Discovering Hidden Treasures With a Tour of Sicily and Aegadian Islands
The experience of travelling in Sicily is something unique.
Sicily is the “factory of the myth”: many characters, true stories or legends have contributed to the creation of archetypes, which are still part of Sicilians’ life.
This is an incredible chest full of treasures which show their peculiarity.
They are cultural deposits in various areas; from the literary to the architectural and artistic, which marked, in this part of the world, the path of human civilization.
In the most famous Tomasi di Lampedusa’s novel “The Leopard”, the Prince of Salina, the main character, who lived in a period of transition, few years before the start of the Italian country, stated: “Everything needs to change, so everything can stay the same”.
This prophetic claim still accompanies us in every choice of our civil and political life and it contains the essence of Sicily.
This tour offers the opportunity to explore Sicily, immersing in its myths, in order to understand what is behind the synthesis of Tomasi di Lampedusa and the important Sicilian cultural mixes.
We would like to propose a trip in a multi-faceted land, through all the senses, enjoying all the scents, colour and sounds of the most beautiful Mediterranean island.
Our guides, in a busy but useful week, will be able to make your tour in Sicily an unforgettable experience; as J. W. Goethe wrote “…Sicily is the key to everything ”
- Palazzo Florio
- Giardino dell’Impossibile
- Cala Rossa
- Cala Azzurra
- Scheduling: Shared Tour
- Languages offered on the Activity / Tour: English, Italian, Spanish
- Duration: 10 days
- Printed Voucher Accepted
- There is a reduction for 3 people sharing a room
- There is a supplement for single occupancy
- overnights in 4* Hotels on a half board basis
- Departures every Saturday from April 27th to September 28th 2019
- Pick-up serviceHotel in Catania
- Easy CancellationThe cancellation policy for this tour is: -From 29 to 21 (working) days before the arrival 10% of penalty - From 20 to 12 (working) days before the arrival 30% of penalty - From 11 to 7 (working) days before the arrival 50% of penalty - From 6 to 4 (working) days before the arrival 70% of penalty - From 3 days to the day of the arrival 100% of penalty
- Instant Confirmation
- Cut-off TimeAvailable to be booked until 24 hours before the tour starts. We reserve the option to confirm the tour or not due to availability.
- Private tour extension to Aegadian Islands
- Hydrofoil go and back Trapani - Favignana – Trapani
- Local guide in Favignana city centre (4 hrs)
- 1 excursion in group Favignana– Levanzo (lunch on board included)
- City taxes Aegadian Islands
- Multilingual Tour leader and professional travel guide* (English, Italian or Spanish) from the evening of the 1st day to the evening of the 5th day, local guides or audio-guides where necessary.
- Gran Comfort bus (from the 2nd day to the 5th day)
- Accommodation in charming 4 stars hotels mostly located in the city centre
- Half board basis in hotels or local restaurants (dinner – 3 main courses fixed menu , beverages not included) to have a taste of Sicilian and Italian cuisine.
- Visit of the main suggestive Unesco World Heritage Sites: Syracuse, Noto, Etna, Catania city centre, Cefalù, Monreale, Palermo.
- 1 lunch in Taormina on day 3 (fixed menu, beverages not included) and show-cooking
- Tasting of Sicilian typical products: Etna (day 3): visit of a beekeeping honey company and honey tasting; Catania (day 4): tasting of Sicilian “granita & brioche”. Palermo (day 5) tasting of local street food .
- Private transfer Hotel in Palermo - Trapani Port
- Private transfer Trapani Port - Hotel in Trapani
- Transfers in/out
- All lunches except for the one on day 3 and day 8
- Entrance fees at monuments/museum
- City taxes (where compulsory)
- Anything not specified under “The rate includes”
- Tips and extras in general
Arrive independently to the hotel in the charming city of Catania (optional private transfer on request).
In the evening you will meet our tour-leader and your travel companions and enjoy a welcome dinner and an overnight stay in the hotel.
After breakfast in the hotel we will visit Syracuse the most beautiful and greatest Greek colony in Sicily and World Heritage Site!
