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Italy, Sicily – Wine Discovery Tour & Salina

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From AUD: $8,339

Duration: 10 Days

Offer Expires: Dec 31, 2020

Short Description

This private, luxury wine tour is for those who have a keen interest in all that tastes fabulous. Spend ten days on the islands of Sicily and Salina in pursuit of the unique wines of each. From Etna Rosso to Malvasia della Lipari, cooking classes and Modica chocolate this is a beautiful exploration of Italy's southern gems.

This is a fabulous package for those who are looking to get the most from ten days in Sicily, specifically the wine aficionado, and the foodie. Combined with boutique accommodation, private guides and ancient history this is a beautiful way to explore the island. The extension to Salina is a lovely way to finish off the trip, allowing some down time, or further exploration if you prefer, of another (albeit lesser known, but perhaps more stunning) island. A high end experience.

Day One Arrival
Welcome to Sicily! Arrival at Catania airport and private transfer to the hotel in Ragusa. Alternative: If you arrive in the morning we can organize a visit of Catania and lunch or a visit of the Ciclopes’ Coast with lunch at the seaside. Check-in. Dinner and overnight stay.
Overnight Ragusa
Meals D

Day Two Cerasulolo di Vittoria Winery & Ragusa Ibla
After breakfast, meet your private driver in the lobby of your hotel. Transfer to Valle dell’Acate, an ancient winery that produces the famous Cerasuolo di Vittoria (the only DOCG in Sicily). The atmosphere of this place will give you the opportunity to enjoy the countryside colours and smells. Visit of the vinery and wine tasting held by Giovanni, a Sicilian sommelier who will introduce you to the secrets of the wines produced in the area. Then transfer to COS winery. The Azienda Agricola COS works with biodynamic principals of agriculture using the ancient traditional techniques to cultivate vines. Very interesting and unique is the ageing of some wines in ancient amphoras! Visit the winery, and lunch with wine tasting and food pairing. In the afternoon you will discover Ragusa Ibla in the area that has been listed on the “Val di Noto” UNESCO World Heritage since 2002.
Ragusa Ibla has the magic atmosphere of a very special baroque town, rich with treasures around every corners: spectacular baroque churches characterized by tower facades and noble palaces of “mascheroni”, garygoyles and statues of men and women who gaze at you from the balconies. Among the others, you will enjoy the Dome Square with the St. George’s Dome, masterpiece of baroque architecture on the island and La Rocca Palace.
Late afternoon make a short stop at the local handcraft “bottega” of Sicilian horse carts, where the artisans Biagio and Damiano still create and paint these regional icons. They will proudly tell you how they carry on this ancient tradition and how their work has captured the attention of Italian fashion designers, with whom they are now in partnership. Following will be a private tour of a noble palace, where the Baron Arezzo will introduce us to the 19th century nobles who still survive in today’s society.
Before going back to the hotel, there will be a “gelateria”, (ice cream shop) stop, to taste the “granita siciliana”, which is essentially frozen ice in different flavors such as almond, lemon, coffee, just to name the most traditional ones.
Return to the hotel at the end of the day. Your dinner will be at Locanda Don Serafino ** Michelin restaurant.
Overnight Ragusa
Meals B,L,D

