Day 1 UK - Catania
Depart on your flight to Catania. On arrival, we'll transfer you to your hotel in the picturesque coastal village of Giardini Naxos, situated close to Taormina. You will stay here for three nights, so relax and settle in before enjoying dinner this evening.
Day 2 Taormina
We're off to Taormina today, a fascinating town which overlooks two sweeping bays. After a stroll, join your Tour Manager on an included visit to the magnificent Greco-Roman theatre here, perched dramatically on a clifftop. As well as exploring this ancient site, built around the 3rd century BC, you can take in panoramic views of the sea and Sicily's famous volcano, Mount Etna, which looms in the distance.
Before we head back to the hotel we'll make a stop for a tasting of granita. This semi-frozen dessert, that originated here, comes in many delicious flavours and is utterly refreshing.
Day 3 Giardini Naxos - at Leisure
It's Sicily's most famous attraction, its name known the world over, and today you can see Mount Etna up close if you join our optional excursion. You can ascend Europe's tallest active volcano by cable car to enjoy breathtaking views. You'll also have a further option to take a thrilling journey higher up the volcano in a 16-seater 4x4 vehicle in the company of an Alpine Guide.
After our exploration of Mount Etna we'll call at a traditional farm shop for a tour. We'll learn all about the fascinating way that honey is made and we'll try a selection of different flavours. We'll also taste locally produced olive oil, olives and vegetable pâté , along with three different wines.
Day 4 Villa del Casale - Campofelice di Roccella
We're going to head to our next base today, Campofelice di Roccella, near Cefalù, but not before the chance to revel in some Roman history. Our journey takes us to the 4th century Villa Romana del Casale, close to the town of Piazza Armerina. Here, excavations have revealed one of the world's richest and most complex collections of Roman mosaics. As you view them, you'll be amazed by their excellent condition.
We'll continue to our hotel and once you've unpacked, why not head out for a stroll and explore your surroundings.
Day 5 Monreale & Palermo
Watching over Palermo is the beautiful Monreale Cathedral, one of the greatest examples of Norman architecture in the world. The pleasant yet unremarkable exterior of the cathedral offers no clue as to the exquisite golden paintings and spectacular mosaics you'll discover when you venture inside.
We'll then move on to Palermo, Sicily's vibrant capital, which boasts a wealth of architecture ranging in style from Arabic to Art Nouveau. Palermo is famous for its street food tradition and we'll experience this first hand at the market, where you'll be treated to a street food experience in a local bar. You'll be able to sample a wide variety of dishes, such as deep fried tuna, a cheese made from sheep's milk, and arancini, which are rice balls filled with ragu sauce. Also on the menu will be caponata, a sweet and sour dish made with aubergines and other vegetables, served in a tomato sauce. It promises to be a treat for your tastebuds!
After you've eaten you could take some time to explore the light-filled Capella Palatine chapel, which proudly exhibits intricate Byzantine mosaics.
Day 6 Campofelice Di Roccella - at Leisure
How you spend today is entirely up to you. Relax by the pool or on the beach, or maybe you'll join an optional excursion to Agrigento. This ancient town dates back to the 6th century and is a wonderful showcase of Sicily's Greek past. With a Local Guide you'll discover the Valley of the Temples, which is dramatically situated on a high ridge overlooking the sea. Explore the Temple of Concord, famed for its surprisingly well-preserved columns, and the Temple of Zeus, the largest to be built by the Greeks.
Day 7 Cefalù
Today you'll head to nearby Cefalù, a pretty fishing port. There's lots to discover here, including its winding medieval streets, sandy beaches and one of Sicily's finest Norman cathedrals. If you peer inside, you'll see some of the island's earliest and best-preserved mosaics, with the spectacular Christ Pantocrator above the altar, particularly memorable.Meals included: B,D
Day 8 Catania - UK
There's time to enjoy the facilities at your hotel a little longer before we transfer you to Catania for your return flight to the UK.Meals included: B