Mediterranean warmth and Twenty-Five centuries of mixed rule
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean and much bigger than most people realise. The Mafia and Inspector Montalbano spring to mind, whilst you’re unlikely to spot either of these, a visit to Sicily is rewarded with stunning architecture and traditions from 2,500 years of mixed Spanish, Roman, Greek, African and Italian occupation. If you’re expecting something much the same as Italy you’ll be disappointed, if you’re looking for surprises Sicily will deliver.
Our tour covers the whole island and throughout you’re never far from the sea. We stay in the islands two major cities, capital Palermo and second city Catania; see the geographical phenomenon of Mount Etna, Europe’s most active volcano; the nature of San Vito lo Capo peninsular, the ancient monuments at the Valley of Temples and Salinunte, the wonderful architecture in Syracuse and Cefalù, the UNESCO towns of Noto and Taormina, and the amazing mosaics of Villa Romana.
Add to this rich local cuisine, great wines, an opportunity to travel in your own motorhome with like minded people and this tour has all the content of a great holiday.
Sue & John Small – Sicily 2016
‘This is a great tour showing all of Sicilian life. The local tour guides were excellent on all excursions. Nurcan and Kevin are great leaders.’
Barbara & Pete Ball – Sicily 2016
‘Thanks for giving us such a varied holiday. Sicily has been on our wish list and the east & north coasts exceeded expectations. Also, many thanks for arranging the special diet at all group meals, which was good every time’
Day One – Tuesday 18th September
We meet in Paestum, southern Italy. This evening we get together at the Tour Directors motorhome for welcome drinks and a tour briefing following which we move to the campsite bar for a taste of wood fired pizza and local wine. Ancient Paestum was a Greek city on the coast of the Tyrrhenian Sea where today three Greek temples of the Doric order remain, these give a taste for some of the great architecture to come once in Sicily.
Day Two – Wednesday 19th September
Today we travel to the toe of Italy, we are now within sight of Sicily. 190 miles
Day Three – Thursday 20th September
With a short 30 minute ferry crossing we arrive in Sicily and to our campsite in Catania complete with sea views. We celebrate with dinner and Sicilian wine this evening in the campsites own restaurant. 70 miles
Day Four – Friday 21st September
A free day. Located in the shadow of Mount Etna Catania, the islands second largest city, has been reshaped many times. Over the years following violent eruptions from its near neighbour, the city has been rebuilt seven times and the local’s response has always been to build using material that comes in abundance following volcanic activity – lava. This makes for an unusual and interesting architecture style and from our campsite there is easy public transport links to the city centre.
Day Five – Saturday 22nd September
We have a guided excursion to Taormina and Mount Etna today. The beautiful town of Taormina is one of Sicily’s most famous resorts, perched on a rocky promontory overlooking the sea with dramatic views of Mount Etna it certainly justifies its nickname ‘the Pearl of the Mediterranean’. From Taormina we drive through Mount Etna’s national park to reach the highest point for vehicles where we take lunch in a mountain trattoria. Etna is one of the most active volcanos in the world and has been erupting for several millions of years; it was the legendary home of the Roman fire god, Vulcan, and the mythological one-eyed Cyclops. This afternoon there will be time to reach the summit by cable car & jeep for those who wish (payable locally).
Day Six – Sunday 23rd September
Free day. You may choose to relax at the campsite, swim in the sea or take a walk along the coast.
Day Seven – Monday 24th September
We travel south along the Sicilian coast to Avola. 60 miles
Day Eight – Tuesday 25th September
A free day, our campsite is right to the beach.
Day Nine – Wednesday 26th September
A full-day guided excursion to Noto and Syracuse. Noto is an attractive little town full of gold-coloured stone buildings with fantastical facades and despite being small achieves UNESCO world heritage status. Syracuse on the other hand is much bigger, has a magnificent archaeological zone and a beautiful centre built on the island of Ortigia. We have lunch included in a local restaurant.
Day Ten – Thursday 27th September
A free day.
Day Eleven – Friday 28th September
We leave the coast for a few days to explore some of the islands interior. This evening we have dinner in our Agriturismo (working farm) camps restaurant. 100 miles
Day Twelve – Saturday 29th September
We visit the site of Sicily’s finest Roman remains, the Villa Romana del Casale, which was built between 310 and 340AD. This UNESCO World Heritage site is famous for the richness and quality of the mosaics that decorate almost every room, regarded as the finest in situ anywhere in the Roman world.
Day Thirteen – Sunday 30th September
We have breakfast prepared for us this morning on the terrace overlooking the vines of our Agriturismo followed by the remainder of the day to relax and do very little in beautiful rural surroundings, it is Sunday!
Day Fourteen – Monday 1st October
Return to the coast and our next campsite situated in the ‘Valley of Temples’. 90 miles
Day Fifteen – Tuesday 2nd October
A free day. The seafront is within walking distance of our campsite.
