Grade

Easy

Hotel Accommodation

Included

Self-Drive Holiday

14 days

Visits

As per itinerary

Licensed Local Guide

Available on Request

Self-Driving around Sicily – 14 days

Season: all year available on request
13 nights/14 days

Palermo (4 nights) Marsala (2 nights) Agrigento (1 night) Syracusa (3 nights) Taormina (3 nights)
Hotel Package: First Class Properties
Airline Tickets: not purchased by us

Important: the below route is just an idea. We can customize it based on your real needs and expectations

READ MORE ON SELF DRIVE HOLIDAYS
THINKS TO KNOW BEFORE YOU SELF-DRIVE IN SICILY

Land: Palermo airport – West Side
Leave: Catania airport – East Side

Day 1: Palermo airport > Independent Bus/Taxi/Private Transfer > Town
Day 2: Palermo Street Food Walking Tour and Monreale
Day 3: Relax in Palermo
Day 4: Palermo Pick-up the car > Cefalù > Palermo
Day 5: Palermo > Erice and Salt Way Road > Marsala
Day 6: Marsala Salt Pans and Winery with wine tastings
Day 7: Marsala > Selinunte > Agrigento
Day 8: Agrigento and Piazza Armerina > Syracusa
Day 9: Relax in Syracusa
Day 10: Syracusa > Noto and Marzamemi > Syracusa
Day 11: Syracusa > Ragusa and Modica > Taormina
Day 12: Relax in Taormina
Day 13: Taormina > Etna Volcano > Taormina
Day 14: Taormina > Catania airport > Drop-off the car

Day 1
Palermo airport > Independent Transfer: Town
Welcome in Palermo, to the world’s most conquered city!

Upon arrival to Palermo airport independent transfer to the town by:
-taxi: which is available outside the security area.
-public bus: departure every 0.30 hour. You can buy the ticket on the spot.
-private transfer service: inquiry us

The balance of the day is at leisure to explore the town.
Day 2
Palermo Street Food Walking Tour and Monreale
Breakfast at hotel.

Depart 10:30AM/Return 4:30PM
From Monday to Saturday


Start your collective walking tour admiring the Massimo Theatre (external view), then explore a suggestive and lively open-air market, a place with strong Arab influences, resembling a souk, with picturesque stands of fresh fish, cheeses, fruits and vegetables.

During the tour you will have the opportunity to observe local people in their daily activities and to savor foods that a real Sicilian people love to eat! Tasting of typical street food is included.

The walking tour through the ancient center of Palermo is around 3-4 hours and you will visit several monuments including Piazza Pretoria and the Cathedral.

At the end of this tour you will reach Monreale by taxi for a stop to visit on your own the Dome (Admission fee: not included), a wonderful example of the Arab-Norman art and architecture. Launched in 1174 by William II, the Dome represents scenes from the Old and New Testaments all in golden mosaics.

Later, return to Palermo by taxi.
Day 3
Relax in Palermo
Day 4
Palermo > Pick-up the car > Cefalù > Palermo
Breakfast at hotel.

Today pick the vehicle up and start your self drive to Cefalù,  located on the northern coast of Sicily, about 70 km from Palermo.

The historic district is lying in the shadow of this bastion and clings around its beating heart which is undoubtedly the Duomo, a gigantic cathedral built by Roger II, the Norman.

There are many sights to see in Medieval Cefalù as well.

Entirely carved out from the rock and active until recently, is the Medieval washhouse.

In this special setting, full of  history and culture, we are thrown back into the  past, among songs screamed by the Sicilian laundresses, busy in their daily ritual.

After this interesting immersion in art and culture, you just have to look for a good spot in front of the wonderful sea and order fresh fish while waiting for the sunset and for the spectacle of the enlightened port brightening the night up.

Later self drive back to Palermo.
Day 5
Palermo > Erice and Salt Way Road > Marsala
Breakfast at hotel.

