Travel Sicily: Catania, Siracusa, Noto, Modica, Ragusa, Agrigento, Trapani, Palermo. 19 days / 18 nights of wonderful holiday in Sicily to see 8 historical cities by the sea, stay in 3* hotel with good breakfast and paid train / bus transfer, all roads along the sea, between cities just for £ 750 (incl. the travel insurance policy)
Eternal crossroads of the Mediterranean, the gorgeous island of Sicily continues to seduce travellers with its dazzling diversity of landscapes and cultural treasures.
Seductively beautiful and perfectly placed in the heart of the Mediterranean, Sicily has been luring passersby since the time of legends. The land of the Cyclops has been praised by poets from Homer to Virgil and prized by the many ancient cultures – Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Elymians, Romans and Greeks – whose bones lie buried here.
Start your journey:
Catania has a strong magnetic pull. This is Sicily at its most youthful, a city packed with cool and gritty bars, abundant energy and an earthy spirit in contrast to Palermo’s aristocratic airs
Catania’s historic core is a Unesco-listed wonder, where black-and-white palazzos tower over sweeping baroque piazzas. One minute you’re scanning the skyline from a dizzying dome, the next perusing art in an 18th-century convent.
Beneath it all are the ancient ruins of a town with over 2700 candles on its birthday cake. Also, food is another local forte. This is the home of Sicily's iconic pasta alla Norma and the extraordinary La Pescheria market.
Ortygia, the original settlement and historic center of the city, is currently the most fascinating and evocative part of Syracuse, to which it is connected by three bridges. Since the most ancient times, the island was considered a suitable place for settlements being rich in springs, such as the Fountain of Arethusa. A spontaneous papyrus, the only one in Europe, grows in this fountain located a few meters from the sea as it does along Fiumefreddo River.
The first settlements date back to the Bronze Age, but it was during the Greek era that the island became the religious and political center of the ancient city of Syracuse with the construction of numerous temples. The Temple of Apollo, the only Doric temple in Sicily, dating back to the early sixth century BC, stands out among the major monuments of the Greek era.
Continuing on to the heart of the island we reach the beautiful Piazza Duomo, where Baroque buildings with light-colored walls overlook a white paved road, conveying the sensation of being immersed in a picture of light and harmony upon visitors.
An ancient tradition has it that in 61 AD Saint Paul came to the Church of Saint John the Catacombs. Saint John Chrysostom was certain that during this short visit Paul had preached in public – hence the widespread belief that Saul of Tarsus, Paul’s original name, was the first to publicly speak of Christianity in Sicily, and in all of the Western world, preaching from the burial place of martyr Saint Marcian, the first bishop of the city, where the crypt in his name is now.
Noto is an architectural supermodel, a baroque belle so gorgeous you might mistake it for a film set. Located less than 40km southwest of Syracuse, the town is home to one of Sicily's most beautiful historic centres. The pièce de résistance is Corso Vittorio Emanuele, an elegant walkway flanked by thrilling baroque palazzi and churches.
Dashing at any time of the day, it’s especially hypnotic in the early evening, when the red-gold buildings seem to glow with a soft inner light
Noto is one of 8 towns perceived for its dazzling Baroque design that makes up the UNESCO World Heritage recorded ‘Late Baroque Towns of the Val Di Noto’ in Sicily. Like the majority of the Catholic Churches in Sicily, they never neglect to inspire you with their sheer scale. This magnificent church is amazing, and you must look upwards from the sacrificial table at the awesome frescoes. A serene place to sit, rest and consider life!
Explore Monastero del Santissimo Salvatore...
The Archimandrite of the most Holy Saviour is a Monastery of the Most Holy Saviour of Messina. It is an important cenobium of Italian-Greek monasticism in Sicily, after the transmission by King Ruggero II in the 11th-century
Then, relax at the Calamosche Beach...
