During this Sicily and Malta Itinerary (11 days) from Catania to Valletta you will discover 2 amazing islands in the Mediterranean Sea: Sicily, the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea in southern Italy and Malta, an island country consisting of an archipelago in the Mediterranean Sea. In Sicily you will visit such impressive destinations as Catania, Syracuse, Noto, Ragusa, Modica, Piazza Armerina, Agrigento, Marsala, Palermo, Monreale, Cefalù, Etna, Taormina. In Malta you will discover Valletta, Mdina, Cottonera, Marsaxlokk, Blue Grotto and Dingli Cliffs. If you are a solo traveler willing to join a group, this tour also suits you as you can be accommodated in a single room (Single Room Supplement: 350 €). This is a fully guided group tour (also suitable for solo travellers) that starts in Catania every Saturday from March 9, 2024 to November 16, 2024.Group travel request form Join a group tour
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I am Valeria and I speak English, Spanish and French. My passion for travel and love for my land will let you discover Sicily and its treasures throughout extraordinary itineraries.
Discovery of the ancient history in Syracuse and the finest buildings of Sicilian baroque in NotoCatania - Syracuse - Noto - Ragusa
This day, starting in Catania, will continue with a visit to Syracuse, the most beautiful and greatest Greek colony in Sicily listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO! The guided tour begins with the visit of the Archaeological Park of Neapolis, the Greek Theatre, the Roman Amphitheatre, the Latomie of Paradise and the Ear of Dionysus. The city is also the birthplace of Archimedes, a leading mathematician and engineer. Syracuse was one of the Mediterranean's major powers in ancient times.
You will continue the tour by visiting the beautiful Ortigia, a small island that is Syracuse's historical centre. In Ortigia, you will admire the beautiful Cathedral that dominates the square with its authoritative presence. Its facade is a powerful Sicilian-Baroque composition, but it gives no hint that this building was once a Doric temple!
In the afternoon, you will have some free time for lunch. more
After lunch, you will travel to Noto, the capital of Sicilian Baroque, famous for its fine early 18th century buildings and declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Inspired by the Baroque ideals of "open city", Noto is famous for its fine early 18th century buildings, which are considered some of the finest examples of Sicilian Baroque style. In fact, Noto's Baroque is a game of elegant curves, floral weaves, palaces and gardens, capitals and decorations adorning the facades of churches and monasteries.You will visit Nicolaci Villadorata Palace, a beautiful Baroque noble residence, once the residence of Don Giacomo Nicolaci, a patron of the arts.
Departure to Ragusa. Dinner and accommodation at the hotel in Ragusa.
This day will begin with the visit of Ragusa Ibla and its historical centre, cradle of Sicilian Baroque. Used as a location of the extremely popular Police Inspector Montalbano Tv series, it is today stated among the 44 Italian World Heritage Sites. This little precious ancient town hosts more than 50 churches and many Baroque architectural treasures! You will be fascinated by its Cathedral, situated in the beautiful Dome square, and you will love the “Giardino Ibleo”, the oldest of the four main gardens in Ragusa. At 383 meters above sea level, from this beautiful garden you can admire a spectacular panorama!
The tour continues towards Modica town with innumerable Baroque architectural treasures and for this reason declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Walking along the tiny streets of this charming town, you will have a stop to visit Sabadì, one of the most renowned chocolate more manufacturers whose chocolate has been awarded as the best Modica chocolate during the last 9 years! You will enjoy a multi-sensory chocolate tasting discovering the authentic Sicilian flavours: the local nepitella (wild mint), the orange blossom honey, the raw PGI - quality Sicilian lemon and the PGI – quality Sicilian red orange are just some of the many flavours you can taste! Then, you will visit the beautiful and perfectly preserved noble seventeenth-century Palazzo Castro Polara Grimaldi. You will be astonished by its amazing balcony, which dominates the town with a spectacular view and you will have the feeling of being brought back to the past at the beginning of the 20th century, where time seems to have stopped. The style of the interior has the typical structure of Sicilian noble palaces: frescoes of landscapes, wallpapers in splendid satins, vases and furnishings of the most precious manufacture, together with the private collections of Donna Grazietta Grimaldi. All these signs will give you the impression that nothing has changed and that the ancient traditions of the house are still alive. You will then be brought back to the present by savouring some local delicacies under the shadow of the amazing Orti di San Giorgio: 7 gardens suspended between light and beauty. A breath-taking panorama will be the setting of your relaxing lunch!