Today self-drive to Erice. In spite of several of tourist inflow every day, much of Erice’s natural beauty is preserved to retain its charm.

The proof of which are the narrow medieval roads just enough to pass only one local vehicle one way direction only.

To discover Erice, let’s begin the tour from Porta Trapani and walk through the alley streets and the squares, bordered by churches and palaces that, in open spaces, reveal majestic landscapes.

Among the most beautiful places, there is the Spanish neighborhood. It is said that this area was made during the Spanish ruling in order to accommodate Spanish soldiers, as it was mandatory for every city of Sicily. In Erice, a blockhouse was built, which we have fascinating remains, and a church dedicated to the cult of S. Antonio; however, the Spanish neighborhood was never finished because the soldiers were housed in the nearby castle.

Erice’s symbol is the Venus Castle (Castello di Venere), built by the Normans who used materials from the temple of Venus in Erice, from which the castle takes its name. The castle was surrounded by towers and beside them there is the Balio, a wonderful garden from which you enjoy an extraordinary panorama.

Exploring Erice narrow streets do not forget to stop in a local pastry shop. Personally we do recommend the historical one Pasticceria Grammatico.

Let’s taste the famous sweets of Erice. We have a great choice among historical laboratories of sweets from Erice. There are sweets made from ancient recipes of the nuns of cloistered monasteries.

Decorated like lace, the marzipan sweets are stuffed with preserved cedar. The genovesi ericine are filled with hot custard and sprinkled with icing sugar. Mustaccioli, classic or honey types of cookies, are flavored with a hint of clove. Finally, the marzipan fruits, almond based, with soft and natural colors, cannot miss in this list.

In the early afternoon self-drive to Marsala crossing the Salt Way Road, skirting the lagoon to see the snow-capped mountains but hills of salt, one of the Sicilian economy’s historical resources that was already very precious in the days of the Phoenicians, who were the first to bring some form of technology to its production.
Day 6
Marsala Salt Pans and Winery with wine tastings
Breakfast at hotel.

Marsala is internationally famous for one thing: wine!

A significant date in Sicilian wine history is 1773, the year John Woodhouse began producing what was destined to become one of the island’s best loved products: Marsala.

Today visit one of the most important Winery in Marsala with wine tastings.

Later relax at the salt pans Saline Ettore Infersa (Admission fee: payable on the spot at the ticket office) which offer a truly unique landscape. Windmills, first introduced during mediaeval times, dot the horizon, a testament to how things were once done, though one or two continue to function, pumping water through the sluice gates into or out of the various basins. Piles of harvested salt, neatly covered with terracotta tiles, lie between the road and the basins waiting to be despatched.
Day 7
Marsala > Selinunte > Agrigento
Breakfast at hotel.

Today we then continue our Sicilian experience with the amazing visit of the most imposrtant archaeological sites: Selinunte, one of the most important archaeological sites in Europe.

Located on the south west coast of Sicily, Selinunte (named Selinos by Greeks) was one of the richest and most important cities for Magna Grecia. Unfortunately, it was turned into ruins by a fierce attack of Carthaginans who massacred or took into slavery its inhabitans.

Undoubtedly, its ruins runk among the most remarkable and fascinating archaeological sites in Sicily. The archeological site is the largest in Europe.

If you are passionated about history and archeology, or just curious and eager to see world’s wonders, you will spend very suggestive time by visiting this coffer brimming with Mediterranean history.

Furthermore, Selinunte benefits from a beautiful position: it overlooks the sea and it is surrounded by golden beaches.

Book a Private Guided Visit of Selinunte:
https://www.tourofsicily.com/tour/selinunte-walking-tour-with-private-licensed-local-guide/

In the afternoon self-drive to Agrigento
Day 8
Agrigento and Piazza Armerina > Syracusa
Breakfast at hotel.

