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  • Departing from?Dublin + 3
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  • When?March 2015
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Home / Sicily & the Aeolian Islands - 7 Nights
Sicily & the Aeolian Islands - 7 Nights
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Sicily & the Aeolian Islands - 7 Nights

  • 7 Night Holiday
  • Half Board
View Dates & Prices

Located off the toe of Italy, Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. Much of the land is hilly and has been cultivated, with charming seaside towns and villages located along the coastline. North of the island lies the Aeolian Island archipelago, a group of volcanic islands that exhibit incredible natural beauty, earning them a place on UNESCO's World Heritage list. Sicily is home to Mount Etna which dominates the skyline of Catania.

Sicily is home to many important archaeological sites and ancient architectural wonders, that illustrate its intriguing history.  On your busy but rewarding excursion programme, you will see traces of former civilisations including Phoenician settlements, Roman amphitheatres, Greek temples and Aragonese churches.  Sicily's chequered past has resulted in a rich and unique culture. The first Greek colony in Sicily, Giardini Naxos, is now a popular seaside resort and will be your base for a 7 night stay.

 

Coach transfer to and from Belfast (Glengall Street) to Dublin Airport on selected dates.

 

Practical Information for this holiday

Currency
Euro (€)     
Local Time
Ireland/UK Time +1 hour
Passport
A valid passport is required for this holiday. EU citizens do not need a visa, however non-EU citizens should check requirements. 
Airport
Catania airport is located approx. 1 hour from your hotel in Giardini Naxos.
Climate

The coastline climate in Sicily offers fresh, hot summers and mild winters.

Food & Drink
When you fancy a snack, try the Arancini, tasty fried rice balls filled with various ingredients, from meat to mozzarella. For bigger appetites, freshly caught seafood is always a good choice, or try a local pasta favourite ; Pasta con le Sarde – made with sardines, fennel, pine nuts, raisins and toasted breadcrumbs in olive oil. Cannoli, a rolled pastry filled with ricotta and candied fruits is a classic Sicilian sweet treat. Accompany your meal with a robust Nero d’Avola or a light Grillo, just some of the excellent wines produced on the island. To finish, enjoy a glass of Marsala, Sicily’s renowned fortified wine.
Average Prices for Region
  • Coffee: €1.20
  • Beer: €3.00
  • Glass of wine: €3.00
  • Main course: €9.50
  • Soft Drink: €1.50
  • Bottled Water: €0.50
Packing List
  • Your valid passport
  • Sun cream
  • A continental plug adaptor
  • A small backpack
  • A sun hat
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Camera
Recommended Reading

Il Gattopardo (The Leopard) by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa

The Sicilian by Mario Puzo

The Shape of Water by Andrea Camilleri   

Cinema Paradiso (film, 1988 ) Dir. Giuseppe Tornatore

Holiday highlights

Taormina

A colourful maze of narrow streets and terraces, teeming with cafes, restaurants and boutiques, Taormina sits atop a steep hill, with panoramic views of the Mediterranean Sea and Mount Etna. The remarkable Greco-Roman amphitheatre, set into the hillside, is open to the public. A cable car provides a transport link to sea level.

Mount Etna

Europe's largest volcano and one of the world’s most active, Mount Etna dominates the landscape around Taormina. At over 3.300 metres high, Etna and its slopes are part of the national park, Parco Naturale dell'Etna. With alpine forests and deserts of lava on its upper levels, the volcano’s lower slopes are home to vineyards, orchards and even an 18 hole golf course.

The Aeolian Islands

The impossibly blue sea and dramatically beautiful landscapes are among the reasons why the directors Roberto Rossellini (Stromboli) and Michael Radford (Il Postino) chose the Aeolian Islands as the location for their memorable films.  The island’s fishing communities welcome holidaymakers, Italian fashionistas and film stars alike, throughout the summer season. The seven island archipelago, recognised by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, is part of a volcanic ridge measuring 200km, which stretches from Mt. Etna to Mt. Vesuvius.

Roman Villa in Piazza Armerina

Located about 3km outside the town of Piazza Armeria, and built in the first quarter of the 4th century. The villa has a most unusual layout and contains the richest, largest and most complex collection of Roman mosaics on the world.

A Sweet Treat

Cassata is a Sicilian chilled dessert featuring typical ingredients of the island, including ricotta, marsala wine, almonds and candied fruits.  The recipe is said to have arrived with the island’s Arab occupation.  Today there are many regional variations, but it’s still decadent and delicious!

Practical Information for this holiday

Currency
Euro (€)     
Local Time
Ireland/UK Time +1 hour
Passport
A valid passport is required for this holiday. EU citizens do not need a visa, however non-EU citizens should check requirements. 
Airport
Catania airport is located approx. 1 hour from your hotel in Giardini Naxos.
Climate

The coastline climate in Sicily offers fresh, hot summers and mild winters.

