Start: Palermo Finish: Catania
Special diets catered: Vegetarians, Please contact Back-Roads with any specific dietary requirements
Tour code: BEHSSPC-1
Tour operated in:
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Prepare to be unwrapped by Sicily’s superb landscapes, intoxicating diversity and ancient wonders. Centuries-old monasteries and Norman churches. Ancient Greek temples and bustling local markets. Sheer gorges and golden beaches. This dazzling Mediterranean island will tantalise your every desire and capture your heart with its fascinating culture.
Accommodation: Grand Hotel Piazza Borsa (or similar)
An intoxicatingly vibrant capital, Palermo is where we’ll meet for the start of our incredible Sicilian journey. Our included dinner tonight is an opportunity to get to know one another better and sample some of Sicily’s sumptuous cuisine. Here’s to the fantastic trip ahead!
Accommodation: Agriturismo Case di Latomie (or similar)
This morning we’ll take to the streets to dive into Palermo’s fascinating anti-Mafia movement with a local guide – visiting the house of anti-Mafia magistrate Paolo Borsellino, as we go. Then: it’s onwards to Monreale. Perched atop the Monte Caputo, overlooking the fertile valley of La Conca d’Oro – Monreale is renowned for its awe-inspiring Cathedral. Here, we’ll spend some time admiring the Norman-Byzantine architecture and stunning mosaics, before moving on to our idyllic accommodation in Selinunte.
Accommodation: The Alba Palace Hotel (or similar)
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
This morning, we're in for a culinary treat: prepare to sample a local farm’s tasty olives, award-winning oil and fresh breads. Then: en route to Favara, we’ll stop by Mazara del Vallo to indulge in a delicious antipasti lunch that explores the Arabic influence on Sicilian cuisine. Appetites sufficiently quenched, we’ll continue to the historic fishing port of Sciacca. Dating back to the ancient Greek period, Sciacca has been known for its natural thermal springs and ceramics. Here, we’ll have the opportunity to visit a local ceramic workshop and enjoy some free time to explore – before moving on to our hotel in Favara.
After breakfast we'll move on to Agrigento to visit the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Valley of Temples. As one of the most impressive collections of ancient Greek monuments in the world - a local guide will reveal the history of this enchanting archaeological site. Then: the ancient history lesson continues with a visit to Piazza Armerina's Villa Romana del Casale - which contains one of the largest collections of Roman mosaics in the world. We'll end our day in the magnificent hilltop town of Ragusa, where our idyllic accommodation in the historic town centre of Ibla, awaits.
We'll start our day in indulgent style: with a chocolate tasting session in Modica. And then? The gastronomic theme continues as we venture into the countryside for a fascinating lesson in cheese-making. We'll gain a unique insight into the rustic lifestyle of Sicilian shepherds from a local breeder - and learn the secrets behind creating the area's famed provola ragusana cheese. After a delicious tasting session and included lunch, we'll return to Ragusa - where the rest of the day is free to wander the sloping alleyways and historic Ragusa Ibla at our leisure.
Accommodation: Caportigia Boutique Hotel (or similar)
On today’s agenda: a visit to the city of Noto, where we’ll learn more about almond cultivation with a local expert. After indulging in an almond themed lunch, we’ll press on to lovely Syracuse. Here, a local guide will take us around the ancient archaeological park – home to the impressive Teatro Greco. This evening, we’ll enjoy some free time relaxing at our hotel or exploring the nearby Ortigia area – Syracuse’s ancient town centre.
Coastal Syracuse – which rivalled Athens as the most important city of ancient Greece – is yours for the taking today. We recommend arranging a boat trip to visit the enchanting hidden caves here. Or spending your free time wandering the array of ancient temples before losing yourself in the city’s winding streets – opening onto magnificent baroque piazzas, enticing boutique storefronts and beautiful sea views. How you spend your day is up to you – but a visit to the stunning Piazza Duomo is a must!
Accommodation: Donna Carmela Boutique Resort (or similar)
Today we head towards Mt Etna, a slumbering giant that towers over the rugged surrounding landscape. We’ll take in the views from Rifugio Sapienza and have an opportunity to ride the cable car for a closer look at its smouldering craters. Then: we’ll move on to a local winery for an indulgent lunch and wine pairing experience. Later, our journey continues to the regional village of Carruba – where we’ll spend the next two nights.
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Today will be spent exploring the spectacular mountainside town of Taormina. Here, we will have plenty of time to indulge in some Sicilian dolce vita – but first: a guided visit to the dramatically situated ancient Greek theatre is in order. After a day spent exploring, tonight’s farewell dinner will be well-deserved.
Today, our tour will end in Catania – but not before a walking tour of the ancient port city. With an included visit to the city’s famous fish market, where you’ll have the opportunity to soak up the enthralling atmosphere. We’ll even pass by Catania’s oldest cannolo shop, where we’ll have the chance to fill our own cannoli with ricotta cheese. What a way to round off the trip!
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Experienced Back-Roads Tour Leader and Driver
9 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 2 dinners
9 nights in hand-picked accommodation
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Back-Roads Touring requires a deposit of
to secure a place on this tour, and the final balance is not due till 60 days before departure..
Back-Roads Touring allows you to make 10 free date changes, as long as the change is made at least 60 days before the start of the tour.
Back-Roads Touring allows you to transfer existing payments to a future tour to avoid cancellation fees if you can't travel and inform Back-Roads Touring, 60 days before departure.
If you need to cancel your tour, here is a summary of Back-Roads Touring charges.
All payments to TourHub are deposited into an externally regulated Trust account.
We have our COVID Assurance Policy
Upon final payments, we will distribute E-Documentation to all of our guests. Dont forget we also have our App to download as an added feature.
Like-minded travellers awaiting the opportunity to explore the less explored regions. Interests in food, wine, history, art as well as wartimes there will be a great mix of people to connect with on tour.
You need to be fit enough to get on and off the vehicle on a regular basis, and to walk both to attractions and around towns and villages.
You also need to be able to walk up and down stairs in the hotels and use a shower over the bath. We frequently use traditional style hotels and the majority will not have lifts or ground floor rooms.
The majority of our guests come from Canada, the USA, the UK, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. All tour commentaries are in English.
Our tours appeal to those looking for a more relaxing style of travel, and who enjoy culture, good food, meeting like-minded people and exploring destinations in depth.
All Hotels in line with protocols following the World Health Organisation meet and exceed requirements for all Touring with us.
Back-Roads Touring has been operating from the UK for over 30 years
Inline with our booking flexibility policy, you are able to make as many changes as required up to 60 days from departue - with 1 last included up until 30 days out.
Multiple Room Types
Multiple room types available. Choose your preferred room type when you book.