Today visit to the Valley of the Temples, one of the main sicilian tourist attractions. If you are doing a Sicily tour, a visit to the valley of the temples should be a “must”, despite the great distances and the long journey times to Agrigento departing from other Sicilian towns.

Book a Private Guided Visit of Agrigento:
https://www.tourofsicily.com/tour/agrigento-walking-tour-with-private-licensed-local-guide/

Walking on the temple hill with the huge doric temples all around us, is an impressive experience.

Later self drive to Piazza Armerina to visit the Roman Villa of Casale.
Originally the property of a powerful Roman family, it dates back to the 4th Century A.D.
This majestic Imperial villa, standing tall in the Province of Enna (perhaps the most “Roman” of places on the Island), is a magnificent rural abode, fascinating, above all, for its captivating mosaics, considered the most beautiful and best-preserved of their kind.

Book a Private Guided Visit of Piazza Armerina:
https://www.tourofsicily.com/tour/piazza-armerina-walking-tour-with-private-licensed-local-guide/

The self-drive continue onto Syracusa.
Day 9
Relax in Syracusa
Breakfast at hotel.

Today independent visit to the town.

As one of the oldest cities in the Mediterranean, Syracuse has a wonderful collection of historical sites from both the ancient Greek and Roman time periods. Furthermore, this city was considered one of the main powers in the Mediterranean sea during these ancient times and allied with both the Spartans and Corinthians.

Book a Private Guided Walking Tour:
https://www.tourofsicily.com/tours/walking-in-siracusa/

Book a Regular Day Tour:
-Syracusa Cooking Class and Ortigia Market
-Ortigia Island Boat Tour 
Day 10
Syracusa > Noto and Marzamemi > Syracusa
Breakfast at hotel.

Today self-drive to the town of Noto,famous as one of “capitals” of Baroque art in Italy. The city of Noto was rebuilt --totally rebult after the earthquake of 11 January 1693 -- approximately 15 kilometers away and owes its beauty to the fact that it was built using a consistent style.

The architects who worked on its reconstruction throughout the 18th century thought of the city as if it were theatrical scenery full of unexpected views and in which no two corners were alike.

Added to this was the ability of local sculptors who had learned to use the local stone, which is rather soft, to decorate the buildings with a sort of lacework made of stone.

This unique result is the reason why Noto, and the Baroque towns of the Noto valley, were proclaimed a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Then, the day continue onto Marzamemi, an enchanting fishing village, not far from the famous “regina barocca” (baroque queen) Noto; it features in its blue venues of its waters and the pure white of the, kissed by the sun, houses.

It is Marzamemi, with its tunny fishing nets dated 1600, one of the most important in Sicily, with its docks for yachting boats, ruins of ancient vessels, narrow alleys, beaches impressed at sight, traditional cuisine which highlights the strong and original fishing tastes, and the wise processing of fishing products (red tuna bottarga), very often matched to the tomato of the nearby Pachino.

Self drive back to Syracusa.
Day 11
Syracusa > Ragusa and Modica > Taormina
Breakfast at hotel.

Today we explore Modica and Ragusa Ibla before driving to Taormina.

Today explore a village which is considered the Sicilian town with an ancient segret: Made in the Sicilian town of Modica, the Aztec-inspired chocolate is one of the world’s best-kept secrets.

When the Spanish were ruling Sicily in the 16th Century, conquistadors went to Mexico and brought back cacao and the recipes needed for what the Aztecs called xocoàtl, a paste ground by a smooth round stone called a metate.

Unlike the often over-sugared and creamy snack we know as chocolate, the original xocoàtl was bitter and used to enhance sauces for meat dishes, grated over salads or eaten on its own as a dietary supplement. If prepared with certain spices, it was considered an aphrodisiac.

In Modica, generations of families have followed the same techniques, using metates crafted with lava stone from Mt Etna. Locals would mix the chocolate paste with sugar, “cold working” it so that the sugar doesn’t get hot enough to melt; it gives the treat an unusual but deliciously crunchy texture. Then, they would incorporate flavours typically enjoyed on Sicily such as lime oil or pistachio. Today, flavourings are occasionally adapted to more modern tastes such as the current European fashion for sea salt chocolate.

