Tour Dates:
September 27 - October 10, 2024

$7,500; Early Bird Pricing - $7,300 before May 15

Relax by the sea in tranquil Cefalu, wander through charming Oritigia and Siracusa, explore ancient ruins in the vast Valley of the Temples, sample delicious Sicilian cuisine in bustling Palermo, sip wine straight from the vineyards surrounding smoldering Mt. Etna – The things to do in Sicily are endless!

DAY 1 – September 27: DEPART U.S. to Palermo

DAY 2 –September 28

(2 Nights in Cefalù)

Arrive in Palermo and transfer to Cefalù. 

Our main destination is Cefalù, a seaside historic town, known for its Norman cathedral, a 12th-century fortress-like structure with elaborate Byzantine mosaics. Relaxing in this picturesque little city is easy with the dramatic backdrop of the Tyrrhenian Sea and its reputation for beautiful sunsets and unpretentious charm. 

Cefalù has been a favorite location for movies and commercials since the 60s.  A walking tour through  the historic city center offers the following attractions: the marina (old fishing port); the ancient wash house; the medieval gate along Vittorio Emanuele Street; and via Bordonaro with its old houses and little shops selling crafts, coral and hard stone jewelry, and antiques. Also, fine local foods such as fresh baked bread, biscotti, manna, and dried fruits are available. 

The main square Piazza Duomo is the perfect place for photography. Here, you can lose yourself in the scene of an archetypal Sicilian square where tourists mix with locals relaxing at the cafés. Stop at a coffee shop to taste a cappuccino or an espresso accompanied by local cookies. Don’t forget to sample the delicious ice cream or a refreshing granite (Sicilian style sorbet). Cafés also serve appetizers and wine in case a more substantial treat is desired. 

Nest, visit the grandiose Cathedral. Dating back to the 12th century and a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2015, it is famous for its mosaic of Jesus the Savior and the Almighty. Walk down the main street of Corso Ruggero and make a short detour to see the secret part of the old town at the foot of the imposing La Rocca. 

Lunch is at leisure. Return to the hotel. 

Overnight at 5-star luxury hotel in Cefalù


DAY 3 – September 29: CEFALU

Meet your guide and drive to Castelbuono, a charming medieval town on the Madonie Mountains. Enjoy a walking tour through the historical city center and admire the medieval castle. 

Lunch and afternoon at leisure in Cefalù. (B)

Overnight at 5-star luxury hotel in Cefalù


DAY 4 – September 30: Catania

(3 Nights in Catania)

Breakfast at the hotel.

Boat tour of Catania and Cyclops Coast Tour
3.30 p.m. – 7:30 pm After lunch, transfer to Catania Port for a half-day boat tour of Catania and Cyclops Coast by Caicco with stops for snorkeling and swimming, weather permitting.

Transfer back to the hotel. (B)

Overnight at 4-star boutique hotel in Catania



Breakfast at the hotel. 

Full-day tour of Taormina, Savoca and Forza D’Agrò 

After breakfast, a tour of Taormina, including the ancient Greek theatre that is still in use today, followed by a tasting of Sicily’s traditional cannoli before a short drive to Savoca and Forza D’Agrò. You may recognize these little towns if you have seen The Godfather, especially at the Castello degli Schiavi, a scene location in the film, and during our private tour with the Barone Platania.

Overnight at 4-star boutique hotel in Catania


Day 6 – October 2: MT. ETNA 

The best way to experience Sicily’s largest and most active volcano is on a jeep tour. Mt. Etna is credited with providing the rugged backdrop and the fertile soil for the many surrounding wineries. 

Enjoy a walk around the volcano before riding up the northern side of Mt. Etna to a lovely winery for tastings and a light lunch. (B, L)

Overnight at 4-star boutique hotel in Catania


Day 7 – October 3: Siracusa and Ortigia

(2 nights Ortigia) 

After breakfast at the hotel, check out and drive to Siracusa and have an afternoon guided walking tour of Ortigia.

Overnight at 4-star boutique hotel in Siracusa


Day 8 – October 4: Siracusa and Ortigia

Breakfast at the hotel.