The day goes on to the charming Piazza Armerina for visiting the famous Villa Romana del Casale, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and admiring the splendid polychrome mosaics! This majestic villa, which belonged to a member of the Roman Senatorial aristocracy, houses prestigious mosaics representing mythological and historical episodes.
Departure to Agrigento. Dinner and accommodation at the hotel in Agrigento.
In the morning, you will enjoy an excursion in Agrigento where you will visit the Valley of the Temples, one of the most outstanding examples of Greater Greece art and architecture, and one of the main attractions of Sicily, included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site list. Agrigento presents a remarkable series of Doric Temples of the 5th century and here you will see the “Temple of Heracles” and the “Temple of Concordia”.
Next, you will travel to Marsala where you will discover the city centre and the aristocratic buildings, monuments and Baroque churches. It is a lovely Mediterranean city featuring beautiful colours: bright yellow, intense blue, dazzling white and natural green. You will also enjoy a guided tour at Florio Cellars where you will see three fascinating barrel rooms with around 1,400 small barrels and 600 larger barrels where approx. 5,500,000 litres of Marsala wines age more in silence and stillness. After a 30 min. tour you will enjoy a wine tasting and lunch at the wine cellar.
This Sicily and Malta Itinerary will continue along the charming and well-known Salt Road: the west coast of Sicily with many salt marshes, which have given rise to one of the oldest salt-extracting industries in the world. They are now protected between Trapani and Marsala, in part because of the interesting birdlife, and as important sites of industrial archaeology.
Transfer to Palermo. Accommodation at the hotel in Palermo.
Discovery of Monreale and Palermo and food surprise at Antica Focacceria San FrancescoPalermo - Monreale - Palermo
After breakfast, you will spend the morning in Monreale. Here, you will see the huge Norman Cathedral, proclaimed the 8th Wonder of the World, and its splendid Cloister in Arab-Norman style: admirable masterpiece of art, sculpture, and semi-precious stones marquetry. It is one of the nine structures included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site known as Arab-Norman Palermo and the Cathedral Churches of Cefalù and Monreale.
Then, you will have a stop in Palermo, that is the cultural, economic and tourism capital of Sicily. While the Baroque predominates in Palermo, there is a profusion of different architectural styles reflecting the city’s multicultural past: Punic walls, Art Nouveau villas, noble residences, 17th century squares, including an elegant opera house. You will visit the wonderful Arab-Norman Cathedral, the astonishing Martorana Church and the amazing Palatine Chapel included in the more UNESCO World Heritage Site mentioned above. In Palermo, you will enjoy tasting local Sicilian street food and will stop for a food surprise at Antica Focacceria San Francesco.
In the afternoon, you will make a stop to enjoy a typical lunch with local food.
The walk will continue after lunch, and you will have the opportunity to admire the Teatro Massimo and the debated fountain in Pretoria Square.
Accommodation at the hotel in Palermo.
In the morning, you will be transferred to Cefalù, charming medieval town situated on the northern coast of Sicily. You will visit the amazing Norman Dome and have free time to walk through the city or visit the famous Mandralisca Museum.
In the afternoon, you will have lunch at a famous restaurant in Catania.
After lunch, you will visit Catania, the second largest city of Sicily after Palermo, the old town of which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its original Baroque style and its unique streets built with black lava stone. The colour of the city-centre buildings is black and dark grey, relieved with white limestone details around doors and windows. The effect is very elegant! The guided tour starts from the picturesque Duomo square with its magnificent cathedral and the famous statue of “Liotru”, antique lava-stone elephant, symbol of the city. Not far from here, you will more reach the University Square and you will have a walk along the splendid baroque Via dei Crociferi, the most representative 18th century street where you will admire the famous S. Benedict Monastery, UNESCO World Heritage Site. Before continuing along the precious city centre, you will make a stop at a historic bar in the city in order to taste the typical “granita and brioche”.
Accommodation at the hotel in Catania.
Hiking up Mount Etna, Europe’s most active volcano and visit of TaorminaCatania - Etna - Taormina - Catania
After a short visit of the famous “pescheria” (the ancient fish market) in the morning, you will visit Etna, the highest volcano in Europe (about 3350 m) and one of the largest and most active in the world, between the cities of Messina and Catania, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its regional park protects 59,000 hectares of unique geology, flora and fauna, villages and farms, and traditional methods of forestry, beekeeping, wine manufacture, stonework and carpentry. You will enjoy views of stunning landscapes heading to Rifugio Sapienza. You will reach the “Crateri Silvestri”, small volcanic cones now inactive, surrounded by ancient flows of lava. The view beyond the mountain’s hundreds of subsidiary cones and craters, can extend across the whole of Sicily, the Aeolian Islands and Calabria offering a unique spectacle!