Later continue onto Ragusa, located in the southeast side of Sicily, is a wonderful Baroque town belonging to the Unesco Heritage, together with the other cities forming part of “Val di Noto”.

After the earthquake of 1693, which destroyed the city along with its neighbours Modica, Noto, Scicli and Catania, it was rebuilt in two parts: Ragusa Superiore (Upper Ragusa, the modern town) and Ragusa Ibla, rebuilt on the ruins of the old town.

Constructed on a spur, Ibla is a very charming town. The city centre is pedestrian and is characterized by palaces and churches in Baroque style. Eighteen of its buildings are protected by UNESCO patronage.

We can certainly affirm that Ragusa is one of the most fascinating towns in Sicily.

Later self drive to Taormina.
Day 12
Relax in Taormina
Breakfast at hotel.

Today independent visit to one of Italy's most historic holiday resorts, Taormina is a picturesque small town perched on a slope high above the Ionian Sea on the eastern coast of Sicily.

A popular and fashionable destination for well over a century, Taormina's hotels and restaurants are very experienced at welcoming foreign tourists. Many of these are fairly expensive, including some fabulous luxury options.

Close to the site of one of the earliest colonies founded by the Ancient Greeks in Sicily, Taormina became a thriving Greek and then Roman town. The size and elegance of the town cathedral and many of its buildings are evidence of Taormina's moderate prosperity over the centuries. By the end of the 19th century this picturesque and ancient town was already on the tourist trail, with famous visitors including Oscar Wilde, Richard Wagner and Tsar Nicholas II.

Book a Private Guided Walking Tour:
https://www.tourofsicily.com/tours/walking-in-taormina/

Book a Regular Day Tour:
-Taormina Cooking Class
-Taormina Boat Tour

Book a Private Day Tour:
-Taormina Boat Tour
Day 13
Taormina > Etna Volcano > Taormina
Breakfast at hotel.

The last but not the least Sicilian Highlights: Etna Volcano one of most active of the world.
Its impressive size ( more than 3327 meters high with an average basal diameter of 40 km)  overlooks  the whole region.
Its spectacular eruptions and its fiery lava flows, have always aroused the interest of scientists along with the curiosity of visitors from all over the world.

Since 2013 Mount Etna is in the Unesco’s World Heritage List  for its geological peculiarities of planetary relevance.


In relation to the different altitudes and exposure of the slopes, Etna offers a high biodiversity with a rich Mediterranean scrubland and numerous wood species: birches with clear bark, evidence of ancient glaciations,oaksbeechespinesbrooms of Etna and chestnut trees. In the area of Sant’Alfio we find the oldest and largest tree in Europe, the Hundred Horses Chestnut, awarded with the title of UNESCO Messenger of Peace.


If you are active and hiker guy do not hesitate to check our amazing Hiking Tour: Etna Hiking and Descent by the volcano ash


If you want to handle the day tour to the Etna Volcano on your own give a look at our blog: https://www.tourofsicily.com/etna-volcano-in-a-pocket/


In the afternoon self drive back to Taormina.



Day 14
Taormina > Catania airport > Drop-off the car
Breakfast at hotel.

Today self drive to Catania airport. Upon arrival drop the car off and walk to the airport.

Arrivederci!
Included
  • Hotel accommodation as per program
  • Vehicle with air conditioning
  • Visit to vineyards
  • Wine Tastings
Not Included
  • Admission fees
  • Ascent to the top (Optional service)
  • Beverage and meal not specified
  • City taxes
  • Fee for luggage handling fee at hotel
  • Gratuities and tips
  • Licensed Tourist Guide
  • Optional Excursions
  • Personal expenses and extra drinks
  • Travel Insurance
Contact us for more information