Modica is one of southern Sicily's most distinctive towns, its steeply stacked medieval centre pierced by a towering baroque cathedral. But unlike some of the other Unesco-listed cities in the area, it doesn't package its assets into a single easy-to-see street or central piazza: rather, they're spread around the town and take some discovering
And while it can take a little while to orientate yourself, once you've got the measure of the bustling streets and steep staircases, you'll find a warm, genuine place with a welcoming vibe, cosmopolitan air and strong sense of pride
An important Greek and Roman city, Modica had its heyday in the 14th century when, as the personal fiefdom of the Chiaramonte family, it was one of the most powerful cities in Sicily
Ragusa is a town of two faces. Sitting on the top of the hill is Ragusa Superiore, a busy workaday town with sensible grid-pattern streets and all the trappings of a modern provincial capital, while etched into the hillside further down is Ragusa Ibla.
This sloping area of tangled alleyways, grey stone houses and baroque palazzi on handsome squares is effectively Ragusa's historic centre and it's quite magnificent
Ragusa Ibla is the historical area of the city, and has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It has everything – a plethora of beautiful churches, public gardens, shopping, and restaurants. The main churches of Ragusa Ibla are San Giuseppe and Santa Maria delle Scale.
The local people have an enormous amount of pride in their local patron saints, so it is important to visit the churches and learn about the history of each saint. Outside of the important churches is a beautiful public garden where locals go to relax, and the children play
The Valley of the Temples, also known as Valle dei Templi in Italian, is the must-see attraction if you are in Agrigento. It’s one of the most famous historical sites in Sicily. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this archaeological site is located south of the town of Agrigento. The park has 8 temples, all built between 510 and 430 BC
Agrigento Old Town is a nice place to take a stroll, with its beautiful churches and pretty cobblestone streets. Well, as long as you aren’t allergic to stairs! The route begins at Atenea Street, the historical center’s main street. Along the way, sign boards will indicate you the monuments to see or visit, mainly churches and palaces.
The Holy Spirit Monastery, “Monastero de Santo Spirito” in Italian, with its almond cakes made by the nuns and the San Gerlando Cathedral are the most famous. During you tour, you can also see the Greeks’ Santa Maria Church and the Episcopal Palace.
After the Valley of the temples, the Scala dei Turchi or “Turkish staircase” is undoubtedly the second most visited place in Agrigento. You will find this must-see spot on many postcards! Located west of Agrigento, in Realmonte, the Scala dei Turchi is a white limestone cliff carved in a staircase shape by the wind and sea. The contrast between the whiteness of the cliff and the turquoise water is striking
Hugging the harbour where Peter of Aragon landed in 1282 to begin the Spanish occupation of Sicily, the sickle-shaped spit of land occupied by Trapani's old town once sat at the heart of a powerful trading network that stretched from Carthage to Venice. Traditionally the town thrived on coral and tuna fishing, with some salt and wine production
These days, Trapani's small port buzzes with ferry traffic zipping to and from the remote Egadi Islands and the mysterious volcanic rock island of Pantelleria, not far from Tunisia. Trapani's adjacent historic centre, with its small but compelling maze of ancient churches and gold-stone palazzi, is a mellow place to stroll, for both locals and travellers awaiting their next boat.
From late afternoon onward, car-free main street Via Garibaldi buzzes with what feels like the entire town out in force enjoying their lazy, absolute sacrosanct passeggiata.
In Erice, we advise you to follow the signposted walk. It will allow you to see all the must-see attractions in the village, without missing anything. The most impressive is the castle at the top of the cliff. From there, the view over the whole valley of Trapani and the sea is magnificent!
Erice is a very touristic village, you will meet a lot of people between the village entrance and the street leading to the castle. But if you move away from the main street and walk along the cobbled streets, everything quickly becomes quiet and peaceful. Don’t hesitate to walk around in the lesser known streets of the village after admiring the main attractions.
In the village, you will also find many restaurants, cafés, souvenir shops and pasticceria. The most famous is Maria Grammatico’s, which offers delicacies made from marzipan, cannoli and the complete range of Sicilian pastries
An option is to take a cable car from Trapani to Erice. A round trip costs 9€ and it takes around 10 minutes to arrive in the village. It’s the best option if you want to enjoy the magnificent scenery, but it’s also quite impressive!