You will make a stop to visit a beekeeping company, where you more will see the honey extraction lab, taste homemade honey and typical local products.
You will then proceed to Taormina, a charming town on the east coast of the island of Sicily, renowned for its magnificent location above the sea with an amazing view of Etna.
Free time for lunch in the afternoon.
After lunch, you will visit the fascinating Greek Theatre of Taormina which will leave you breathless for its commanding view on Giardini Naxos bay and the Etna mountain. You will have free time to walk through the picturesque medieval narrow streets, go shopping and have a look at the local handicrafts (coral jewels, precious laces, ceramics, sweets and much more).
The day will end with an overview of the beautiful Riviera of the Cyclops (Riviera dei Ciclopi), a mythical and legendary stretch of coastline north of Catania leading from Aci Castello to Acireale. The bizarre Cyclops islands in front of Aci Trezza have one of the most well known mythical stories, that comes from Homer’s book ‘Odyssey’ and tells the story of Ulysses and the one eyed Cyclops, Polyphemus.
Accommodation at the hotel in Catania.
After breakfast, you will have free time to discover the city centre of Catania.
According to flights schedule, private transfer to the airport and direct flight to Malta. The tour continues now without the tour leader.
Upon arrival in Malta, you will enjoy a private transfer to the hotel.
Accommodation at the hotel in Valletta.
Guided tour of Valletta and discovery of Mdina, the former capital of MaltaValletta - Mdina - Valetta
In the morning, you will enjoy a half day guided tour of Valetta to discover the treasures of the charming capital. You will visit the wonderful Casa Rocca Piccola, ancient palace of the sixteenth century that belonged to the Maltese nobility and is still today the private residence of the Marquis De Piro. You will then visit the Cathedral of St. John and the Barrakka Gardens from where you can enjoy a breathtaking view of the picturesque port of Valletta. Later on, you will visit the Grand Master’s Palace, nowadays seat of the Maltese Parliament.
Your tour continues to Mdina, the former capital of Malta. You will visit the Cathedral of St. Paul and then you will have free time to walk along its lovely streets and discover its viewpoint from which you can enjoy a splendid view.
After the guided tour, you will be transferred to your hotel. Free afternoon.
Accommodation at the more hotel in Valetta.
Discovery of Cottonera, Marsaxlokk, Blue Grotto and Dingli Cliffs in MaltaValletta - Cottonera - Marsaxlokk - Wied iz-Zurrieq - Valletta
On this day, you will enjoy a full day guided tour in Malta with private driver and guide to discover the beauty of this magical island. You will reach Cottonera, a group of three adjacent fortified cities in Malta also called “The Three Cities”: Senglea, Vittoriosa and Cospicua.
Afterwards you will visit the charming fishing village of Marsaxlokk in the southeastern region of Malta whose waterfront is decorated with traditional colourful fishing boats called “luzzi”. You will have some free time to stroll along the streets of the city centre and browse among the stalls of the famous local market.
You will continue your journey to the town of Wied iz-Zurrieq, where you will embark a boat for an excursion towards the famous Blue Grotto, a beautiful and picturesque natural cave that reflects the fluorescent colours of the underwater flora.
Your tour will continue on more board of a private vehicle in the direction of Dingli Cliffs through the Maltese countryside.
In the evening, you will return to your hotel in Valletta.
Every Saturday (from March 9, 2024 to November 16, 2024)
|Price per person in €
Every Saturday (from March 9, 2024 to November 16, 2024)
- 10 nights accommodation in a double (DBL) or twin (TWN) room at 4-star hotels;
- Breakfast at the hotel;
- Lunch on day 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 of the itinerary (beverages are not included);
- Dinner on day 2, 3 of the itinerary (beverages are not included);
- Excursions on the entire itinerary;
- Chocolate tasting in Modica;
- Wine tasting at the wine cellar in Marsala;
- Tasting of local street food in Palermo;
- Tasting of Sicilian “granita and brioche”;
- Honey tasting in Etna area;
- Transportation (deluxe bus) from day 2 to day 7 of the itinerary;
- Multilingual tour leader and professional travel guide (English, Spanish, Italian) except the days in Malta;
- Private transfer from the hotel to Catania airport;
- Direct flight Catania-Malta with 23 kg luggage included;
- Private transfer from Valletta airport to the hotel;
- 1 half-day excursion with a private driver-guide in English (1st day in Malta);
- 1 full day excursion with private driver-guide in English (2nd day in Malta).