In the morning, visit at leisure to the Archaeological Park of Syracuse. The archaeological site, situated in the northwest of the town, is home to a staggering number of well-preserved Greek and Roman ruins and artifacts. The main attraction is undoubtedly the Greek theatre that dates back to the 5th Century BC. Its cavea is amongst the largest ever built with 59 rows that could accommodate up to 15,000 spectators. (B)

Overnight at 4-star boutique hotel in Siracusa


Day 9 – October 5: Agrigento and the Valley of the Temples

Pick up and leave to the Valley of the Temples.

Enjoy a private tour and picnic lunch at Diodoro Garden.

Overnight at 4-star boutique hotel in Agrigento


Day 10 – October 6: S. Angela Muxaro

Our day to experience, “La Dolce Vita,” just like the Sicilians.  

After a drive to S. Angelo Muxaro, a small village with an ancient history, overlooking the Platani river valley, our tour begins with a walk along the picturesque village lanes. We stop to taste cheese produced daily by a local family and to visit a bakery to sample “pani cunzatu” (bread with local olive oil and pepper), almond cookies and honey. This is one of the oldest bakeries in Sicily, which still uses a woodfire oven to prepare fresh bread every day for locals. 

Next, we purchase ingredients for your pizza making class at Fontes Episcopi in the late afternoon.

Private wood-oven cooking class

In Sicily, the wood oven has always been an important element of community. In Sicilian the verb “Famiare” means to light a big flame in the oven until the top turns white. That’s the sign the oven is ready. Our class will prepare “cuddirunedda”, or “hard wheat flour little pizzas,” where you indent the dough with your fingers to allow the olive oil to settle in. These are seasoned with spiced tomato sauce, garlic, anchovies and grated pecorino. Guests participate in the various phases, from the preparation and rolling of the dough, to the seasoning and baking. (B,L,D)

Overnight at 4-star boutique hotel in Agrigento


DAY 11 – October 7: Segesta and Erice

Breakfast at the hotel in Agrigento. 

Check out and travel to Palermo. 

On the way, a stop at Segesta, site of a majestic temple ruin, amphitheater and archaeological area. Probably founded by the Elymians who came from Asia Minor and settled in Western Sicily at the end of the second millennium B.C., Segesta’s architectural style was later influenced by Greeks, Romans, and Muslims.

Next, Erice, a wonderfully preserved medieval town in the northwest of Sicily, at the top of Monte San Giuliano. The town overlooks the city of Trapani and offers a breath-taking view of the lower western coast towards the Egadi Islands, where sea salt is made. On a clear day, the African coast is visible. After a visit to the Norman Castle and the Duomo, stroll through the cobblestoned streets fragrant with the aromas of baking from the numerous pastry shops for which Erice is known. The walking tour ends with a must-stop to visit Maria Grammatico’s Pastry Shop to taste a variety of sweets. 

Lunch is at leisure.

Continue on to Palermo.

Overnight at 4-star boutique hotel in Palermo


DAY 12 – October 8: PALERMO

Palermo, the capital of Sicily. Breakfast at the hotel.

Today, we begin in Palermo’s multi-ethnic markets, the meeting places of cultures, foods, aromas, and colors. They are centers for the city’s famous street food and accessed through the ancient gates of the city. Later, a tour of the cathedral and the magnificent Pretoria Fountain. 

Optional transfer to the beach at Mondello included in the afternoon.

For dinner, choose from any number of trattorias located near our hotel.


Overnight at 4-star boutique hotel in Palermo

DAY 13 – October 9: PALERMO

Depart in the afternoon for a relaxing tour of nearby picturesque Monreale. Tour the great cathedral and stroll the cloisters of the Benedictine monastery, known for its mosaics and Norman architecture that dates back to the 12th century. Return to the hotel and enjoy an evening at leisure with dinner of your choice from the many nearby cafes. Here you will find local wines and Sicilian craft beers to accompany regional dishes and tastings of local cold cuts and cheeses, all prepared with fresh products. Sicilian cooking is known for its use of fresh and natural foods and ingredients coming straight from the island’s ecosystem.  Thank Mt. Etna’s rich, volcanic soil that helps produce many “super foods” such as extra virgin olive oil, fruits, legumes, vegetables, berries, tomatoes, artichokes, eggplant, garlic, figs, basil, etc. One-third of all organic farms in Italy are located in Sicily. (B)

Overnight at 4-star boutique hotel in Palermo


DAY 14 – Return to US

Early morning check-out and transfer to the airport in Palermo for flight back to the U.S. 

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