Italy With Pleasure

Sicily Private Tour

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Price From:
From€2,500
Price From:
From€2,500

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Sicily has for many centuries soaked up influences from all over the Mediterranean, and these are the basis for the colorful and vibrant present day culture and cuisine. Our tour provides a well rounded experience covering the diverse aspects that the island offers – the lifestyle and culture of the people, with visits to markets and a farm; the art and architecture, seeing several Sicilian baroque towns and Arab-Norman styles. And of course the history, with visits to ancient Greek and Roman sites including Segesta and Agrigento. We enjoy long lunches, taking time over the multiple courses to enjoy the atmosphere and to relax.

This itinerary can be arranged at a time to suit you. We organise the guided visits and the activities, accommodation, and a driver to take you to all the destinations. We provide detailed information on the locations that are self guided. We also we provide on-call support, in English, both before and during the trip.

Our tours are a balance between being informative (examples of the culture and lifestyle, historical details) as well as having everything that makes for an enjoyable trip (long lunches in good restaurants, a relaxed pace). We plan the itinerary in the way that you would plan to travel yourself, or with a group of friends.

Highlights
Itinerary
Day 1 – Welcome to Sicily

You will be picked up at the airport and driven to central Palermo. This transfer and the other transport during this itinerary is for your travelling group only (no other passengers). Palermo has many layers of civilizations and history. The city today is a vibrant, living testimony to this cultural heritage. Your hotel is located right in the historic centre of town, so the vibrancy of this diverse city is all around you. Accommodation: either the Quintocanto Hotel, Hotel Massimo Plaza or the Eurostars Central Palace (all 4 star), Palermo

Day 2 – Palermo and Monreale

You will be met by a guide who has a depth of knowledge about all aspects of Palermo. First you will look at a series of sights that provide an insight into both Palermo and Sicily – the Quattro Canti, the fountain Fontana Pretoria, and the exteriors of the Arab-Norman churches of San Cataldo and the Martorana. Then our driver will pick you up and together you will travel to Monreale, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Monreale is on the outskirts of Palermo, a 30 minute drive. Start by visiting the cathedral at Monreale, with incredible golden mosaics. It is said to be one of the finest Norman buildings in the world. Go on to visit the cloisters at Monreale, a particularly evocative setting lined with marble columns and inlaid stone. On returning to central Palermo you will bid farewell to your guide. You have the afternoon to explore central Palermo indepenndently. There are many things to see and taste, we will provide details on how to make the best use of your time. Accommodation: either the Quintocanto Hotel, Hotel Massimo Plaza or the Eurostars Central Palace (all 4 star), Palermo 

Day 3 - Agrigento

Today depart from Palermo and travel first to Agrigento, with its famous ‘Valley of the Temples’. This UNESCO World Heritage site features the beautiful Temple of Concordia and is one of the most photogenic spots in Sicily. You will be shown around by an expert guide, who explains to us the phases of civilisation here, as well as the current discoveries that are being made. Strolling through the archaeological area gives a sense of the gravitas of history, as well as a pleasant experience of continued traditions, surrounded by almond groves and olive trees. After lunch continue on to your hotel in the town of Ragusa, arriving in the early evening. Ragusa is one of the best examples of the Sicilian baroque style, with ornate edifices and intricate detailing. Accommodation: Ragusa – San Giorgio Palace Hotel / Hotel Itria Palace / Hotel Antico Convento (all 4 star hotels) 

Day 4 – Ragusa and Modica

You will be driven to spend the morning in the nearby town of Modica. While Modica is one of Sicily’s famed baroque towns, here we also have an ulterior motive, and that is chocolate. Modica is an important centre for chocolate making, and has its own distinctive style known as ‘cioccolato modicano’. This is made using a different production method to regular chocolate, based on Aztec techniques brought in during the period of Spanish rule. We organise for you a demonstration of the production of this chocolate and a tasting. There are a range of features to see and do in Modica, such as the church of San Giorgio, ancient frescoes, and simply enjoying the atmosphere of this elegant town. We will provide details for what to see and do. You will return to Ragusa around lunchtime, and you’ll have the afternoon free to be charmed by the elegant palazzos and the picturesque winding streets. We suggest you follow our ‘Sicilian Baroque Ragusa Walking Route’, which reveals many elements of this distinctive architectural style. Some of Sicily’s architectural gems are scattered through Ragusa. The buildings we see in this style were built from 1693 onwards, and feature elegant balconies and balustrades. Accommodation: Ragusa – San Giorgio Palace Hotel / Hotel Itria Palace / Hotel Antico Convento (all 4 star hotels) 

