Malta & sicily
Set out on a journey through the history, culture and beautiful regions of both islands.
April 24 – May 4, 2023
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Day 1: Arrival in Malta International Airport
Airport transfer to accommodation in Valetta Hotel. Time to relax before dinner.
Day 2: Valletta
We tour the Capital of Malta, whose nucleus is built on the promontory of Mount Sceberras, dividing Valletta into 2 harbours, Grand Harbour to the east and Marsamxett Harbour to the west.
Day 3: Mdina & Rabat
Mdina, a typical medieval town also known as “The Silent City” is the old capital of Malta. A visit will take you back centuries as you explore cobbled narrow streets, the churches, monasteries and palaces.
Rabat, originally the suburb of Mdina, is now bigger and is recognized as the birthplace of Maltese Christianity.
Day 4: Gozo
ne must explore Gozo island for at least one day when visitng Malta. Places to visit are the villages of Xlendi, Marsalforn and the capital Victoria (its Citadel and the Ta’ Pinu Basilca are a must!). Other places of interest include the Ggantija Temples, Xaghra Windmill, Calypso’s Cave, Azure Window.
Day 5: Travel to Sicily (Pozzallo) by Ferry then drive to Siracusa passing through Noto
Today we take a nearly 2-hour ferry ride to Pozzallo, Sicily then drive for a little over 30 minutes to Noto. After a leisurely lunch and afternoon spent in Noto, we have a 40-minute drive to Siracusa, our base for the next 2 nights. Noto is the heart and starting point for a visit to the valley of the Sicilian Baroque. It was founded again in the 1700’s after it was destroyed by an earthquake in 1693. This allowed 3 architects freedom to unite Baroque rigidity with elements of the Renaissance and neoclassical pseudo-Spanish elements.
Day 6: Piazza Armerina/ Siracusa
Piazza Armerina, situated in Central Sicily, has the Villa Romana del Casale as its biggest draw. The luxurious Villa is thought to have been the country retreat of Marcus Aurelius Maximianus, Rome’s co-emperor during the Diocletian reign (AD 286-305), and contains the largest, riches and most complex mosaics in the world. It is also one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Italy.
After a morning in Villa Romana del Casale, we spend a leisurely afternoon and evening wandering around Siracusa and enjoying the local cuisine in the evening.
Day 7: Transfer to Taormina
We leave Siracusa and drive for 1.5 hours to Taormina where we will spend 1 night. Taormina is a hilltop town on the east coast of Sicily that allows one incredibly scenic views from almost anywhere. It also sits in the shadows of Mount Etna, Europe’s largest and most active volcano.
Day 8: Transfer to Castellammare del Golfo via Cefalù
We depart Taormina in the morning and start our journey to Western Sicily, passing through Cefalù (2.5 hours drive).
Cefalù, a coastal city located about 70kms east of Palermo and one of Sicily’s greatest Arab-Norman architectural masterpieces, is suited for a slow, walking exploration.
Day 9: Palermo and Castellamare del Golfo
We spend the day in the Italian Metropolitan City of Palermo, the capital of Sicily. Palermo is a city that doesn’t go easy on you with incessant activity. But its charm of backstreets opening onto pretty squares and mosaiced churches will win you over. Tired districts have awakened as new restaurants open up and the city’s grand Baroque palaces are welcoming to visitors. After a day out, you get back to Castellammare del Golfo and spend the rest of the afternoon exploring at your leisure.
Day 10: Selinunte, Scopello and Trapani
The ancient Greek metropolis of Selinunte was built in the 7th century BC on a promontory overlooking the sea, and over two and a half centuries became one of the world’s richest and most powerful cities.
Scopello is a delightful hamlet with a resident population of about eighty in the territory of Castellammare del Golfo in the province of Trapani. It developed around an old 18th-century baglio – farm buildings built around a gated courtyard – and a church standing on a knoll overlooking the sea.
Trapani was founded by the Elymians who used it as an agricultural center. When Phoenicians took over, Trapani was transformed into an important port.
Day 11: Departure from Sicily
Today, we leave Castellammare del Golfo to be transferred to Palermo Falcone-Borsellino Airport for your international flight bound home. You will be taking lasting memories of the magical 10-day trip to the Mediterranean island and historical paradise of Malta and the UNESCO site-laden Sicily, a crossroad of the Greek-Roman-Arab cultures, beautiful landscapes and diverse cuisine.
Valletta – St. John’s Co-Cathedral, The Malta War Museum, Vittoriosa, Cospicua, Senglea
Mdina – Mdina Cathedral, Palazzo Falzon, Cathedral Museum, Palazzo Vilhena, the Bastion
Rabat – St. Paul’s Church, St. Paul’s Grotto, Roman Villa, Verdala Palace
Gozo – Xlendi, Marsalforn, Victoria (Citadel, Ta’ Pinu Basilica), Ggantija Temples, Xaghra Windmill, Calypso’s Cave, Azure Window
Noto – Noto Cathedral, Arco di Trionfo, Corso Vittorio Emanuele, Church of St. Francis Immaculate, Church of Santa Chiara, Palazzi Ducezzio, Nicolaci Villadorata
Siracusa – Parco Archeologico della Neapolis, Teatro Greco, Umbertino Bridge, Ortygia, Piazza Duomo,
Piazza Armerina – Villa Romana del Casale
Taormina – Greco Teatro, Piazza Duomo, Corso Umberto
Cefalù – Spaggia di Cefalù, Tempio di Diana, Bastione Capo Marchiafava
Palermo – Capella Palatina, Palazzo dei Normanni, Cattedrale di Palermo, Ballarò
Castellammare del Golfo – Cala Marina, Castello
Selinunte – Parco Archeologico di Selinunte, Sanctuary of Malophoros
Scopello – Tonnara, Faraglioni
Trapani – Trapani Salt Pans
Salt Museum of Saline Culcasi
Tour fee is based on double occupancy.
- Airport transfers
- Land transportation
- Breakfasts and dinners (excluding drinks).
- Ferry transfers
- Other activities such as museum and park visits
- Tour guide fees,
- Lunch, snacks, mini-bar consumption and other drinks are for your personal expense.