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8 Days A Love of a Lifetime Culinary Holiday in Sicily, Italy

Palermo, Italy

Sicily Culinary Vacations in Italy

This vacation will allow you to immerse in the delicious local food and fine wines of Sicily, while having a unique travel experience, enjoying the breathtaking sights of this beautiful island. You will have the opportunity to explore different historic and natural sites, and discover the culture and traditions of the country. After this vacation, you will leave the island having fallen in love with the Sicilians, their cuisine, and the beauty of the place.

Highlights

  • Venture in the open market of Palermo for a street food taste
  • Guided visits to renowned wine cellars, as well as wine tastings and pairings
  • Travel to the Greek Valley of Temples, and enjoy a picnic lunch at the Kolymbetra park
  • Visit and tour Castelbuono, as well as Cefalù, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Explore Syracuse and Etna strewn with vineyards - famous for wine making
  • Breakfasts at the hotel, as well as authentic lunches, dinners, and aperitif
  • Transfers by a private car for the whole tour, including airport transfers
  • 7 nights accommodation in four-star hotels

Styles


7 days with instruction
Group size: Minimum of 2 participants
Airport transfer included: Falcone–Borsellino Airport
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Accommodation

During your holiday, you will be staying at charming 4-star hotels along the tour, as follow:

  • Night 1 and 2: Palermo - Hotel Quinto Canto 4* / Federico II 4* / Centrale Palace 4* or similar
  • Night 3: Marsala - Hotel Via Con il vento 4* / Baglio Oneto 4* sup or similar
  • Night 4: Syracuse - Hotel Royal Maniace 4* / Hotel Roma 4* or similar
  • Night 5 and 6: Taormina - Hotel Villa Diodoro 4* / Hotel Excelsior 4* or similar
  • Night 7: Cefalu - Hotel Ossuna Bay 4* / Sea Palace 4* / Artemis 4* or similar

Program

Day 1: Palermo

  • Meals included: dinner

Arrival at Palermo airport. There will be a free transfer to the hotel. Check in at your charming four-star centrally located hotel, where your welcome cocktail already awaits. Meet your guide for an introduction to the tour.

Enjoy your welcome dinner in an elegant setting in central Palermo with the most refined Sicilian cuisine. It will be a restaurant where you will have a unique dining experience. After dinner, go on a panoramic tour of Palermo by night. Return to the hotel and retire for the night.

Day 2: Palermo street food and culture

  • Meals included: breakfast and street food

Morning

Your morning today will be spent with a special walking tour of Palermo dedicated to enjoy street food. It will be a three-hour walking tour where you will sample the best of Sicily’s street food, led by a local expert guide. Explore the fascinating culinary world of Sicily’s capital.

You will visit the famous and bustling Vucciria and Mercato del Capo, outdoor markets, tasting five different Sicilian treats along the way - including “panelle” (chickpea fritters) and arancine (deep-fried rice balls). Pass major Palermo monuments during the tour: Palermo Arabo-Normanna and Palermo Barocca. Round out your tour with some local sweet wine and seasonal dessert.

Afternoon

In the afternoon, travel to Monreale the Norman “Mons Regalis”. The majestic dome was founded in the 12th century by the Norman king, William II. It is 6,340 square meters of polychrome and gold mosaics, and the access to the Benedictine cloister making it one of the most magnificent testimonies of the Norman conquest of Sicily. Back to the hotel. Dinner on your own. Creative Sicilian dishes will be served between strings and retro furnishings in an intimate and elegant setting. Overnight.

Day 3: Erice - Marsala: Between wines and pastry

  • Meals included: breakfast, brunch, and aperitif

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and check out. Then, transfer to Erice, a magnificent village nestled in a picturesque setting that rests untouched from medieval times, and where guests will visit its ancient churches and rich historic city center. Visit to the Antique Convent Pastry Shop, one of the most renowned Sicilian bakeries. There, enjoy a taste of the fine Erician pastries first created within the convent walls and, as a special treat, sample some of the typical almond dough desserts filled with candied lemon.

Next, transfer to Marsala, a city famous for the production of its namesake wine. Stop in Florio winery. Do not miss the delicious wines. Guided tasting of four wines in the charming “sala delle botti” combined with bread, olives, tuna, arancini, focacce, and local cheeses. Check in at the hotel for rest and relaxation. And now, you are ready for a pleasant evening. In front of one of the most peculiar landscape of Sicily: the Stagnone di Marsala, you will have an aperitif in a charming place overlooking the saltpans during sunset. Retire for the night.

Day 4: Agrigento - Syracuse: A dip between nature and history

  • Meals included: breakfast and picnic lunch

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and check out. Then, transfer to Agrigento. Your morning will be dedicated to the visit of Agrigento, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1998 and one of the most symbolic remnants of classical Greek civilization. Accompanied by a guide, you will experience the same sensations as they did, admiring the Temple of Juno and the grandiose Temple of Corcord, which will amaze you for its sheer size, harmonious architecture and perfect state of preservation.

Indulge in a picnic lunch at the Kolymbetra park, an agricultural jewel returned to light after decades of abandon. This garden has fruit trees from every part of the world and some of the trees are over 1,000 years old!

Then, surrounded by pomegranate, pistachio, orange, and lemon trees, and under the Mediterranean sun, you will enjoy a typical Sicilian lunch served to you outdoors, complete with local fruit, cheese, and wine. This will be surely one of the highlights of your trip. Transfer to Syracuse, city with colorful history and beautiful landscape. Check in at your charming and unique hotel four-star hotel.