Food & Drink
When you fancy a snack, try the Arancini, tasty fried rice balls filled with various ingredients, from meat to mozzarella. For bigger appetites, freshly caught seafood is always a good choice, or try a local pasta favourite ; Pasta con le Sarde – made with sardines, fennel, pine nuts, raisins and toasted breadcrumbs in olive oil. Cannoli, a rolled pastry filled with ricotta and candied fruits is a classic Sicilian sweet treat. Accompany your meal with a robust Nero d’Avola or a light Grillo, just some of the excellent wines produced on the island. To finish, enjoy a glass of Marsala, Sicily’s renowned fortified wine.
Average Prices for Region
  • Coffee: €1.20
  • Beer: €3.00
  • Glass of wine: €3.00
  • Main course: €9.50
  • Soft Drink: €1.50
  • Bottled Water: €0.50
Packing List
  • Your valid passport
  • Sun cream
  • A continental plug adaptor
  • A small backpack
  • A sun hat
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Camera
Recommended Reading

Il Gattopardo (The Leopard) by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa

The Sicilian by Mario Puzo

The Shape of Water by Andrea Camilleri   

Cinema Paradiso (film, 1988 ) Dir. Giuseppe Tornatore

Trip Itinerary - Day by day

Day 1 - Travel to Sicily

Full Day

Travel to Sicily

Upon landing in Catania, you will be met by our local representative in the airport, who will escort you to your hotel, in Giardini Naxos.  As you travel to your hotel, your guide will share some information about the local region, suggest activities for you to enjoy and answer any questions you may have.  

Day 2 - Etna & Taormina

Morning – Mount Etna

After breakfast you will meet your guide and travel to the slopes of magnificent Mount Etna. 1900 metres above sea level, the panoramic views over the coast and countryside are breathtaking and a wonderful photo opportunity. 

Afternoon - Taormina

This afternoon you will visit Taormina, a charming coastal town just 6km from Giardini Naxos.  Explore the colourful maze of narrow streets and terraces, and enjoy a guided tour of Taormina’s famous Greek Theatre.

Day 3 - Catania & Piazza Armerina

Morning

Catania

Enjoy a guided tour of the colourful, bustling city of Catania and admire its elegant Piazza del Duomo, home to the famous Fountain of the Elephant. 

Afternoon

Piazza Armerina

Afterwards, you will travel to the lovely inland town of Piazza Armerina, for a visit to the renowned Villa Romana del Casale, famous for its stunning mosaics.

Day 4 - At Leisure

Full Day

At Leisure

Enjoy a day at leisure. Relax and enjoy the superb range of facilities at your hotel, take a stroll along the beach, and dip your toes in the warm waters of the Mediterranean Sea!

Day 5 - Siracusa

Full Day

Siracusa

Today you will visit the spellbinding city of Siracusa, whose historic heart is located on the island of Ortigia. Sightseeing highlights include the Arethusa Fountain and Cathedral, as well as the city's UNESCO protected archaeological area, with its Greek Theatre, the Latomie and the spectacular Ear of Dionysius.

Day 6 - Aeolian Islands of Lipari & Vulcano

Full Day

Aeolian Islands of Lipari & Vulcano

Today, you will enjoy a wonderful adventure to the Aeolian Islands, famous for appearing in Greek mythical literature. You will set off from Milazzo in the Northeast of Sicily, starting with a visit to Lipari, where you can explore the charming old town. Then you will sail to Vulcano, where you can admire the rock formations, caves and crystal clear waters of Aeolian legend, before returning to Milazzo, viewing the picturesque village of Gelso and its lighthouse en route.

Day 7 - At Leisure

Full Day

At Leisure

Take a day relax by the bright blue sea at Giardini Naxos, and perhaps make an independent return visit to nearby Taormina. Your guide will be happy to make suggestions of places to see and things to do in the area.

Day 8 - Return Home

Full Day

Return home

Today you will transfer to the airport for your flight home, with guide assistance.

* Please note that the order of your excursions on the itinerary above is provisional and subject to change

Hotel & accommodation available for this trip

Atahotel Naxos Beach 4

Atahotel Naxos Beach  is an attractive hotel complex in Giardini Naxos, a popular coastal town in eastern Sicily.  It is ideally located for visits to Mount Etna, Taormina and many more of Sicily’s famous sights.  Built over an area of 14 hectares which extend... read more read more read more

Atahotel Naxos Beach  is an attractive hotel complex in Giardini Naxos, a popular coastal town in eastern Sicily.  It is ideally located for visits to Mount Etna, Taormina and many more of Sicily’s famous sights.  Built over an area of 14 hectares which extends to the seashore, the property is set in lush gardens decorated with citrus trees, olive groves and abundant flowers. The resort’s impressive range of leisure options include swimming pools, bars, fitness centre and seasonal entertainments. 

Atahotel Naxos Beach Standard Rooms, each with patio or terrace, are located in the hotel’s gardens, in two storey blocks of 9 – 12 rooms. There are upgrades available to Main Building rooms (supplement applies). 

Hotel address
Atahotel Naxos Beach
Via Recanati, 26
Messina

Giardini Naxos
View available dates for this hotel

*Some hotel facilities are seasonally operated and may not be available at the time of your stay. Charges may apply for certain facilities.

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Price, taxes, flight times & availability are subject to change. E&OE. Price based on per person, sharing. Single Supplement cost may apply.

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  • Baggage from €40.00
  • Insurance from €12.50
  • Single Supplement from €149.00

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Why us

  • The ease of booking a complete itinerary.
  • We offer you affordable luxury.
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Our guides

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  • Local experts, enthusiastic about their area.
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  • Innovative itineraries with amazing excursions.

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