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Most of the island, including the South-East with 4-star lodging
Reservation info, hotel details and departure dates follow the itinerary and summary. Visit our general tours page for faqs about our company and our tours. Important purchase conditions follow on this page.
Around Sicily in 9 days and 8 nights. Enjoy the timeless history, culture, cuisine and sunshine of Sicily in a tour (very) conveniently planned with just three hotel check-ins and a cross-island itinerary – instead of a lengthy "circuit" around the island with the same place as starting and ending point. Your delightful itinerary crosses Sicily from Siracusa to Palermo to Taormina, meaning that your arrival and departure will be at Catania airport. (The difference between this itinerary and our other popular tours is more time to discover the splendid, Baroque southeastern cities of Ragusa and Noto.) Specialised local guides in Palermo, Agrigento and Siracusa. Departures from March through November are guaranteed with as few as two participants. Group size is 2 to 12. Compare this tour to others you'll find advertised and you'll see that it places a special emphasis on culture and history in Sicily's very diverse regions.
(Please note: Summary follows. All breakfasts are included, other meals included are indicated in bold face. Locality and site names link to detailed descriptions on Best of Sicily.)
Saturday: Arrival at Siracusa. Independent transfer from Catania airport. Check-in at your hotel in Siracusa. (Information on airport transfers is provided near the end of this page.) Overnight in Siracusa.
Sunday: Following breakfast, we'll explore the vast archeological park. Siracusa (Syracuse) was home to Archimedes and Plato, a place where Paul of Tarsus preached. It was one of the most important cities of the ancient Greek world. Then we'll visit the old city, the island of Ortygia before a delightful excursion to Noto, one of Sicily's Baroque cities. Overnight in Siracusa.
Monday: Breakfast followed by excursion to Ragusa, where we'll tour the medieval and baroque districts and enjoy a light lunch in a local trattoria. This afternoon, we'll visit Modica, famous for its chocolate making. Evening at leisure and overnight in Siracusa.
Tuesday: Following breakfast and check-out, we venture westward into Sicily's rugged interior to Agrigento to visit its timeless Greek temples and vast archeological park. We'll have a light lunch en route to our next stop, Palermo. Overnight in Palermo.
Wednesday: Following breakfast, we'll explore Palermo with a visit to Palermo's medieval Martorana Church, the Baroque Quattro Canti, Piazza Pretoria and a street market. In mid-afternoon, following time at leisure for lunch, we'll visit the Norman abbey of Monreale, overlooking the city, famous for its timeless Byzantine mosaics and Norman-Arab cloister. Evening at leisure. Overnight in Palermo.
Thursday: Following breakfast we'll venture into Sicily's wine region. We'll stop at hilltop Erice, famous for its Phoenician heritage, medieval atmosphere and delicious pastries. Next we'll travel to Trapani along the coast below, known for its salt pans (marshes) and wind mills. Following a light lunch at an olive farm, we'll visit hilltop Segesta's timeless Greek temple and amphitheatre, and then enjoy an estate wine tasting. Overnight in Palermo.
Friday: Following breakfast and check-out, we leave for Piazza Armerina's ancient Roman villa, well-known for its mosaics. Following a light lunch and wine tasting in nearby Butera, we'll explore this unique archeological site and then continue on to Taormina. Evening at leisure in this charming hilltop town of winding streets and enticing shops, medieval walls, Roman ruins and a Greek amphitheatre. Overnight in Taormina.
Saturday: Buffet breakfast and a day of leisure for shopping and sightseeing in Taormina. The atmosphere of this hilltop town, its shops and restaurtants, makes it a great place to spend a day indulging personal tastes and unexpected curiosities. Optional excursion up the slopes toward the summit of Mount Etna, Sicily's highest mountain and Europe's largest active volcano. Another option is a cooking class. (See optional excursions below.) Evening and overnight in Taormina.
Sunday: Following breakfast and check-out, independent transfer to Catania Airport. (Information on airport transfers is provided near the end of this page.)
Summary & Accommodation (lodging):
Prices: €1,990 per person double occupancy (i.e. two persons per room), €2490 single occupancy, payable by bank wire transfer or major credit card. See our general tours page and Conditions (below) for purchase conditions and cancellation policies. (Please note that there is a €100 supplement for the tour departing on April 19th, Easter week.)
Does not include: Beverages, tips (gratuities) to escorts (or guides/drivers), airfare, meals not indicated, entrance fees at archeological/historical sites (total approx. €70), trip insurance, airport transfers (may be purchased separately), porterage and baggage handling, options, anything not mentioned under "Includes" above, city tax (see below).