Day Three Modica, Marilina Winery, Scicli & Aromi Garden
A day to explore the magnificent baroque architecture of Val di Noto. After breakfast meet your private guide and driver in the hotel lobby for departure to discover two towns more in the local area that have been on the “Val di Noto” UNESCO World Heritage since 2002. Again, their listing is for the late-baroque architecture of their monuments. Modica and Scicli were both rebuilt after the 1693 earthquake that destroyed South-Eastern Sicily. You will first travel to Modica. First stop at “Belvedere”, where you can take a panoramic picture of the whole city centre that lies on and beneath the hill in the valley. This ancient capital city of the “Contea di Modica”, is a town rich with magnificent churches and their inspiring domes. Bell towers and intricate facades punctuate red-tiled roofs and one is struck by the uniform beauty of the whole. A chocolate tasting experience at the oldest chocolate factory of Sicily will be a nice moment: this sort of chocolate is very ancient and dates back to the Aztec period and done without milk! You will see how the chocolate is made and you may taste about twenty different flavors of chocolate and other typical Sicilian sweets!
The tour continues to Marilina Winery, famous for its excellent bio and bio vegan wines. The owner, Federica, will introduce you to the winery and will hold a wine tasting in a very family atmosphere.
Then you visit Scicli, a town sung about by the Sicilian poet Elio Vittorini as the “real soul of Sicily”. From the main square, you will admire the St. Matthews’ hill, site of the ancient town founded by the Greeks and inhabited until the 1693 earthquake. Not far from the main square, you can admire St. Bartholomew’s Church and the Chiafura area, where hundreds of ancient grottos are the frame for this wonderful baroque church. Your walk continues to the magnificent Beneventano Palace, one of the most beautiful baroque palaces of Sicily, and then to the “Mormino Penna Street“ with its wonderful churches.
At the end of the tour you will appreciate a very special panorama in the Aromi Garden, not far from Scicli. Here you'll be welcomed by the owner, Enrico, who will show you through his farmhouse that produces and sells more than 200 different varieties of plants belonging to different families from the Sicilian South-Eastern coast and from all around the world: ornamental sage, thyme, lavender, rosemary, santoline, helichrysum and others. Take a leisurely stroll wine in hand, through the gardens and drink in a spectacular view of the Mediterranean. Then, back to the Ragusa hotel. Dinner at leisure.
Overnight Ragusa
Meals B

Day Four Hands-On Cooking Class & Siracusa
After breakfast, check out and meet your private driver in the lobby of your hotel and prepare for departure to Siracusa. This is a unique town famous for its Greek Heritage, as it once was the capital city of the so called “Magna Grecia”. Later in the morning we will undertake a unique experience with Mrs Fiora for a hands-on cooking Class in Ortigia. The experience begins with a visit to the fish market where you will discover some typical vegetables in season and Mediterranean fish, plus have the chance to taste local cheeses. With your ingredients, make your way to Mrs Fiora's home, where with her guidance you will prepare some typical Sicilian food: but it is the renowned Sicilian hospitality will make the difference here! The class will conclude with an aperitif and lunch with your cooking creations.
In the afternoon, with your private guide you will visit the archeological park with its fabulously preserved theatre. Here they still play Greek tragedies and comedies according to the Greek tradition for drama, which is at sunset. The Dionysus’ Ear and the Roman amphitheatre are also testament to the importance of this city in ancient times. After the visit you will be transferred to your Taormina hotel, for check in.
Overnight Taormina
Meals B,L

Day Five Mt Etna, Benanti & Murgo Wineries
A day to experience the essence of this region: black stone and Etna wines.
After breakfast, meet your private driver and guide in the lobby of your hotel and depart for Mt Etna, the highest active volcano in Europe. Today you will stop at a height of about 1800 metres to walk on the Silvestri Craters, enchanting tourists for their so-called “lunar landscape”. Weather conditions permitting, we will make our way to the top craters by cableway. Then transfer to one of the best Etna wineries where you have the possibility to taste the renowned Etna wines, unique for their mineral characteristics, due to the volcanic soils. The awarded Benanti winery produces both red and white cru wines from the vineyards located on different areas of the volcano. The tasting will be done with a food pairing in an exclusive location. Next stop will be Murgo winery where you can relax tasting a good glass of Murgo Brut. They are the first to produce a brut from Etna wines and continue to experiment with the indigenous varieties for the best result. Return to the hotel. Dinner at leisure
Overnight Taormina
Meals B,L

