7 days to discover and explore the most famous towns of Sicily.
Visit the towns of Palermo, Cefalù, Catania, Taormina, Siracusa and Noto. Hike the active volcano Mt. Etna and relax on the beach of Mondello. This is the perfect getaway to visit the best of Sicily in a short time.
We meet in Sicily’s capital, Palermo! In the afternoon you will meet your Italy on a Budget tour leader and fellow travelling companions at the reception of the accommodation where your tour leader will give you a briefing on what lies ahead on your tour. We will then proceed with an orientation walk of the city passing by the colourful markets of La Vucciaria and Ballarò then Quattro Canti, the Catherdral and Pretoria Quare. The tour will end in a local restaurant for a welcome dinner to get to know together your new travel friends (D).
Today is beach day! We will spend a full day at Mondello, a small seaside resort with a wonderful beach and turquoise sea just a short bus ride from the centre of the Sicilian capital Palermo. Excursions to the sea at Mondello are also a ritual for the people of Palermo so we cannot leave Sicily without spending a bit of time at Mondello. The beach is generally crowded in high season but it is a great way to take a break from a city sightseeing schedule. Here you will be able to hire pedal-boats, relax on the beach and buy food from the stalls along the street. From permanent kitchens to old men frying food on the back of little ape trucks – are good for cheap snacks on the go, selling seafood and local street food like pastries, arancini, panelle chick-pea fritters in rolls, and deep fried vegetables, pedlars weaving up and down the beach with jewellery, sarongs, food and drink, and generally a busy, lively atmosphere. Back to Palermo in the afternoon,
This day we head to the town of Cefalù which is one of the major tourist attractions in the region. Despite its size, every year it attracts millions of tourists from all parts of Sicily and also, from all over Italy and Europe for its long sandy beach, it’s imposing Normal cathedral and charming old centre. After an orientation walk of the city, you will have free time to walk through the narrow alleyways of the town and spend the afternoon at the beach. We will return back to Palermo before dinner. Free time.
It is time to say good bye and continue to your new destination Catania! Once in Catania and after checking in to our accommodation we will proceed with an orientation walk of the city passing by the city’s wide central square, Piazza del Duomo, the Fontana dell’Elefante statue, the richly decorated Catania Cathedral and the Pescheria, a weekday fish market surrounded by seafood restaurants. In the evening we will enjoy a traditional dinner in a local restaurant (D)
Early start to head to Siracusa, 2,700 years old city rich of Greek history, culture, amphitheatres, architecture, and also known as the birthplace of the preeminent mathematician and engineer Archimedes. Your guide will take you for an orientation walk through the historical centre and the the islet of Ortigia the heart of the city of Syracuse. Here you will admire the architectural beauties of different historical periods: from the first prehistoric settlements, through the numerous remains of ancient Greek Byzantine and Norman.
In the afternoon we will continue towards Noto, 32 kilometres Southwest of the city of Syracuse, famous for its fine buildings of the early 18th century, many of which are considered to be among the finest examples of Sicilian baroque style. We will return back to Catania in the evening.
Let’s discover the Europe’s highest active volcano with our expert guide who will lead you to discover the fascinating volcanic phenomena, walking through ancient woods, on eccentric craters and unique lava formations. During the the trekking route you will be able to admire from various points, the summit craters standing in the distance.
Continue the trip towards Taormina a hilltop town on the east coast of Sicily.The town is known for the Teatro Antico di Taormina, an ancient Greco-Roman theater still used today. Near the theater, cliffs drop to the sea forming coves with sandy beaches. A narrow stretch of sand connects the mainland to Isola Bella, a tiny island and nature reserve.
Check out time is by 10am but you are more than welcome to store your bags in the accommodation and spend some extra time in Catania. You can spend the day in complete relaxation and walk around Catania or head down to the closest sandy beach to relax and enjoy the crystal sea of Sicily. If you are hungry to discover new destinations you can easily combine this tour with any other IOAB tour. Check out the holiday page.
On day 1, in the afternoon, you will meet your Italy on a Budget tour leader, and fellow travelling companions, at the reception of the accommodation.
On Mondays from March till the end of November
3 nights in Palermo ( Hostels & Budget hotels) – 3 nights in Catania ( Hostels & Budget hotels)
TOUR TYPE: Small group tour. Good mix of organised activities with our team to meet new travellers and free time to explore on your own. This is a perfect tour for those you are visiting Sicily for the first time and don’t have a fortune to spend but still want to see as much as possible in a week with a local team.
TRANSPORT: We believe there is no better way to truly experience everything a country has to offer than exploring it by foot and with local transport to immerse yourself in its culture.