Day 5 – Siracusa

Today you will be driven to Siracusa, a treasure trove of ancient palazzi, a fascinating old centre, and many harbourside restaurants where good living comes first. The old town of Siracusa is the island of Ortigia, the heart of Siracusa, with the remains of the ancient Greek city. First walk through the Ortigia markets. Here the particular speciality is seafood, with the fishing fleet heading out from the adjacent port and bringing the fresh catch here each morning – the huge swordfish are an impressive sight. It is in places like markets that you really get a good feel for the people and the lifestyle of Sicily. Go on to visit the Duomo (the main church), elegant and domineering in the beautiful central piazza. This church has an intriguing history, going right back to its origin as the Greek Temple of Athena. We still see the ancient Greek columns forming part of the structure of the current church. You time in Siracusa is self guided, we will provide details of what to see in the morning, and our lunch recommendations. If you choose to you can spend time first at the Siracusa Archaeological Area, with the Greek theatre and numerous ancient sites. This is on the outskirts of Siracusa, and following a visit there you will be driven on to Ortigia, the central area. Accommodation: Grande Albergo Alfeo (4 star), Siracusa

Day 6 – Taormina

In the morning your driver will pick you up and take you along the coast to your next destination, the town of Taormina. Start with a guided walk through Taormina, finishing with a visit to the ancient theatre, built first by the Greeks, and enlarged by the Romans. This theatre continues to be a premier location for performances in the present day. Now that you’ve been shown around the town with your guide, you have the rest of the day to yourselves. Taormina offers a range of possibilities for your day. Taormina is like visiting an elegant film set, such is the combination of spectacular views (over the sea and Mt Etna), beautiful old buildings, plus a touch of the ancient (both Greek and Roman). You can also take the cable car from Taormina down to the beach below the town, and the island Isola Bella. Around town, as well as the archaeological sites, there are numerous ceramics shops and cafes on the piazza. Accommodation: Grande Albergo Alfeo (4 star), Siracusa 

Day 7 – Arrivederci

We organise transport for you to your departure point in Catania and bid you “buon viaggio”.

Accommodation
There are 3 accommodation options for this tour itinerary

The hotels we use for this tour are good quality hotels and all are centrally located in Palermo, Ragusa and Siracusa. This makes it easy for you to spend time independently discovering these wonderful places. All of the hotels we use are 4 star rated.

In Palermo we stay in either the Hotel Quintocanto, Hotel Massimo Plaza or the Eurostars Central Palace. These hotels are all conveniently located right in the centre of Palermo, many of the key areas to see are in your neightbourhood.

In Ragusa we stay in the heart of the baroque historic centre of Ragusa Ibla, amongst the unique Sicilian baroque palazzi. Here we stay in either the San Giorgio Palace Hotel, Hotel Itria Palace, or the Hotel Antico Convento.

In Siracusa we stay at the Grande Albergo Alfeo, a short stroll from the old town of Siracusa called Ortigia.

If the listed hotels do not have availability for your dates we will book a similar hotel, on consultation with yourselves.

Cost and Inclusions
  • All Accommodation is includes breakfast.
  • All transport during the tour is included. Travel is with a professional driver and is solely for your party (no other passengers).
  • We provide transport to all the destinations as detailed in this ‘Itinerary – Sicily Private Tour’.
  • We include guided visits in Palermo / Monreale, Agrigento and Taormina.
  • In other locations that are self guided we provide information, maps and details of the place visited.

 

Sicily Private Itinerary (reference: SP6D) – Price: €2800

The price is per person, based on twin share. Italy With Pleasure provides on-call support for the duration of your time in Sicily. Support is in English.

Some entry fees must be paid in cash at the time of the visit, therefore are not included in the Sicily Private Tour package price (entrance fees to Monreale, Agrigento ‘Valley of the Temples’, Taormina’s ancient theatre).

Hotels have a city tax (“tassa di soggiorno”) that is required to be paid at the time of your visit – not included in this tour price, approx. €2-5 per person per night.

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