Day 5: Syracuse and Taormina: Beauty and dolce vita

  • Meals included: breakfast and dinner

Enjoy your breakfast at the hotel and check out. Your morning will be dedicated to Syracuse, a prominent ancient Greek settlement in Italy. Visit the archaeological zone: the Greek Theater, the Roman Amphitheater, the Ear of Dyonisus, and the Latomie.

Stroll through the historical center on the Ortigia island to admire the Cathedral, the Aretusa fountain and the ancient streets. Time for shopping. Lunch on your own. Transfer to Taormina with a stopping in Fiumefreddo for a visit to the ancestral home of the notorious Corleone family at the heart of Francis Ford Coppola’s classic nine-hour cinematic: the “Castello degli Schiavi”, the house of Don Corleone. This beautiful looking residence was built in 1,700 as a country house for the nobility.

The house was location for several scenes throughout the Godfather films including the un-intentional murder of Apollonia in the Godfather and also the brutal revenge Killing of Don Ciccio, by Vito Corleone in Godfather part II. Walk into the castle and meet the owner that will introduce you to the aim of the film. Continue to Taormina. Check in at the hotel. Dinner in a local restaurant. Stay overnight.

Day 6: Etna - Taormina: Between sky and fire

  • Meals included: breakfast and lunch

After breakfast, you will depart for your “Special morning on Mount Etna”, one of Sicily by Experts' unique excursion in a private jeep. You will see the highest active volcano in Europe. Discover many habitats and beautiful scenery, characteristic villages at its slopes and, of course, the terrific power of the nature.

Following your excursion, you will continue your drive to an ancient estate located on the slopes of the volcano Etna. The farm, which belongs to a noble family, is surrounded by extensive vineyards and has a panoramic view of both Mount Etna and the sea. Mount Etna is the highest volcano in Europe. The climate and the volcanic soil help give wines a unique mineral taste typical of the region around Mount Etna.

Proceed with a wine tasting and guided visit to the wine cellar with a member of the family. Lunch at the farm. Back to Taormina to spend the afternoon at leisure in this beautiful spot, which offers also historical and cultural attractions, such as the Greek Theater, used as stage for many important international events.

You can also admire the various buildings in Corso Umberto, the main road that in the summer evenings is always crowded and just in the middle it widens on a belvedere, with an unforgettable view on the whole bay. Dinner on your own. Overnight in Taormina.

Day 7: Castelbuono - Cefalu

  • Meals included: breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Start your morning with a breakfast at the hotel and check out. Departure to Castelbuono, a nice village at 20 minutes from Cefalù. Have a walking tour of the village and stop in a very know pastry to taste the famous “pistachos’s panettone”. Have a lunch in a typical restaurant (based on mushrooms and asparagus). Then, stop in a particular place, Abbazia Santa Anastasia, a former Benedictine abbey built in the twelfth century in the hills high above the north coast.

The medieval abbey or abbazia is steeped in a natural landscape so extraordinary that the present owner, entrepreneur Francesco Lena, originally purchased the land to turn the estate into a holiday resort. Instead, he began experimenting with international varietals such as Syrah, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon, as well as the indigenous Nero d’Avola. Continue to Cefalù. Check in at your hotel.

Visit this picturesque medieval town dominated by the gold-colored cathedral, a Romanesque jewel built by the Norman king Roger II. The interior is decorated with fabulous mosaics executed in a spectacular array of colors on a gold background. Walk through the small streets of the historical city center. The old roman lavatory can be seen here as a testimony of the strong ancient Roman presence here. Farewell dinner in a restaurant overlooking the sea. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 8: Palermo airport: Departure

  • Meals included: breakfast

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel. It is time to say goodbye. Transfer to Palermo airport for your return flight. See you at the next “Sicily By Experts” tour to explore another corner of the island.

Included excursions

  • Venture in the open market of Palermo for a street food taste
  • Walk in the medieval street of Erice, pausing at the enchanting Stagnone di Masala to joy its colorful sunset
  • Travel into the history in the Greek Valley of Temples, making a stop in the Kolymbetra park for an authentic picnic
  • Spend time exploring Syracuse area and also Etna strewn with vineyards and famous for its wine making
  • Meet a local story teller who introduces you to the area’s renowned castles near Taormina
  • Explore a nice wine cellar known as Abbazia Santa Anastasia
  • Spend time at the regal and today's UNESCO site, city of Cefalù

Location

Food

In this vacation, you will taste the Sicilian flavor with daily breakfast, and eight special meals in typical restaurants and authentic places. Among the delicious dishes that you will try, you will find the famous pistachio panettone and the fine Erician pastries. Wine will also be present and you will be delighted with guided tastings paired with local produce.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

Things to do (optional)

You will have plenty of opportunities to dine at local restaurants and get to know the surroundings at your own pace.

What's included

  • 7 nights accommodation in four-star hotels
  • 7 daily breakfast
  • Transportation by a private car or minivan for the whole tour
  • English speaking driver-courier for the whole tour
  • 8 special meals in typical restaurants and original places as per itinerary
  • Local guides in Palermo, Agrigento, and Syracuse
  • All taxes for services included in itinerary

What's not included

  • Airfare
  • The optional excursions
  • Drinks during the meals (except the ones mentioned)
  • Meals not mentioned
  • Entrance fees in the monuments and museums
  • Everything not mentioned in the list of inclusions
  • Tips and personal expenses

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at Falcone-Borsellino Airport (PMO). Sicily By Experts di Fransicile will pick you up from the airport. The pick-up is included in the price.

Airport: Falcone–Borsellino Airport Airport transfer included: Falcone–Borsellino Airport No additional charges. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 30% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 30 days before arrival.
8 days / 7 nights
from --
Minimum group size

This trip requires a minimum number of 2 participants

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