Having been the crossroads of civilisations for millennia, Palermo delivers a heady, heavily spiced mix of Byzantine mosaics, Arabesque domes and frescoed cupolas. This is a city at the edge of Europe and at the centre of the ancient world, a place where souk-like markets rub up against baroque churches, where date palms frame Gothic palaces and where the blue-eyed and fair have bronze-skinned cousins
Centuries of dizzying highs and crushing lows have formed a complex metropolis. Here, crumbling staircases lead to gilded ballrooms and guarded locals harbour hearts of gold. Sicily’s largest city is rewarding the inquisitive with citrus-filled cloisters, stucco-laced chapels and crooked side streets dotted with youthful artisan studios.
Add to this Italy’s biggest opera house and an ever-growing number of vibrant, new-school eateries and bars and you might find yourself falling suddenly, unexpectedly in love
The Teattro Massimo
Who would have thought that a theater would be one of the largest structures in Palermo? The Teattro Massimo is immense and it towers over the relatively small buildings surrounding the Piazza Giuseppe Verdi. Opened in 1897, it is the largest Opera House in Italy and is famed for its acoustic qualities.
With an exterior that looks more like a palace, this building is truly opulent, but the interior is just as lavish.Guided tours are available daily of the interior of this fantastic building including tours of the actual auditorium and its boxes.
The Itinerary in Sicily: Catania, Siracusa, Noto, Modica, Ragusa, Agrigento, Trapani, Palermo
- 1 Day: You arrive to Catania, enjoy your first day in Sicily and stay overnight
- 2 Day: Your second day in Catania and stay overnight
- 3 Day: Train from Catania to Siracusa (approx. 1 hrs 50 mins), enjoy your day and stay overnight
- 4 Day: Your second day in Siracusa and stay overnight
- 5 Day: Train from Siracusa to Noto (approx. 1 hrs 15 mins), enjoy your day and stay overnight
- 6 Day: Your second day in Noto and stay overnight
- 7 Day: Train from Noto to Modica (approx. 1 hrs 15 mins), enjoy your day and stay overnight
- 8 Day: Your second day in Modica and stay overnight
- 9 Day: Train from Modica to Ragusa (approx. 45 mins), enjoy your day and stay overnight
- 10 Day: Your second day in Ragusa and stay overnight
- 11 Day: Train /Bus from Ragusa to Agrigento (2 hours 10 min train along the sea to Canicatti, then 30 min to Agrigento), enjoy your day and stay overnight
- 12 Day: Your second day in Agrigento and stay overnight
- 13 Day: Bus along the sea from Agrigento to Trapani (approx. 3 hrs 30 mins), enjoy your day and stay overnight
- 14 Day: Your second day in Trapani and stay overnight
- 15 Day: Your third day in Trapani, optional visit Erice Village (cubleway)***, come back to Trapani and stay overnight
- 16 Day: Bus along the sea from Trapani to Palermo (approx. 1 hrs 55 mins), enjoy your day and stay overnight
- 17 Day: Your second day in Palermo and stay overnight
- 18 Day: Your third day in Palermo and stay overnight
- 19 Day: Take a nice breakfast in your hotel, have a nice walk (depends on time of your fly tickets) and fly back home
***To reach the lofty heights of Erice, we recommend the 10-minute cable car journey up from Trapani to Erice. Regular buses connect Trapani’s town centre with the cable car station just a couple miles out of centre. Return Ticket of cable car costs around 9 Euro. Alternatively, if for some reason you do not want to use cable car, catch the bus from Trapani up to Erice – the service takes around 45 minutes.
For 19 days / 18 nights of a fabulous journey with stops in 3* hotels with breakfast and paid tickets for trains / buses between cities
* The price of the hotels is based on a double room, so you will need to buy a trip for two
*Please, contact Travel Dream Club and we will offer a good option for Solo Travelers: email@example.com
*Travel Dream Club will provide you with a travel guide with a description of routes and historical places, as well as a “package of tips” from experienced travelers and you will have your holiday enjoyable and planned by your desire
* You can change the dates of your holiday before full coordination of details and completed travel documents
*If you want to change amount of days/nights to stay, please, contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org . We are happy to make your holiday planned by your desire
*No cancellation after full coordination of details and completed travel documents. Changes are possible, subject to availability
*Refund before final approval of documents guaranteed
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