Location: Italy Duration: 10 nights Price: From £1,150 per person in low season based on two adults travelling together and including all flights in economy class, accommodation on a bed and breakfast basis, car hire and taxes

Discover Sicily’s ancient world of Greek ruins and Roman mythology with this luxury self-drive holiday, where you’ll enjoy the island’s picturesque towns, sun-kissed beaches, and traditional Sicilian cuisine. From the faded grandeur of foodie capital Palermo, to ancient Agrigento; and from the seductive Syracuse to looming Mount Etna, you’ll quickly discover that this Italian island is proudly and distinctively Sicilian, with its own unique history, gastronomy and charm.

Perfect for

Independent couples and honeymooners who want to explore Sicily’s picturesque coastline, feast on superb food, dine alfresco and enjoy the traditions of this historic island.

In the know

Adding a few days to visit the gorgeous Aeolian Islands; the volcanic archipelago is easily reached by ferry or hydrofoil from Sicily.

Recommended for...
History & Heritage
Cultural Immersion
Food & Wine

PALERMO – 3 nights

As Sicily’s capital, Palermo offers diversity like nowhere else on the island; an enthralling history of medieval conquests has resulted in a clashing blend of architecture – from Romanesque to the Arabesque – and the tantalising aroma of street food drifting through the streets hints at the city’s reputation as a top foodie destination. After your flight touches down, you’ll be transferred to the BB22 Palace, a 15th century palazzo which was beautifully restored by Milanese owner Patrizia Marchetti. Explore the city’s monuments, and don’t try to resist the tempting Sicilian fare on every corner; here, it’s considered rude not to indulge. Try the delicious seven-layer setteveli cakes from the bakeries, or the Pane con Panelle from the street vendors. Get lost in Palermo’s warren of alleyways, and see what you find.

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AGRIGENTO – 2 nights

Slide behind the wheel of your hire car for the road trip ahead. Travelling south, your next destination is Agrigento: we suggest taking the scenic route west through Alcamo, where rolling hills and vineyards sprawl for as far as the eye can see. Stop to visit coastal villages such as prehistoric Caltabellotta, where the winding road literally climbs up and up offering views all the way. Continue on for Agrigento, famed for its Valle dei Templi. You’ll be staying right in the heart of this UNESCO World Heritage Site at the 18th century Villa Athena for two nights. Savour the unbeatable location whilst dining under the stars with the illuminated ruins of the Valle dei Templi just 200 metres away, and explore the ancient Greek masterpiece the next day with a guided tour.

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SYRACUSE – 2 nights

It won’t be long before you’re cruising Sicily’s south-eastern coastline dotted with powder white beaches until your next stop, Syracuse. Cross the bridge to the heart of ancient Syracuse: the island of Ortygia, where life is slower and lazy piazzas brimming with pavement cafes intersect with pedestrian streets. Discover the ancient folklore of Greek gods and goddesses at the island’s mystical Fonte Aretusa fountain, stroll along the crumbling lungomare and shop for soaps and sweet treats at the Piazza Archimede and Artale. Meanwhile, the lure of the beach is close enough for temptation: hit Fontane Bianche or Lido di Noto to relax in their warm waters. Back in Syracuse, you’ll stay at the elegant Hotel Gutkowski, and enjoy the captivating views of the Gulf of Ortygia from the rooftop terrace and from your guestroom.

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Head north to Mount Etna, Sicily’s enduring icon who refuses to be ignored. Make the climb to the volcano’s Valle del Bove, peeking into smouldering craters and ascending to Piano Provenzana where you’ll be rewarded with views of the island. Otherwise, a cable car ascends to a staggering 2,608m, amidst an unsettling terrain of rugged black lava and snowy peaks. According to Greek mythology, Hephaestus – the God of Fire – made Zeus’ thunderbolts here, and entrapped monster Typhon set off the eruptions whilst trying to escape from under the mountain. Regarded as one of the most famous routes on the island, it’s a trip not to be missed. The vineyards surrounding Etna are impossible to turn down – the land here is unique for its microclimate and cultivations at high altitude. Opt for a wine tour and indulge in olive oil tasting, and learn how the complex soils and temperamental volcano have left behind a turbulent but also booming wine and olive production. Staying at Monaci delle Terre Nere, you’re perfectly placed to visit Taormina, awash with Corinthian, Baroque and Byzantine architecture. Explore the city’s bustling streets, packed with boutiques, cafes and gelaterias - fruit-infused sorbets are a firm favourite on the island; try the regional specialty, Granita Gelsi e Limone.

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Good time to travel (but some limitations)

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Travel is not recommended

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