Living Sicily – 2019
This relaxed itinerary explores two of Sicily’s most evocative towns; Siracusa and Taormina, and includes major highlights in the surrounding areas.
Siracusa > Ortigia > Noto > Catania > Taormina > Mt Etna > Taormina > Catania
Day 1 Sunday Includes Aperitivi and Dinner, overnight Ortigia, Siracusa
The tour begins in Siracusa at the accommodation where we will meet in the lounge then walk out for aperitivi and dinner including an introductory talk in the warm open air of the piazza with a direct view of the spectacular Duomo lit by the last rays of the sun.
Ortigia markets and Ortigia
Day 2 Monday Includes Breakfast, Lunch and Aperitivi, overnight Ortigia
The day begins with an exploration the historical centre of Ortigia including the spectacular cathedral once a temple to Athena. The massive columns of the original Greek temple are clearly visible in the exterior wall with the Baroque facade added in the 18th century. For lunch we stroll to the brilliantly colourful markets near the ruins of the temple of Apollo by the port, where we have tastings of some local specialities.
In the late afternoon we take a short drive to the Greek theatre where performances of ancient Greek playwrights are still regularly performed. Afternoon aperitivi are included. There is free time for dinner unless you choose to join us.
*In May and June a live performance of an ancient Greek play will be offered. Charges apply.
Noto, Villa Tellaro, Pupi theatre and Mikvah
Day 3 Includes Breakfast and Aperitivi, overnight Ortigia
We drive to Noto and while enjoying the Baroque urban centre we include a taste of the best cannoli and coffee of the area. Villa Tellaro is a roman villa with mosaics representing a scene with Hector, Odysseus and Achilles, identified by inscriptions in ancient Greek.
In the afternoon we see a performance of medieval warfare by the very characteristic local Pupi – traditional Sicilian puppets. There are also visits to an ancient Jewish mikveh ritual baths several levels underground, and the fountain of Arethusa, the setting of a delightful myth of desire and deception.
Catania and Transfer to Taormina
Day 4 Includes Breakfast and Dinner, overnight in Taormina
A late start so you have time to revisit the markets & shops of Ortigia or have a swim in the sea before we transfer to Taormina. We stop in Catania to visit the fish markets, the historical centre of town and lunch. This afternoon we settle into our new accommodation for 3 nights, a small family run elegant accommodation in the historical centre of Taormina and overlooking the sea.
Day 5 Includes Breakfast, overnight in Taormina
Guided tour of Taormina including the Greek / Roman theatre, then free time to explore the streets and shops of this fascinating small town.
Etna and Wine tasting
Day 6 Includes Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner, overnight in Taormina
The drive up the mountain takes us through picturesque villages and a landscape of vineyards, orange and lemon groves, Mediterranean flora and finally the barren moonscape of the craters at the top. Mount Etna is a feature of the landscape from many points in Sicily. We have the services of a local vulcanologist with us for the day, and we stop for lunch and a wine tasting at a local Sicilian family wine estate.
Departure from Catania Airport
Day 7 Includes Breakfast
Transport to Catania Airport is 1.5 hours if there are no problems. Strategically avoiding peak hour, we are aiming for a 10AM departure from Taormina with an anticipated arrival time at the airport by 12 midday approx which is in time for any afternoon National flights departing after 1PM or International flights departing after 3PM.
- Sun 07, Sat 13 Apr
- Sat 11, Fri 17 May
- Sun 16, Sat 22 Jun
- July – August dates on request +15% approx due to higher accommodation prices
- Sun 22, Sat 28 Sep
- Sun 13, Sat 19 Oct
- Sun 10, Sat 16 Nov
- Unpack in WATERVIEW ROOMS and settle in for relaxing outings
- The delights of Sicily’s most beautiful locations
- Visits to local markets
- A visit to the Pupi theatre and puppet makers
- An ancient Greek theatre performance in May & June* (ticket price not included) • Roman mosaics at Villa Tellaro
- The services of a vulcanologist on Mount Etna
- Small groups (max12) provide a better experience
- Spend more time in the towns & less time in transit
- Flexibility to adjust to local events
- A front seat to history in Sicily’s most beautiful hilltowns
Please contact us for additional pricing for optional extras.
*City Tax not included and must be paid directly at the hotel on check out