Tour description

12 DAYS SICILY SMALL GROUP TOURS : A LAND OF CONTRASTS 

Experience the Sicilian lifestyle and tradition with a small group tour limited to 12/14 travelers only! We are excited to introduce a once in a lifetime journey to discover beautiful Sicily travelling from west to east, through the magical interior of this paradise island.
Travel to Sicily with its idyllic climate, archaeology treasures, dramatic vistas and hearty cuisine that embodies all things Sicilian. Extravagant scenic beauty, a multicultural crossroads with a history that dates back to 3,000 years, an exuberant and richly layered culture and a tradition of food and wine that is celebrated the world over…all converge here in sunny Sicily! On this small Sicily 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 – a literal Bible in gold. Sit in Taormina’s Greek theater looking out at still-smouldering Mt.Etna and you can’t help but feel goosebumps. 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. Enjoy an Italian evening Opera in Taormina and a pizza making experience in one of the best taverns. The Greek influence is particularly strong in the south of Italy – we’ll see better preserved temples here than in Greece itself!

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. Sicily is a world apart, an island separated from the rest of Italy not only by the sea but also by centuries of history and cultural experience.

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

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS & INCLUSIONS: 12 DAYS/11 NIGHTS
  • Guaranteed departure group travel: small, friendly group limited to 12/14 participants only!
  • More than 15 included sightseeing tours and cultural experiences
  • Guided tour of SPICY PALERMO and MONUMENTAL MONREALE
  • TAORMINA: Mediterranean garden in the foothills of Mount Etna
  • ITALIAN OPERA evening in a private Theater in TAORMINA
  • Tour of CATANIA with its FISH MARKET
  • 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
  • Celebrate your arrival in Taormina visiting the hill town of CASTELMOLA
  • CRUISING ORTIGIA ISLAND (weather permitting)
  • Included discovery of SEGESTA TEMPLE and stunning hill town of ERICE
  • Visit the treasures of Sicilian Baroque: NOTO & RAGUSA
  • 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
  • “SICILIAN HOME-HOSTED MEAL” in a quaint village
  • Discover unknown Sicily -the hill town of SAVOCA
  • Enjoy a lecture on the MAFIA in CORLEONE
  • Experience the “THE SALT PANS & MUSEUM OF THE SALT”near TRAPANI
  • Authentic and personalized PIZZA MAKING EXPERIENCE near TAORMINA
  • Exclusive visit to an OLIVE ESTATE near SCICLI
  • Included CABLE-WAY from ERICE to TRAPANI (weather permitting) and much more
  • Visit popular UNESCO World heritage sites
  • Exceptional Sicilian tour director, experienced to accompany you throughout your journey
  • Entrances to main Sicilian archaeological sites are included
  • Transportation on tour, via private air-conditioned 19 seats motorcoach
  • Included gratuity for city guides
  • City guides included in Palermo, Monreale, Agrigento,Siracusa and Taormina
  • City taxes and service charges at all hotels and restaurants
  • No hidden extras
  • Early arrival/Late stay options: We strongly recommend arriving a day or more prior to tour start.We’ll be happy to make these arrangements for you.
  • All transfers while overseas, baggage transfers and porters are included (not in Hotel Centrale Palace-Palermo)
  • Included regional meals: All breakfasts, 3 street food experience, 5 dinners, 6 lunches (main meals include regional wine, mineral water, espresso coffee or tea only)
  • Arrival & departure: The tour will begin with transfers from Palermo airport to the hotel and end with a transfer to the airport in Catania from Taormina at scheduled times
  • Activity level: 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 HOTELS

Our Hotels are all four/five-stars properties that have been selected principally for their central location

TOUR ITINERARY

 

SICILY SMALL GROUP TOUR “A LAND OF CONTRASTS TRAVEL ITINERARY”

TOUR LIMITED TO 12/14 PARTICIPANTS ONLY FROM PALERMO TO CATANIA

DAY 1 : WELCOME TO SPICY PALERMO 

Arrive in Palermo International Airport and travel to the city center for a three nights stay in our central”GRAND HOTEL WAGNER” or similar, close to the city’s architecturally treasures. At 6.30 pm meet your local tour manager for a welcome drink followed by a tasty dinner in a local restaurant.Overnight in PALERMO.