Day Sixteen – Wednesday 3rd October
A guided excursion in the extraordinary Valley of the Temples. This UNESCO World Heritage site is one of Europe’s most significant legacies of Ancient Greece. You will see the ruins of the many temples, necropolis, houses and streets. There is also a fine archaeological museum.
Day Seventeen – Thursday 4th October
A free morning. At lunch time we wander to the coast for a long leisurely lunch.
Day Eighteen – Friday 5th October
We continue round the coast to arrive at Salinunte, a small pocket of Greece at the time Sicily was under North African control. 90 miles
Day Nineteen – Saturday 6th October
A free day and opportunity to visit the ancient site of Salinunte.
Day Twenty – Sunday 7th October
Continuing around the island we drive along the ‘North African’ coast, gaining its name by being geographically closer to Africa than mainland Italy. 130 miles
Day Twenty-one – Monday 8th October
A free day, our campsite is located on the picturesque peninsular of San Vito lo Capo.
Day Twenty-two – Tuesday 9th October
An excursion today to ‘Riserva naturale dello Zingaro’ nature reserve with lunch in a local restaurant included.
Day Twenty-three – Wednesday 10th October
A free day. San Vito town with its picturesque harbour and beach is just 15 minute walk away.
Day Twenty-four – Thursday 11th October
We arrive near Sicily’s capital. 90 miles
Day Twenty-five – Friday 12th October
A free day.
Day Twenty-six – Saturday 13th October
A guided excursion of Palermo with city restaurant lunch included. With its central location in the Mediterranean the city has a long and colourful history. Its various rulers, the Phoenicians, the Carthaginians, the Greeks, the Romans, and the Saracen Arabs have all left an influence making this bustling city what it is today.
Day Twenty-seven – Sunday 14th October
Drive to our final Sicilian campsite. 50 miles
Day Twenty-eight – Monday 15th October
A trip to the popular seaside resort of Cefalù situated on a rocky headland projecting into the Tyrrhenian Sea. It has a lovely beach and a picturesque harbour as well as a Cathedral in the Sicilian Romanesque style dating from 1131. Other sites you can see are a Saracen wash-house and the medieval Osterio Magno, traditionally thought to be the palace of Roger II, Sicily’s 12th Century Norman King
Day Twenty-nine – Tuesday 16th October
According to legend Bacchus was the god who brought wine to Sicily, legend aside, there is evidence that wine has been made here for millennia. In the more recent past most of Sicily’s grape harvest was exported to wine producers in other parts of Italy but in the last twenty years there have been major changes to the island’s wine culture and a new generation of local producers are now consistently winning international acclaim. Today we visit one of Sicily’s wineries for a tour and tasting of some of the excellent wines the country now produces.
Day Thirty – Wednesday 17th October
A free day before we have our ‘Farewell Dinner’ this evening and a chance to recall the many places and experiences we have encountered throughout the tour.
Day Thirty-one – Thursday 18th October
A relaxing start to the day after last night. Late afternoon we travel to Palermo to board our overnight ferry from Sicily to Northern Italy. 40 miles
Day Thirty-two – Friday 19th October
Upon departing our ferry this evening our tour comes to an end. You may make your own way back to the UK or if our Tour Directors are returning to the UK you may travel back with them (campsite and any other fees not included from this point).
PRICE TOUR DEPOSIT £000
6m Motorhome with 2 people = £0000 per person
6m Motorhome with 1 person = £0000
Supplement for motorhomes over 6m up to 8m = £000
Supplement for motorhomes over 8m up to 10m = £000
INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
- Southern Italy to Sicily ferry
- Sicily to Northern Italy ferry with inside cabin
- 30 campsite nights with hook-up
- 1 night on ferry in cabin
- All transfers required for included excursions
- Entrance fees on included excursions
- Services of two experienced Tour Directors in their own motorhome
- Tour Information Pack including map & GPS co-ordinates
- Michelin National Map
- DK Guidebook
EXCURSIONS & EVENTS INCLUDED
- Visit to Taormina
- Tour of Mount Etna
- Excursion to Noto and Syracuse
- Visit to Villa Romana del Casale
- Visit to Valley of Temples
- Excursion to ‘Riserva naturale dello Zingaro’
- Excursion in Palermo
- Visit to Cefalù
- Tour of Sicilian winery with tasting
- MEALS INCLUDED
- 1 Drinks Reception with wood fired pizza
- 1 Breakfast
- 5 Lunches with wine
- 4 Dinners with wine
This tour starts at Paestum in Italy, but if you would like to travel here at the same time as the Tour Directors please book the optional tour package so that everything can be arranged on your behalf
- Return Dover/Calais Ferry with 60 day Flexible Ticket + Club Class Lounge
- 8 additional campsite nights with electric hook-ups starting in Kent on Monday 10th September 2018 then in France, Germany, Switzerland & 4 x Italy
- Dinner at the campsite in Germany
- Tour information pack with suggested routes and GPS co-ordinates
- Services of Tour Directors travelling in their own motorhome
OPTIONAL PACKAGE PRICE
Motorhome with 2 people @ £000 per person
Motorhome with 1 person @ £000