Splendor of Sicily 8 Days Tour - from Catania

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Discover the beauties of Sicily in a 8 days / 7 nights tour from Catania, through several Unesco Heritage Sites, ancient Greek and Roman heritages, picturesque baroque towns, panoramic views and masterpieces of Art, without forget the chance to try the local culinary delicacies.
All the accommodation are provided in centrally located 4* Hotels.
Departures every Saturday from April 7th to October 27th
The group size is variable , all departures are guaranteed without a minimum number of participants.
The tour is suitable for couples, solo travellers, small groups, seniors.

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Day 1 -  CATANIA 

Independent arrival at the hotel in the charming city of Catania (optional private transfer on request). Meet with our tour-leader; dinner and overnight in hotel.
 



Day 2 -  SIRACUSA – NOTO 

After breakfast in hotel we will visit Siracusa, 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 center of Siracusa. In Ortigia, you will admire the beautiful Cathedral which dominates the square with its authoritative presence. 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. We will visit Palazzo Nicolaci, beautiful noble residence in Baroque style.Back to Catania for dinner and overnight in hotel.


 

Day 3 - ETNA – TAORMINA

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. 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 to a show-cooking lesson for 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 and shopping.The day will end with an overview of the beautiful Riviera dei Ciclopi. Back to our hotel in Catania for dinner and overnight.


 

Day 4 - Tuesday: CATANIA – CEFALU’ 

Today we will visit the historical center of Catania stated Unesco World Heritage Site, with its original baroque style and its unique streets built with black lava stone. The color scheme of the city-centre building, in fact, is black and dark gray, relieved with white limestone details around the doors and windows.Catania was the capital of the Kingdom of Sicily under the Aragonese dynasty. The walking tour will start across the “pescheria” (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 the 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. Free time for lunch. Transfer to Cefalù, a 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 overnight. Dinner at the hotel or in a restaurant nearby.


 

Day 5 - Wednesday:  PALERMO - MONREALE - MARSALA 

After breakfast in hotel, the morning will be spent visiting the capital of Sicily 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, including an elegant opera house! We will visit the wonderful Arab-Norman Cathedral, the astonishing Martorana Church and the amazing Cappella Palatina, mirable example from an 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 Bizantyne, Muslim and Latin workers. Continuing our walk we will admire the debated fountain in Pretoria Square, situated in the ancient Kalsa area and adorned with XVI century sculptures. Along the visiting day we will have a stop for a food surprise in the famous Antica Focacceria San Francesco. Free time for lunch. Later on we will proceed to Monreale to visit its huge Norman Cathedral, , and its splendid Cloister in Arab-Norman style: admirable masterpiece of art, sculpture, and semi-precious stones marquetry! In the afternoon we will continue to Marsala in whose port Garibaldi landed in 1860. Visit of a prestigious wine cellar and wine tasting. Dinner and overnight in hotel.



Day 6 - Thursday:  MARSALA - SELINUNTE - AGRIGENTO 
This morning the guided tour will continue along the charming and well-known Salt Road: the west coast of Sicily with many salt marshes, which have given rise to one of the oldest salt-extracting industries in the world. Between Trapani and Marsala they are now protected, in part because of the interesting birdlife, and also as important sites of industrial archaelogy. On the way you will see the nice Island of Mothia (situated at the centre of a large lagoon in Marsala, known today as ‘Stagnone‘), and the famous Salines and windmills. Departure to Selinunte to visit the largest Archaeological Park in whole Mediterranean and World Heritage Site! Surrounded by a splendid landscape near the African Sea, we will walk among the rests of the ancient Greek city. Free time for lunch. Transfer to Agrigento and visit of the Valley of the Temples stated World Heritage Site, where among hundreds of almond trees, the rests of the ancient Akragas rise.Once one of the most prosperous of the ancient Greek cities on the island, Agrigento presents a remarkable series of Doric Temples of the 5th century. You will see the “Temple of Hera”, the “Temple of Concordia” and the “Temple of Heracles”. Accommodation in hotel, dinner and overnight.
Day 7 - Friday:  PIAZZA ARMERINA - RAGUSA 
Proceeding on we will reach Piazza Armerina where we will admire the splendid polychrome mosaics of the famous Villa Romana del Casale, World Heritage Site. The complex, which has some of the most extensive and most beautiful Roman mosaics known, is a World Heritage Site. This majestic villa, belonged to a member of the Roman Senatorial aristocracy, hosts prestigious mosaics representing mythological and historical episodes and scenes of hunting and entertainments. After free time for lunch, departure to Ragusa Ibla and visit of its historical centre cradle of Sicilian baroque, with its Cathedral, situated in the beautiful square of the Dome and the “giardino Ibleo”. it is today stated among the 44 Italian World Heritage Sites. This little precious ancient city, , hosts more than 50 churches and many baroque architectural treasures. We’ll conclude the visiting day with a tasting of local products. Proceed to Catania for dinner and overnight in hotel.
Day 8 - Saturday:  CATANIA 

Breakfast in hotel and end of services

Itinerario

  1. Catania
  2. Siracusa
  3. Noto
  4. Etna
  5. Taormina
  6. Cefalù
  7. Palermo
  8. Marsala
  9. Selinunte
  10. Agrigento
  11. Piazza Armerina
  12. Ragusa
  13. Catania