DAY 2 : HIGHLIGHTS OF PALERMO & MONUMENTAL MONREALE

Breakfast in hotel. Start your discovery of Sicily with a guided tour of Palermo, the Sicilian capital. A crossroads of history, Palermo holds the distinction of being the world’s most conquered city and a melting pot of civilizations ranging from the Phoenicians, Romans and Byzantines to the Arabs and Normans. We have included today a visit to the Byzantine Martorana church, famous for its impressive Norman mosaics, the evocative Palatine Chapel, dating back to the 12th century,famous for its impressive mosaics and time permitting, some of the rooms of the Royal Palace and a visit to the the Ballaro‘ or Capo market located in the ancient Arabic quarter of the city. Following an included foodie experience with Sicilian arancina and panelle, you’ll enjoy a short drive to the hills of Palermo to discover the town 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. Evening is on your own to enjoy Palermo.Overnight in PALERMO

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

This morning we take a drive to Segesta, a unique archaeological site famous for its magnificent 5th century Doric temple. Though never completed it is one of the best preserved examples of a Greek temple.We continue travelling along the Salt Road, passing Salt Pans and windmills and learning about the history and process of salt harvesting at the Museum of the Salt in Trapani. Following this, we’ll be reaching 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 impressive Castle with views over the Egadi Islands. After an included “slow food lunch“, descend to the bottom of the hill by a 10 mins cable-way ride (weather permitting).Rest of the evening is on your own. Overnight stay in PALERMO

DAY 4 :  INTRIGUING CORLEONE & AGRIGENTO VALLEY OF THE TEMPLES 

This morning’s drive takes you south from Palermo to the small 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. After some time on your own for lunch,you’ll continue 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 country hotel “BAGLIO DELLA LUNA” or 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 Villa Romana del Casale,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.The villa was a luxurious hunting lodge used, some believe by the Roman emperor Maximian. After being abandoned in the 1200s, it was covered by a mudslide that protected the mosaics until systematic excavation in 1880s. Following an included lunch in a country family restaurant, your journey continues to the city of Siracusa. Spend the next three nights at the 19th century “ALGILA’ ORTIGIA CHARME HOTEL” or similar, in the heart of the island of Ortigia. The rest of the afternoon is at leisure to make your own discoveries or simply wandering the colorful winding streets and alleys of eleganOrtigia. Overnight stay in SIRACUSA

DAY 6 : SIRACUSA- “TOWN OF TYRANTS”

Encapsulating Sicily’s timeless beauty, Syracuse is a dense tapestry of overlapping cultures and civilizations. 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 that is subdivided by columns and the Temple of Athena from the 5th century BC lying behind it and the Caravaggio painting in the charming church of St Lucia. After an included “foodie experience” at the lively market, you’ll be sailing around the fascinating island of Ortigia to discover some of its prehistoric caves (weather permitting).Dinner is included in a local tavern.Overnight in SIRACUSA

DAY 7 : SICILIAN BAROQUE TREASURES OF NOTO, RAGUSA & OLIVE OIL FARM

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, in the wake of a mighty eruption of Etna, this corner of Sicily was devastated by an earthquake. Towns were rapidly rebuilt out of the glowing local limestone. Visit the UNESCO town of Noto, with its remarkable architectural integrity, its honey-color buildings and famous domed Cathedral, an undisputed highlight  of the Baroque architecture. After viewing the town of Modica from a panoramic terrace,you’ll journey to the ancient Ragusa Ibla, famous for its labyrinth of crooked lanes, tiny squares and noble Palazzos. After time on your own and a taste of Ragusan products and local chocolate, you’ll journey into the countryside near Scicli to visit a Sicilian farm where to learn about the rural life in Sicily, sampling some olive oil and wine. Salute!!Evening is on your own.Overnight stay in SIRACUSA

