ETNA, the highest and largest volcano in Europe and one of the world’s most active.The peak changes in size over the years. It currently rises at 11,000 feet above sea level and literally towers above Sicily’s Ionian coast.Due to its scientific value supporting endemic flora and fauna, and its historical significance, Mount Etna was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site.Descend to the village of LINGUAGLOSSA to visit a family run winery for a wine tour.In the evening, visit a popular pizzeria where a professional pizza chef will give you an introduction to the history of pizza and how to make it.Enjoy La Dolce Vita in Taormina.Overnight stay in TAORMINA

DAY 11 : TAORMINA BOAT CRUISE & DOLCE FAR NIENTE IN TAORMINA

In the morning enjoy a private boat cruise around the ISOLA BELLA in TAORMINA followed by time on your own on the beach or simply wander through its elegant gardens, posh cafes, and shops or explore the nearby mountain top village of Castelmola.In the evening celebrate your Sicilian adventure with an “ARRIVEDERCI DINNERsharing travel memories and toasting new friends.Overnight stay in TAORMINA

DAY 12:ARRIVEDERCI SICILIA

Goodbye from all of us at Secret Tours.You might extend your tour to PUGLIASARDINIA ISLAND, MALTA ISLAND or CROATIA & SLOVENIA

SICILY SMALL GROUP TOUR-DATES & PRICING

2022/23 TOUR PRICE: € 3,800           SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: € 500  Currency Converter   

Price is per person based on double room occupancy for 12 days/11 nights

REVIEWS

Sicily Reviews Summary

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Rated 5 out of 5
5 out of 5 stars (based on 5 reviews)
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Recent Sicily Reviews

What a surprise Sicily

Rated 5 out of 5
27/06/2022

Dear Aldo,

We can’t thank you enough for the wonderful, memorable family trip that you organized for us in Sicily. From the first time that we contacted you until we arrived at the airport to return home, you made everything easy for us. Whenever we had a question or concern, your reply was “leave it to me.” Each of us – ranging in age from 20 to 80 – thoroughly enjoyed all of the activities, and we felt like we truly experienced Sicilian life through events such as the home-hosted lunch, visiting a member of a noble family in his family’s perfectly preserved palazzo, making pasta and pizza, and touring la Bella Isola by boat with a fifth-generation captain. All of the meals were excellent and unique, and the hotels were beautiful and perfectly situated for the evening passeggiata. Our driver, Mario, was a welcome sight after our activities. He was a consummate professional, and was always waiting for us with a warm greeting and a cool van just as we finished our activities. Perhaps most importantly, Mario made us feel at ease on the narrow, mountainous roads. I saved the best for last … there cannot possibly be a better guide in all of Italy than Giusi! What a lovely manner she has to go along with her vast knowledge and good humor! Within a couple of days, Guisi felt like part of our family. She was always working, discreetly, to make sure that our activities went smoothly and that each member of our diverse group had the best possible time. When we visited my mother’s family hometown, Giusi showed us her excellent detective skills as well. As soon as we arrived, Guisi started making phone calls and asking people if they knew our family name. We were able to meet several family members through her efforts, and to see our family home and visit the locked churches. It was the highlight of a trip that had many highlights! Thanks to all of you for a beautiful and special trip. We hope to visit Sicily again, and will be in touch!

Melissa Rinzler (USA), June 2022

Response from Secret Italia Tours

Dear Melissa

Thanks so ever much for your beautiful email and I am pleased to hear you all had a wonderful time in Sicily.I agree with you on Giusi. She is such an amazing person and a very good friend of us.Hope to meet you all in the future. By the way we will be at the New York Travel show on October 28, 29, 30