Day Six Graci, Fessina & Taormina
A very special day to discover the Etna wines of the northern slope and Taormina panoramas. After breakfast, meet your private driver in the lobby of your hotel and depart for the northern slopes of Mt Etna. Your wine tour begins with a visit to Graci Winery. Here they focus on cultivating grapes which are traditional and indigenous to Mt Etna, particularly at an altitude between 600 and 1000 metres above sea level. The owner, Riccardo, will explain how they make wines that are expressive of their environment and will host a wine tasting inside his ancient cellar.
The tour continues to Fessina estate, at 670 metres above sea level, and extends over about seven hectares. The vineyard is unusual in that it is surrounded by two semicircular, centuries-old lava flows, which protect the vineyards and create a unique microenvironment. The wines can surprise for the richness and complexity of their perfumes, together with an interesting and elegant structure. Enjoy a wine tasting and a special gastronomic experience with local homemade food.
At the end of the wine tasting, depart for Taormina, called “Pearl of Sicily”, and since the 19th century has been famous in Europe as favorite retreat for travelers from all over the world. On the journey back, take in spectaular views of the Greek Theatre, Mt Etna and the Bay of Taormina. Once in the city enjoy a walk on the lively main street, Corso Umberto, with wonderful monuments and beautiful shops. Dinner at leisure.
Overnight Taormina
Meals B,L

Day Seven Salina
After breakfast check out and a private transfer will take you from the your Taormina hotel to Milazzo Harbour. You will then depart by hydrofoil to Salina island. Arrival in Salina and private transfer to your home for the next few days.
Overnight Capofaro Resort, Regaleali Estate Salina
Meals B

Day Eight Salina
Relax on the island
Overnight Capofaro Resort, Regaleali Estate Salina
Meals B

Day Nine Salina
Relax on the island
Overnight Capofaro Resort, Regaleali Estate Salina
Meals B

Day Ten Departure
Breakfast. Check-out. Private transfer to the harbor and then transfer to Milazzo by hydrofoil. Arrival and private transfer to Catania airport.
Meals B

Salina is a green and fertile land characterised by its twin (inactive) volcanoes, Monte Fossa delle Felci and Monte dei Porri that gave the island its original Greek name "Didyme" meaning twins. Gastronomically, Salina is best known for three products: fish, capers and a sweet dessert wine called Malvasia delle Lipari. The surrounding sea is simply beautiful. Though many of the beaches are rocky rather than sandy, the water is extremely clean and home to a wide variety of sea animals, plants, caves and submerged volcanic craters. The bay at Pollara (where several scenes of “Il Postino” were filmed) is one of the most splendid in the entire Aeolian archipelago.

Things to Do
A Locanda surrounded by Malvasia delle Lipari vineyards looking out to sea. At Capofaro, you can immerse yourself in the work of the vineyard, from pruning to harvest, as simple observers or by actively participating (when it is harvest time). Or you can choose to take a walk among the grapevines, with a sommelier who tells you about the most important moments of working with the vines. Staying here is a continuous discovery, and to make your Capofaro Regaleali wine experience truly complete, they organize for the guests a variety of tastings of the Malvasia wines, expression of the grapes and the land they live and work in.
There is also the possibility to visit the nearby Aeolian Islands by boat, or alternatively you may also take an excursion to Stromboli, where you can hike to the crater's top, arriving just on sunset. Or another possibility is to visit Stromboli village, have dinner in a local restaurant and then admire the amazing nightly eruption sitting on a boat, while drinking a glass of Malvasia.

Private transfers throughout
Overnight stays in four star hotels
Private driver/guide throughout
Meals & tastings listed in the program
Excursions, walks and tours as listed
Return hydrofoil tickets to Salina

Entry ticket to Archeological Park Siracusa EUR10
Entry ticket to Siracusa Dome EUR2
Entry ticket to Archeological Park Taormina EUR10
Cableway Mt Etna EUR62
Beverages during meals (except for the tastings and cooking class)
City taxes paid directly to hotel
Excursions on Salina

Departure Dates
This is a private tour and can depart any day of the year. Just ask us to check availability for dates that fit in with your plans.

From $8339 per person based on twin/double

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