Accommodation: Double room with private bathroom. Single room with supplement ("single occupancy").
Guide/Escort Language: English.
Group Size: From 2 to 12 participants.
Reservation Confirmation: In most cases we can accept a reservation 25 days prior to departure. However, to guarantee your place(s) we require reserving/confirming at least 45 days before the tour's start date.
City Tax: Following the example of Rome, Paris and New York, a few Sicilian cities have begun to tax hotel stays. The law prohibits billing or collection of the "city tax" by travel agents, so you may be required to pay this tax of €2 - €4 directly to the hotel at check-out.
This tour is organized by Chat & Tour (Tradizione Turismo), Via Gen. Sirtori 25, 90145 Palermo, Italy. Visit our general tours page for faqs and purchase conditions regarding this and other tours.
Optional Excursions & Activities in Taormina:
1) Etna Jeep Excursion & Country Snack: You'll be taken by jeep to the higher altitude of the volcano slopes, including Fontana Peak the 'extinct' craters of the Sartorius Peaks and the lava flow from the 2002 eruption. Then you'll enjoy a snack at a farmhouse offering typical Sicilian cuisine. Returning to Taormina, the partially off-road drive will pass the Alcantara Gorge. €130.00 per person (8:30-2:30). We also offer a series of excursions on ATV 4x4 Quad Bikes (shown here) on the slopes of Etna and in the scenic Alcantara Valley nearby.
2) Market Gourmet Cooking Class: This is the epitome of food preparation from start to finish. Independent transfer to a local restaurant (near your hotel) where you'll be met by chefs Antonio Orlando and Maria. At an open-air market you'll select the fresh ingredients of your culinary creation - which (accompanied by the perfect wine) you'll enjoy as your lunch, followed by dessert. Preparing and tasting this piece of Sicily is an experience you'll never forget. The class runs from 9 AM to 2 PM (lunch time). €90.00 per person (available 15 March to 15 November).
Airport Transfers & Extra Nights:
Airport Transfer: While there are buses, trains and taxis to Siracusa and Taormina from Catania's airport, we can arrange a personalized transfer at €140.00 per person (based on a minimum of two passengers). Travel time in each case is approximately 50 minutes.
Pre Night in Siracusa: A night (or more) immediately preceding the tour. Double occupancy (double or twin) €110.00 per person, Single occupancy €195.00. Slightly lower rates may be available during low season. Whenever possible, lodging will be in the same hotel used during the tour.
Post Night in Taormina: A night (or more) immediately following the tour. Double occupancy (double or twin) €210.00 per person, Single occupancy €410.00. Slightly lower rates may be available during low season. Whenever possible, lodging will be in the same hotel used during the tour.
Conditions and Terms for 2015 Tours
If purchased directly from the Italian tour operator (i.e. Tradizione Turismo by Chat & Tour Srl) via this website, service shall be governed by the laws of the Italian Republic and the European Union. Local laws may also apply for any tour purchased through a travel agent outside Italy. It is the responsibility of each participant to be in possession of the necessary travel document, such as a valid passport. Basic services are insured in compliance with Italian law. Certain fees indicated (i.e. costs cited which are outside the actual tour price), particularly admission fees at archeological sites, are understood to be beyond the tour operator agency's control and therefore subject to change without notice.
Hotel ratings are those established by the Italian travel commission and may differ from those indicated in privately-published travel guide books or websites. Tours begin in Palermo or Taormina, as indicated, on the dates specified. Unless the tour is purchased by a travel agent representing us, billing is processed through the tour operator, based here in Palermo, Italy (i.e. Chat & Tour's Tradizione Turismo). In the event that the tour operator agency effects cancellation of a tour at any time prior to departure, its sole responsibility and liability is limited to refunding the client the amount it has received in payment for the tour up to that date. The tour operator reserves the right to cancel or reschedule any tour departure in accordance with operating requirements or circumstances beyond its control (force majeure).
LEGAL STUFF: Tradizione Turismo by Chat & Tour, Via Generale Sirtori 25, 90145 - Palermo, Italy. Full Travel Agency Licence Number: 996/VII/Tur-Sicily • IATA Tids 96 27583 0 • VAT (Partita IVA): IT04943140824 • ASTA Member Number: 900166379 • Site Member: ID 9310610 • NTA Member: TID 034 250.
©2013 Best of Sicily, Palermo, Italy. Unauthorized use
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