The visit will start with the Archaeological Park of Neapolis, with its Greek Theatre, the Roman Amphitheatre, the Latomie of Paradise and the Ear of Dionysius.
We will continue visiting the splendid Ortigia, a small island which is the historical centre of Syracuse.
In Ortigia, you will admire the beautiful Cathedral which dominates the square with its authoritative presence.
The present façade is a powerful Sicilian-Baroque composition but it gives no hint that this building was once a Doric temple! From Piazza Duomo, you will reach a wide terrace on the waterfront surrounding the famous Arethusa’s Fountain, one of the most famous fresh-water sources of the Greek world.
Free time for lunch.
Departure to Noto, the capital of Sicilian Baroque, famous for its fine buildings of the early eighteenth century and declared Unesco World Heritage Site.
Inspired by Baroque ideals of “open city”, Noto is a rare masterpiece and the clearest example of theatrical tastes in 18th-century architecture whose local limestone has been burnt gold by the sun.
Noto’s Baroque is, in fact, a game of elegant curves, floral weaves, perspective views palaces and gardens, capitals and ornaments that adorn the facades of churches and monasteries.
We will visit Palazzo Nicolaci Villadorata, beautiful noble residence in Baroque style and once the residence of Don Giacomo Nicolaci, a patron of the arts.
Back to Catania for dinner and an overnight stay in the hotel.
This morning we will leave to visit Etna, the highest (c. 3350m) volcano in Europe and one of the largest and most active in the world, nowadays Unesco World Heritage Site.
Its regional park protects 59.000 hectares of unique geology, flora and fauna, villages and farms, and traditional methods of forestry, bee-keeping, wine manufacture, stonework and carpentry.
Views of stunning landscapes will amaze you heading to Rifugio Sapienza.
We will reach the “Crateri Silvestri”, small volcanic cones now inactive, surrounded by ancient lava flows.
The view beyond the mountain’s hundreds of subsidiary cones and craters can extend across the whole of Sicily, the Aeolian islands and Calabria. The spectacle is unique!
Later we will visit a company of beekeeping: visit of the honey extraction lab, tasting of homemade honey and typical products of the area.
We will proceed to Taormina, a charming town renowned for its magnificent position above the sea commanding a celebrated view of Etna.
Lunch in a typical restaurant where you will assist in a show-cooking lesson of some typical Sicilian cuisine dishes.
In the afternoon we will visit Taormina’s fascinating Greek theatre, and then you will have free time for a nice walk among the picturesque Medieval typical narrow streets, go shopping and look around the local handicrafts (coral jewels, precious laces, ceramics, sweets and much more).
The day will end with an overview of the beautiful Riviera dei Ciclopi.
Back to our hotel in Catania for dinner and overnight stay.
Today we will visit the historical centre of Catania stated Unesco World Heritage Site, with its original Baroque style and its unique streets built with black lava stone.
The colour scheme of the city-centre building, in fact, is black and dark grey, relieved with white limestone details around the doors and windows. The result is extremely elegant.
The walking tour will start across the “Peschiera” (the ancient fish market) to reach the scenic Duomo square with its magnificent Cathedral and the famous “Liotru” statue, antique lava-stone elephant, symbol of the city.
Not far from here we will reach University Square and we will have a walk along the splendid baroque Via dei Crociferi, the most representative 18th century street in Catania, where we will admire the famous S. Benedict Monastery, Unesco World Heritage Site.
Before going on along the precious city centre, we will stop in a historic bar of the city to taste the typical “granita & brioche”.
Free time for lunch then transfer to Cefalù, charming Medieval town situated on the northern coast of Sicily.
We will visit its stunning Norman Dome and you will have free time to stroll through the town or to visit the famous and well-known Mandralisca Museum.
We will proceed to Palermo for an overnight stay and dinner at the hotel or in a restaurant nearby.
After breakfast in the hotel, the morning will be spent visiting Monreale, its huge Norman Cathedral, proclaimed the Eighth Wonder of the World, and its splendid Cloister in Arab-Norman style: admirable masterpiece of art, sculpture, and semi-precious stones marquetry!
Later we will discover the stunning Palermo, one of the richest towns in the Island for its history and art.
