Gran Tour of Sicily Self-Drive
A Tour of Sicily by car including the best of the Island! An itinerary of 10 days / 9 nights to enjoy Sicily at your own pace.
1st Day: Arrival at Palermo
Arrival at the Palermo airport and car pick up at the rental office. Tour of Sicily by car starts here!
Free day available to visit the beautiful Sicilian capital, one of the most ancient cities in Sicily, a chest full of art and architecture treasures, that reflects its several dominations. Enjoy Sicilian cuisine, a very important element of the city, which reveals its ancient melting-pot.
Overnight in 4* hotel in Palermo. (accommodation only).
2nd Day: Discovering Palermo
The whole day will be spent visiting the hidden treasures of Palermo: the wonderful Arab-Norman Cathedral, the astonishing Chiesa della Martorana and the amazing Cappella Palatina inside Palazzo dei Normanni. And more… Chiesa di San Giovanni degli Eremiti, Casa Professa and Chiesa del Santissimo Salvatore.
During the afternoon you will proceed to Monreale, to visit its huge Norman Cathedral, proclaimed the Eighth Wonder of the World, and its splendid Cloister.
Later, you can enjoy a romantic walk in the Mondello seafront, a popular sea location close to the city, with beautiful Liberty-style villas, bars and restaurants where you can taste delicious sea food dishes. Overnight in Palermo. (accommodation only).
Option: full day guide in Palermo and Monreale.
3rd Day: Segesta ed Erice
Moving towards the extreme part of Western Sicily, it is worth a visit to Segesta and its extraordinary Temple Solitario, one of the best preserved Doric temples. Later you will be amazed by Erice, a charming Medieval village, on the summit of Monte San Giuliano, with its lovely alleys and craft shops.
Last but not least, the view of Trapani salt pans with its emblematic mills and the Salt Museum.
Do not forget to taste the typical sea food cous cous, a traditional Arab dish imported to Sicily.
Overnight in Marsala in a lovely hotel in the old town, a former XVIIth century monastery.
Option: guided tour of Segesta.
4th Day: Mothia island and Marsala
Sicily tour by car continues with the charming little island of Mothia. This ancient Phoenician colony, founded in the VIIIth century. B.C. is located in the centre of the Marsala Lagoon.
The XVIIIth century villa of Whitaker, in the centre of Mothia, houses several archaeological objects, found on the island, in Lilybaeum (Marsala) and in the necropolis of Birgi, in front of Mothia. Furthermore we suggest to visit “The House of Amphorae“, behind the museum.
Marsala well worth a visit during the afternoon, to see its artistic and architectural elements. It also has vivid colours: yellow tuff, blue sea, red sunset, white salt and green vineyard.
Overnight at hotel.
Option: guided tour and tasting in a wine cellar.
5th Day: Selinunte
The tour brings you in the ancient Greek city of Selinunte. You will be amazed by the enchanting landscape in front of the Mediterranean Sea where you can stroll among the ruins of ancient acropolis, located in the largest archaeological site in Europe!
Moving towards Agrigento, along the coast, we suggest to take a break at one of its sea village: Sciacca, Eraclea Minoa, Porto Empedocle.
Do not forget to taste the local recipes: sardines meatballs, fava beans soup and “stigghiole”.
If you’re in the mood for archeology, you will be enchanted by the beauty of Valley of the Temples in Agrigento, an UNESCO World Heritage Site. Overnight at hotel in Agrigento.
Option: guided tour of the archaeological sites in Selinunte and Valley of the Temples in Agrigento.
6th Day: Caltagirone and Ragusa
Today you will discover the ancient Roman mosaics in Piazza Armerina, located inside Villa Romana del Casale, an UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Caltagirone is a small city in the central Sicily, popular for its clay; it is known worldwide for handmade pottery, which are still committing hundreds of artisans.
In the afternoon, Ragusa one of the most important Sicilian Baroque city, reveals its beautiful churches and gardens. Ragusa owns 14 monuments which have been declared UNESCO World Heritage Site. Overnight in a former old beam, turned into a lovely 4 * hotel.
Option: Pottery workshop visit. Guided tour of Ragusa & Ragusa Ibla.
7th Day: Discovering Sicilian Baroque
Modica is a chest of countless Baroque architectural treasures, which are mostly part of Unesco World Heritage site.
Noto, known as the “garden of stone”, is the capital of Sicilian Baroque: its buildings are part of Unesco World Heritage Site. After tasting the delicious granita, we suggest you to visit Palazzo Nicolaci, wonderful noble residence, and all the stunning lanes in the city centre.
At the end of the day, Syracuse welcomes you. The most beautiful and great Greek colony in Sicily houses an important Archaeological Park, the small island of Ortigia with a beautiful white cathedral, splendid Fountain of Arethusa. Overnight in Syracuse in a 4* hotel.
Option: visit of a famous chocolate company. Here you can experience the ancient Aztecs production and tasting the “nectar of Gods”.
8th Day: Catania and the Cyclops Riviera.
The tour goes to Catania, whose city centre is a Unesco World Heritage Site.
Starting from the “Pescheria” (old fish market), you will reach the spectacular Piazza del Duomo, with its splendid Cathedral and the “Liotru”, the lava stone elephant and Piazza Università.
The walk approaches to the majestic Via Crociferi (Unesco World Heritage Site) with the famous Monastery of St. Benedict, made known by Verga’s novel “History of a Capinera”.
In the afternoon we suggest you to stroll along the picturesque Cyclops Riviera, so called because of the rocks which emerge from the sea; the legend tells that Polyphemus, after been blinded, thrown them against Ulysses.
We suggest that you to visit Aci Castello. This sea village, owes its name to its Norman Castle which gives a stunning view of the whole coast: lemon trees, agaves and palm trees enrich one of the most suggestive corners of East Sicily.
Option: guided tour of Catania.
9th Giorno: Etna and Taormina
Mount Etna is the highest active volcano in Europe and UNESCO World Heritage Site.
You can reach by car the Silvestri craters, inactive volcanic cones, dated back to 1888, which are surrounded by lava sediments. Along the way back, do not forget to visit the several local honey producers.
In the afternoon, we suggest that you visit the charming Taormina; the lovely Aeonian pearl, is popular for its natural landscape, beautiful sea, its ancient monuments and an unforgettable view of Etna! Make sure to see fascinating Greek Theater, the ancient Cathedral and Palazzo Corvaja.
Option: guided tour of Mount Etna with cable, 4×4 car and mountain guide.
10th Day: Check out
Departure to the airport, car drop-off and end of services.
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