Important Note: This tour begins in Palermo and ends in Catania, and whilst it is not fully escorted you will be met by private guides on some days of the tour to take you on small-group sightseeing excursions. Local assistance will also be on hand if you need it 24/7
You will arrive independently in Sicily’s capital Palermo, with the option to add an airport transfer to your booking. In the afternoon you will be treated to a street food tour of the city, and become more familiar with the island’s culture and signature flavors.
After enjoying breakfast in Palermo, today you will travel to Menfi, which is considered by many as the best wine area in all of Sicily. A private driver will take you to some of the island’s western villages, to give you a chance to see more of the varied scenery that Sicily is known for.
First, you will visit the beautiful town of Erice, situated 2461 feet above sea level with a diverse history that features Greek, Elymian, Norman, Phoenician and Roman inhabitants. There is a touch of mystery and magic running through the winding streets of Erice, with the famous poet Virgil citing the town as one of the places the Trojan hero Aeneas stopped on the voyage documented in the Aeneid.
Next, you will get the chance to stop off in Marsala, which is close to an intriguing archaeological site, or the small islands of Mozia and Mothia. For lunch, you will eat at the historic Florino winery, which was originally built by Vincenzo Florio in 1832.
The Florio family have created a unique winery experience here in the Marsala area, with their selection of modern flavours and the engaging different experiences on offer at the winery. You will take part in a tour of the estate’s wine cellars before enjoying a tasting experience that has been paired with complimentary Mediterranean flavours.
After lunch and your wine tasting, your driver will take you to the Planeta Winery Resort in Menfi, where you will be staying for the next two nights.
At the Planeta Winery Resort, spend your morning enjoying the estate’s infinity pool and its views of the surrounding vineyards and distant ocean, before taking part in a cooking class that will use classic Sicilian flavours and ingredients. This class will be followed by a tour of the estate’s vineyards, and a guided wine tasting of the different products that are made onsite.
You will learn all about the research that goes into the production of local wines in Sicily, which blends trusted techniques from the past with modern innovation. Maintaining the high standards that have established wineries for centuries is very important, but winemakers must also balance this with meeting international standards as they invent new flavours and test out new methods.
You will travel to an archaeological site near Selinunte in the afternoon, and enjoy a guided tour of Europe’s largest collection of archaeological remains. These ruins are considered some of the most important in the whole area and are perched on top of a hill that overlooks the surrounding ocean. They come from a 7th-century settlement and used to be the most westerly Greek outpost in Sicily.
You will return to your resort in the evening for dinner and another night in Melfi.
After your last resort breakfast in Melfi, you will be transferred to Regaleali, stopping off for a tour in Agrigento.
A private guide and trained historian will meet you on arrival in Agrigento, and take you around the famous UNESCO World Heritage site known as the Valley of the Temples. This site features spectacular Greek ruins, a Necropolis and the Garden of the Kolymbetra along with the seven temples that give the area its name. This park is a brilliant place to learn more about the Magna Graecia; a group of ancient Greek cities that were on the southern coast of Italy and Sicily, and which Agrigento was a part of.
From Agrigento, you will meet back up with your driver and arrive in Regaleali in the afternoon, where you will stay in a traditional Tuscan villa.
Today, your morning will be spent on the Tenuta Regaleali estate, where the Tasca d’Almerita family have been producing wine for generations. Their estate stretches between Palermo and Caltanissetta over the Sclafani Bagni hills, where cooler temperatures allow for the grapes to flourish.
900 metres above sea level the fruit slowly matures, with grape varieties that are native to the land as well as ones that come from France, Spain and Greece. The Tenuta Regaleali estate produces an impressive range of different wines from these vineyards, as well as upholding strong environmental values and championing biodiversity.
You will get the chance to visit this fantastic estate, guided by a member of the team who will explain how the area and the land are respected and cherished by all who work in the vineyards, leading to the passion every worker has for their produce. This is truly a wine company that feels like a family, with the owners referring to the vineyards as their ‘children’, and you will appreciate the wine tasting session after your tour even more because of this harmonious atmosphere.
After lunch and free time in the Regaleali area, you will travel to the coastal town of Milazzo, stopping briefly in Cefalu for a visit to this historic resort town by the sea. In Milazzo, you will catch a boat to Salina, which is the second-largest island of the volcanic archipelago it belongs to.
Floating in the turquoise Tyrrhenian Sea, Salina is an area of incredible natural beauty and has many shops, cafes and restaurants as well as its lovely beaches and bays. You will spend the night on this island after choosing where to have dinner as the sun sets.
Your sixth day in Sicily will consist of a visit to the Capofaro Winery and its surrounding vineyards, which is one of the five estates that is owned by the prominent Tasca d’Almerita winemaking family. This vineyard had only been in production for thirty years when it was purchased, and the accompanying building was restored to the grand estate it is now as the land was maintained.
After spending your time on this classic Mediterranean vineyard, you will have the rest of the day to do as you please. Climb the slopes of Salina’s dormant volcanoes, explore the town centre or just sit beside the sea and enjoy the views that sweep back to the horizon.
On your final day of this tour, you can choose how you want to spend your time, whether that is continuing to relax in Salina or taking an excursion to another of the Aeolian Islands. Popular attractions include the Cathedral of Saint Bartholomew or the Museo Eoliano on Lipari or tiny Panarea, that is the smallest Aeolian island but certainly the most beautiful.
Enjoy dinner in Salina, sampling some of the fresh seafood that will have been caught earlier that day, along with other special ingredients like pepper, tomatoes, capers and exquisite local wine.
After breakfast in Salina, you will leave the island by boat and be transferred to the Catania airport to travel home.