Palermo stands on a bay at the foot of Mt Pellegrino, a headland described by Goethe as the loveliest he had ever seen.
While the Baroque predominates, there is a profusion of different architectural styles reflecting the city’s multicultural past: Punic walls, Art Nouveau villas, noble residences, XVIIth century squares, including an elegant opera house.
We will visit the wonderful Arab-Norman Cathedral, the astonishing Martorana Church and the amazing Cappella Palatina, miracle example from a historical and an artistic point of view, of how different cultures, religions and way of thinking apparently incompatible can coexist.
Ruggero II in fact employed both Byzantine, Muslim and Latin workers.
Along the visiting day, we will have a stop for a food surprise in the famous Antica Focacceria San Francesco.
Free time for lunch before continuing our walk we will admire the Teatro Massimo and the debated fountain in Pretoria Square, situated in the ancient Kalsa area and adorned with XVI century sculptures.
Dinner and an overnight stay in the hotel.
After breakfast in the hotel, take a private transfer to Trapani.
Boarding on the hydrofoil to reach Favignana the larger and most important of the Aegadian Islands, in the ’70s was named “La Farfalla” by the painter Salvatore Fiume, thanks to its butterfly shape.
Free time in the afternoon, dinner in a local restaurant and an overnight stay in the hotel.
After breakfast in the hotel today the tour will continue along the Favignana city centre.
This charming fisherman village founded in the XVIIth century hosts the valuable Palazzo Florio the most known building in the island.
The Florio’s were an Italian family, the main character of Sicilian industry during the Belle Epoque.
Then we will visit the Ex Stabilimento Florio, the ancient “tonnara” (tuna factory), a fine example of industrial archaeology, today museum and exhibition centre of several historical findings which testify the flourishing past of the tonnara.
Later in the morning, we discover Villa Margherita’s Giardino dell’Impossibile, hypogeum gardens created inside ancient tuff quarries.
It is a unique open-air museum, created by the mastery of quarrymen who have built an exceptional maze of tunnels and sculptures, which today host a botanical garden with over 200 species of Mediterranean plants!
This stunning environment will surely give you strong and deep emotions.
Free lunch and free time in the afternoon to give you the opportunity to have a swim in one of the splendid sea coves the Island offers.
The most known Cala Rossa, located in a beautiful tufa quarry, shows a crystal clear sea and cliffs from which you can admire a spectacular view, while Cala Azzurra is popular for its sandy white beach.
Dinner in a local restaurant and an overnight stay.
Later in the morning, you will leave Favignana for a boat tour towards its beautiful sea coves, where you will enjoy a swim in their blue waters.
After lunch on board, you will proceed towards Levanzo, where you will stop for about 1 hour to offer you the chance to visit this lovely fisherman village and have a stop to taste the delicious local “granita” and “gelato”.
The tour will proceed to head to the Il Faraglione a small island of the archipelago and the most lovely sea coves, such as Cala Fredda and Cala Minnola, where you will stop for a dip.
Back to Favignana harbour in the late afternoon for dinner and an overnight stay at the hotel.
Breakfast in the hotel, free time, check-out of the hotel and the transfer to Trapani.
You will spend the afternoon in the lovely Trapani’s city centre, also known as the “City of 100 churches” and popular for its which hosts an impressive collection of fine local coral art crafts!
The city owns a fascinating and legendary history; represented by Virgil in the Aeneid, Trapani’s origins are connected to Carthage, the most bitter Rome’s enemy.
Dominated by the Roman empire and the Spanish kingdom, it still reveals this fusion made of different cultures and people.
You will have the chance to stroll among the nice alleys, discovering its Arab atmosphere.
Dinner and an overnight stay in the hotel.
Breakfast in the hotel and is the end of the tour.
Private transfers or excursions available.
- For organisational reason the itinerary may be modified
- if you would like to book the privilege package which includes Superior/Deluxe Room, Private transfers in/out, City taxes and all entrance fees as per program please email emailprivatetour.com for prices and availability
- If you want to book your transfers from/to the airport or book and additional activities please email firstname.lastname@example.org