DAY 8 : VOLCANIC CATANIA,GREEK NAXOS & SUBLIME CASTELMOLA

After breakfast at our hotel, we depart for Taormina, one of the island’s most ancient and beautiful destinations in Sicily. On the way you’ll discover the vibrant city of Catania, which owes its homogeneous Baroque architecture in gloomy black lava to the last quake of 1693. During your free time,you might consider to visit  the Cathedral Of St. Agatha, where the reliquary of the patron saint is housed,Piazza Duomo (Cathedral Square), the Bellini theater, the Villa Gardens or the lively local fish Market. Continue your journey 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 lunch on a private sandy beach.Following this, visit the hilltown of Castelmola perched above Taormina from where to enjoy fabulous views over the Ionian coast and Mount Etna. Spend the last 4 nights in Taormina at the “HOTEL VILLA SCHULER or similar, with breakfast included.Dinner is on your own this evening in one of the local trattorias. Overnight stay in TAORMINA

DAY 9 : SEDUCTIVE TAORMINA, HOME-HOSTED FAMILY & UNKNOWN SAVOCA

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. Its origin goes back to the time of Dionysus in about 400 BC and remained an important city during the Greek and Roman periods. The Theater and Odeon still survive as reminders of those times.Start the day with a guided tour of the colorful medieval center of Taormina, visiting the Greek-Roman theater, being enchanted by the stupendous views of the Ionian coast and Mt Etna. After an included home-hosted lunch, you’ll visit the picturesque village of Savoca, set on the foothills of the Peloritani Mountains where to visit the 18th century Bar Vitelli, one of Coppola’s favorite spots and the church of St.Lucia. Evening is on your own for more explorations.Overnight stay in TAORMINA

DAY 10 : MAJESTIC MOUNT ETNA, WINERY VISIT & OPERA EVENING

Breakfast in hotel. Explore majestic Mount Etna, known to the Greeks as the “column that holds up the sky”-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. Afterwards descend to the village of Milo to visit a family run winery to taste excellent Sicilian wines accompanied by local appetizers. In the evening you are invited for a magical Italian Opera in a private theater. Enjoy the splendors of Sicily!!! Overnight stay in TAORMINA

DAY 11 : MORNING PIZZA MAKING EXPERIENCE & ARRIVEDERCI DINNER

The day is on your own for further explorations of this beautiful town.Join us at 11.30 for a hands on pizza making experience (2hrs duration) with lunch in an ancient villa dating back to the 600’s where a professional “pizzaiolo” (pizza chef) will be waiting to give you an introduction to the history of pizza and how to make it. End the experience with an included taste of Sicilian granita.In the evening celebrate your Sicilian adventure with an “Arrivederci dinner” sharing travel memories and toasting new friends. Overnight stay in TAORMINA

DAY 12 : ARRIVEDERCI SICILIA

Morning transfers to Catania airport for your flight home.

2019 TOUR DATES & LAST MINUTE

2019 TOUR PRICE: € 3,500           SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: € 500  Currency Converter   

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

2018/2019 TOUR DATES

Available departures

2019 Tour Price: € 3,500 |Single Suppl: € 500 | 12 days/11 nights |up to 12/14 Participants only! Please check our tour calendar page for availability and offers

Tour score and score breakdown

10 / 10

Based on 1 reviews

Overall
10   
Accommodation
10   
Transport
10   
Meals
10   
Guide
10   
Value for money
10   
Program accuracy
10   

Guest reviews

  • Small Group Tours & Shore Trips in Sicily, Malta, South Italy & Portugal
    2014-10-12

    " A once in a lifetime experience" - John & Mary Mitchell (USA)

    All "FANTASTICO"