7 Nights – from AUD $1,899.00
In this week-long adventure, experience the best of the surreal Italian Island of Sicily, where you will stroll through the charming narrow streets of Taormina, explore the nearly 2500 year old Greek Amphitheater, and relax on the unbelievably gorgeous Mediterranean beaches of Isola Bella. Not to be out down by its bigger island brother Italy, the tiny European Union country of Malta welcomes you for the second half of your journey. Just over 50km to the South of Sicily, Malta is home to serene landscapes and beaches. It’s also home to oldest free-standing structures on Earth: the Megalithic temples of Malta, dating back to 5,500 BC. It’s an experience not to be missed.
DAY 1 – ARRIVE IN SICILY & TRANSFER TO TAORMINA
Today, arrive at your convenience to Catania. A driver will be there to greet you and provide transfer to your hotel in Taormina. Check in to your hotel right in the middle of the historic town of Taormina. Rest or get acquainted with this incredible Mediterranean village and the amazing island of Sicily. You will immediately experience the Sicilian lifestyle as you walk the streets and chat with locals. Later in the evening, you will meet your local guide who will be your friend and resource throughout this journey. We will head to a local restaurant for our group welcome dinner and introduce you to the Sicilian way of eating and lifestyle!
DAY 2 – EXPLORE GREEK AMPHITHEATER
Taormina is a historic city. It’s land has been controlled by dozens of civilizations over the the last 2,500 years, including the Greeks and Romans. You can smell the history in the air as you stroll through narrow cobblestone streets. You can see the powerful Mt. Etna in the backdrop from the public gardens of Taormina. The main attraction of the town is the ancient Greek Amphitheater. Originally built nearly 2500 years ago, the theater still hosts modern entertainment today. If you are in town during the summer be sure to check out a local artist perform in this historic setting.
DAY 3: RELAX LIKE A SICILIAN
Today is all about you. Enjoy the beach? Isola Bella is just a cable car ride away. You will find some of the clearest water in the world here, but be sure to bring your water shoes to this rocky beach. If you want a more leisurely day, get lost in the narrow streets of Taormina. There are plenty of little shops selling artwork, and Sicilian souvenirs mixed in with some of the finest Mediterranean restaurants you will ever find. Enjoy the evening! Go out into town for dinner or enjoy dinner and cocktails at your hotel restaurant.
DAY 4 – OFF TO MALTA
Start your day with a Sicilian specialty. The famous Bam Bar serves the preferred breakfast of locals: granita and brioche. Try one of the many flavors before you are on your way back to Catania to catch your flight to Malta. The flight is a quick one and before you know it you will land at Malta International Airport and shuttled to the smallest capital city in the European Union, Valletta. Get to know this amazing city and enjoy your evening of free time.
DAY 5 – OLD CAPITAL CITY
This afternoon, after lunch on own, travel to the old cities of Rabat and Mdina. In Rabat we find the island’s connection with St. Paul the Apostle. He was shipwrecked on the islands in approximately 60A.D. and consequently converted the inhabitants to Christianity. You’ll be visiting the catacombs which bear his name that include Christian, Pagan and Jewish grave sites. A short walk away we find a sweet shop and the most popular food shop on the island – it has arguably the best pastizzi on the island; just ask any Maltese and it will come in the top 2 for sure! We’ll do some food sampling here so please don’t fill up too much on lunch. Just down the street you’ll arrive at the main gates of Mdina. It’s Malta’s only medieval city which boasts a range of architecture and has such nicknames as “The Silent City”, “The Noble City” and “The Old City”. Enter the gates with your guide to find out much more.
DAY 6 – FISHING VILLAGE & ANCIENT TEMPLES
Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and a sleep in. Head out to Marsaxlokk fishing village to see the fish market in full swing. Every Sunday, fisherman bring their early morning catches in for locals and travelers alike for purchase or to enjoy the freshest of fish lunches at a local restaurant. Spend some time having a look around. This is also where you’ll be able to get all souvenirs. Enjoy an included fish lunch. Step back some 5500 years in a visit to the Ħaġar Qim & Mnajdra Temple sites. Excavation began in 1839 and they were thought to have been built to honor a fertility goddess. They are constructed in a way to coincide with the rising of the sun during the summer solstice. Nearby you’ll find the Blue Grotto – a collection of sea caverns. If the weather’s just right, we’ll head down to the boat launching area for a private tour of these caverns.
DAY 7 – GOZO
Enjoy breakfast at your hotel and then depart your hotel with private guide for the island of Gozo for the day. The crossing from Northern Malta to Gozo is 25 minutes on ferry. On this day, you will discover Gozo’s splendor by Quad Bike! Stops included via quad bike will be at the old salt pans, Ramla Bay and at a multitude of beautiful vistas. A picnic lunch will be included. The afternoon is yours to enjoy and explore with the assistance of your guide. Stroll through the backstreets and hike up to the citadel to get a 360 view of Gozo! The Citadel or Citadella is an area known to have been first fortified during the Bronze Age and later developed by the Phoenicians and continues development until, by Roman times, it had become a complex Acropolis. Up until the 18th Century, it was the only fortified refuge against attack for the inhabitants of the island.
DAY 8 – FAREWELL
Enjoy your last moments in Malta! After a fun filled week on the Sicilian & Maltese Islands, it’s time to say goodbye! We will see you soon!
What’s included in this tour:
- Listed Authentic Meals
- Expert Local Guide
- Luxury Boutique Hotels and Resorts
- All Transfers and Ground Transportation
- Entrance Fees
- Beach Access
What’s not included in this tour:
- Round-trip airfare from home country
- Travel insurance
- Extra drinks or dishes during meals
- Personal expenses (laundry, telephone, etc)
- Tips for guides and drivers ($10 per day per traveler)
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