Duration: 8 days / 6 nights.
Experience the variety of this amazing island with its thousand-year old history, unique and incredible nature, lively and artistic cities, paradisiacal climate
We begin our discovery of the island with its largest city and capital: Palermo, a lively harbor city filled with sumptuous palaces built in a typical Mediterrean scenery. We will see the Norman prints in the Cathedral and the Palace before moving to Monreale, strongly characterized by the Abbey: symbol of the triumph of Christianity over the Islam. With its cathedral and adjoining cloister, this complex is among Sicily’s most important sights.
Today we will experience the variety of Sicily beginning from Castelbuono: among the Madonie mountains, we will visit the medieval castle with its chapel and splendid frescoes. We will then taste the local wine in the history steeped winery of S. Anastasia Abbey. A twist into the arabic period will be represented by our next stop: Cefalù. Mostly known for its beautiful beaches, the town houses structures dating back to the 12th century. We will admire the imposing buildings winding through the small streets of the historic district.
We get to Milazzo and within an hour by boat we reach the marvelous Aeolian island of Lipari, the largest of the archipelagos. We have now two options: enjoy the warm sun exploring the island’s streets, or pay a visit to the museum, located directly on the harbor. After a bus tour around the island to discover its fascinating vegetation, We will continue on by boat to Vulcano, a natural paradise made of inviting waters, black lava beach and fango baths. Here we will have time to hike on the top of the crater or to enjoy the thermal water with a plunge at the close beach.
Today we move south, our destination is Agrigento. We just cannot miss its archeological area, UNESCO World heritage site: a complex of magnificent temple, described by the Greek poet Pindar as “the most beautiful city of mortals”. Another breathtaking site is our next stop: in Villa Casale we will admire the almost 38.000 sq ft of floor mosaic with mythological motifs, hunting and circus scenes of wealthy Romans as well as the famous “bikini girls”.
Today’s excursion is Mt. Etna, Europe’s highest active volcano. We will walk to the Silvestri craters and the lava streams of 1983 and 2001 at a height of ca. 1,900 m. (The continued journey to an altitude of ca. 3,000 m with all-terrain vehicles depends on the weather.) In the afternoon we will visit Taormina, which is surrounded by an overwhelming setting of rocks, gardens and sea. Taormina’s most famous structure is the Greek-Roman Theatre, from which one has a spectacular view of the sea and Mt. Etna.
Today we visit Syracuse, one of the most important cities of ancient Greece. We will wander through the narrow, winding streets of the Ortigia Peninsula, the historical centre of Syracuse. Our guided tour of the archaeological excavation site brings us to the beautiful Greek amphitheatre and the ‘Ear of Dionysius’. On the return journey we will become acquainted with the lively and colourful city of Catania. Monuments from antiquity and fanciful Baroque buildings characterize the cityscape. We will see the Norman-Baroque cathedral with the Elephant Fountain, we will stroll through the fish market and along picturesque market streets to the Hohenstaufen Castello Ursino. Last, we will see the Greek theatre with the Roman Odeon and we will eventually reach the unfinished Baroque facade of S.Nicolo.
Check out in Hotel and transfer to airport