Hope to meet you there

Grazie mille

Aldo

Bella Sicilia

Rated 5 out of 5
21/06/2022

I recently returned from a family tour of Sicily and it was one of the best experiences of my life. I turned 80 in 2022, so that’s many years. It would be difficult to find anything to complain about or suggest any improvements. The hotels were excellent, the meals delicious and plentiful and, of course, our guide, Giusi, made the trip carefree and enriching. Her translating skills were especially appreciated when I visited my Grandfather’s home village, Polizzi Generoso. I wouldn’t have been able to communicate with the many cousins I found there. I know Giusi put in a lot of overtime on that portion of the trip. That was probably the highlight of the tour for me. She skillfully handled the few “glitches,” …no fish for Sam, and scheduling the gondola ride at Etna. Her knowledge and expertise are exceptional, but her warmth impressed me even more. By the end of the tour, we felt we were parting from a dear friend. Mario’s steady hand at the wheel impressed me, too. You have to be a skillful driver to navigate Sicily’s narrow streets.With appreciation for facilitating such a memorable trip,

Maria McAndrew (USA) June 2022

Response from Secret Italia Tours

Dear Maria

Thanks so ever much for your beautiful email and I am pleased to hear you all had a wonderful time in Sicily.I agree with you on Giusi. She is such an amazing person and a very good friend of us.Hope to meet you all in the future. By the way we will be at the New York Travel show on October 28, 29, 30

Hope to meet you there

Grazie mille

Aldo

A Land of Contrasts

Rated 5 out of 5
18/06/2022

My family and I had an incredible journey around Sicily with Secret Italia. The accommodations were exceptional throughout, and our tour guide, Giusi, made a point of noting that we were going to local eateries and hotels whenever possible, which was a nice touch. The ability to fine tune our travel plans was also a great opportunity, as it allowed us to visit the town that my Grandmother can trace back her roots to, in addition to the more typical Sicilian vacation destinations.Giusi was a remarkable guide throughout our journey, serving also as translator, planner, and problem solver. She was highly reactive to our needs, and always made an effort to adapt plans in whatever way requested. She consistently went above and beyond expectations, even helping my Grandmother meet and speak to some far-removed family. The entire experience was extremely moving for my grandmother, and would not have been possible without Giusi there.Mario, our driver had the task of driving us all over the island, and we had no issues at any point while in his care. This is especially notable due to us traveling on some very mountainous roads that I personally would not want to drive on in a Fiat, much less an 18+ person van – kudos to him.5 Stars

Nolan Mcandrew (USA)

The best Sicily tour

Rated 5 out of 5
15/06/2022

Dear Aldo and Katrine,

Thank you so much for the fabulous tour company you have created.We loved our tour of Sicily with Giusi. She is fantastic and made our trip very special.We loved the balance of history incorporated with the local culture.Dinner at Rita’s house was a blast as it reminded me of my elder relatives and the way they prepared food. We were lucky to have great tour mates on this trip. They were real veterans of your other tours which is a testament to your company.We look forward to planning a trip in the future.

DENISE JAEGER, USA

A wonderful Touring Experience in Sicily with Secret Tours

Rated 5 out of 5
14/06/2022

Our tour last month to Sicily was spectacular! We found the hotels you selected clean, centrally located, and beautiful at each destination. Every detail was organized and planned out perfectly. We hit all the beautiful sites, including the historical, cultural, and culinary aspects of each distinct area of Sicily. Our tour guide Giusi was informative and compassionate. She made us feel that we were well taken care of every day. Giusi was the ultimate professional, always eager to help with restaurant reservations and available for any questions we had, day or night. Any tour would be lucky to have Giusi as their guide. We found the local educational experts at the archeological and historical sites gave us keen insight into the rich background of Sicily. We enjoyed the balance of free time to go off and explore this beautiful area. Breakfast was included daily, and we had lunch or dinner provided each day which encompassed delicious local specialties. Our expert mini-bus driver, Andrea, was skilled at navigating busy streets, steep hills, and winding roads. Overall, we would strongly recommend Secret Italia for an excellent small group tour experience!

Jennifer & Frank Maresca, USA

Review Sicily

SICILY

SICILYSicily-An island touching different worlds Sicily is full of beguiling contrasts. The untamed west vies with the flawless Greek classicism of the east and every Mediterranean civilization has passed by, bequeathing marvels fit for the gods and a rich gastronomic heritage.Palermo has bustling markets and grand architecture. Sample fish couscous and the typically Sicilian atmosphere Read more