Circumnavigation of Sicily

12 days
from
£9,280
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Trip code: 
ANS
Way to Travel:
Voyages
Activity:
Cultural Wonders
Group size:
45–95
Min age:
17

Sense the presence of the Knights in their military engineering and architectural feats.

Valletta, the fortress city "built by gentlemen for gentlemen" is the enchanting capital city of Malta. It was built by the valliant Knights of St. John in the 16th century.

Sense the presence of the Knights in their military engineering and architectural feats they left behind such as Forts, bastons, watchtowers, acquaducts, churches, cathedrals, art, furniture, silverware, and sculpture. Bequeathed by the Knights of St. John to the country and the world is the Maltese cross which has over time become one of the best-known faces of Malta.

Discover, Experience, and understand one of Italy's Southern pearls as we cruise the Strait of Messina, the Ionian, Tyrrhenian, and the Mediterranean seas round  Sicily, Italy's largest island.

Sicily is endowed with outstanding natural beauty. Enjoy the Mountains, Hills, incredible colours, crystal-clear water, little islands, volcanoes, archeological sites, and the exuberance and warmth of the island evident in it's food.

Highlights

  • Attend cooking demonstrations on how to prepare traditional Sicilian dishes, plus enjoy wine tastings of vintages from the Marsala and Licata regions.
  • Enjoy ample free time to stroll through picturesque coastal towns with many opportunities to dine ashore on your own.
  • Tour Monreale’s impressive 12th-century Cathedral; hailed as Italy’s most beautiful Norman church, the interior is covered with intricate mosaics, gold leaf, and stone intarsia.
  • Explore the exquisite Greek and Roman ruins of Agrigento and Syracuse—both UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
  • Cruise among the scenic Aeolian Islands and enjoy up-close views of still-active Stromboli Volcano.

Key information

  • 12 Days land only
  • Small-Ship Cruise
  • 95 Guests
  • All accommodation included
  • All meals included
  • Countries visited: Malta, Italy

What's included

  • Daily activity options including cultural tours, nature walks, cooking demonstrations, and wine tasting
  • All gratuities
  • All accommodations
  • World-class lecture and expedition team
  • All onboard meals and group meals ashore, including soft drinks, beer, and wine with lunch and dinner
  • All entrance fees, taxes, and landing and port charges
  • Arrival and departure transfers on group dates
  • Gift certificates for recommended expedition gear and reading materials
  • Medical expense coverage and emergency evacuation insurance

What's not included

  • Airfare from your home city/Valletta and Valletta/home city
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Airport arrival and departure taxes
  • Transfers for independent arrivals and departures
  • Passport and/or visa fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar charges, and alcoholic beverages (other than listed at left)
  • Email/Internet/fax/telephone charges
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Itinerary

Valletta, Malta
to
Valletta, Malta
  • Day 1

    Arrive in Malta

    Arrive in Malta this afternoon and transfer to our hotel with the remainder of the day at leisure. This evening, attend a welcome reception with dinner and overnight at our hotel.

    Accommodation: Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Dinner
  • Day 2

    Valletta / Embark Serenissima

    After breakfast, explore historic Valletta, Malta’s enchanting capital city built by the Knights of St. John in the 16th century. Visit the National Museum of Archaeology, the Grand Master’s Palace, St. John’s Co-Cathedral, and the Temple of Hagar Qim, a complex of monolithic edifices built between 3600 and 2500 BC. Embark the Serenissima this evening.

    Accommodation:  Serenissima

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 3

    Take a drive through scenic countryside to the charming town of Ragusa

    Take a drive through scenic countryside to the charming town of Ragusa, recognized by UNESCO for its outstanding Baroque architecture. Wander through the historic center, a tangle of alleys and plazas that tumble down a dramatic gorge, to view elegant palaces and elaborately decorated churches. After lunch at a local restaurant, head to a nearby farm to sample almonds and fresh ricotta. Return to Pozzallo for dinner aboard the ship.

    Accommodation: Serenissima

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    This morning, enjoy a guided tour of Agrigento, a World Heritage Site.

    This morning, enjoy a guided tour of Agrigento, a World Heritage Site. The exquisite architecture of the Valley of the Temples dates back to the 4th and 5th centuries BC and includes the Temple of Zeus—the largest Doric temple from Greek antiquity. Return to the ship for lunch and attend informative lectures as the ship cruises toward Trapani.

    Accommodation: Serenissima

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Trapani, Sicily

    Step ashore in the thriving fishing town of Trapani, then depart overland to visit Erice, a charming medieval village perched high on a mountain-top with stunning views of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Alternatively, visit the ruins of Segesta, once the center of the ancient Elymian civilization, and home to a magnificent Doric temple. Both groups will sample olive oil at a farm in Fontanasalsa, before returning to the ship for lunch. This afternoon, drive to Marsala for a walking tour. Make a stop at Cantine Florio, one of Sicily’s ancient wine estates, to enjoy local specialties accompanied by Marsala wines.

    Accommodation: Serenissima

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 6

    Palermo, Sicily

    Palermo is famous for its jumbled and picturesque streets punctuated with ornate Baroque churches, domed Arab mosques, and Byzantine mosaics. Visit the impressive 12th-century Cathedral and the Palatine Chapel in the Norman castle; today the building serves as the seat of the Sicilian government. Highlights of your walking tour through the town center include the famous Ballaro food market, Massimo Theater, Quattro Canti, Town Hall, and Martorana Church. Then enjoy an aperitif at the Palazzo Gangi, noted for its Sicilian Baroque ballroom decorated with Murano chandeliers, gold fittings, and glittering mirrors. This afternoon, you are free to explore Palermo on your own, or join a guided tour of Monreale’s fabled Cathedral. Built in 1174 and hailed as Italy’s most beautiful Norman church, the interior is covered with mosaics, gold leaf, and stone intarsia.

    Accommodation: Serenissima

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Cefalu, Sicily

    Situated on the northern coast, Cefalù is of Greek origin; its name, meaning “head,” derives from its position below a precipitous rocky headland. A walking tour includes the splendid Norman-Arab Cathedral, begun in 1131 and famous for its glittering Byzantine mosaics; a medieval wash-house; and the Osterio Magno, the 11th-century residence of King Ruggiero II. Lunch is a highlight today as you join a local chef at Tasca Lanza Estate who will teach you how to prepare traditional Sicilian dishes. There will also be time for wine sampling and a chance to explore the lovely grounds of the Estate, or to simply relax among your scenic surroundings.

    Accommodation: Serenissima

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    Lipari, Aeolian Islands / Stromboli

    Take a walking tour through the center of Lipari to reach the impressive fort, built in 1556 upon the ruins of an ancient Greek acropolis. Within the fort walls you will find the superb Aeolian Archaeological Museum and the lovely Norman St. Bartolomeo Church. Return to the ship for an afternoon of cruising through the lovely Aeolian Islands en route to active Stromboli Volcano for sunset photos, with the chance to watch for the Stromboli “fireworks” as darkness falls.

    Accommodation: Serenissima

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 9

    Taormina / Mt. Etna

    This morning, disembark in Taormina and board coaches for an excursion to 9,500-foot-high Mt. Etna, Europe’s largest active volcano. Take a cable car up Etna’s pock-marked slopes, then continue in 4x4 vehicles to reach the main crater at 9,000 feet, with the opportunity for a short hike. In the afternoon, a walking tour of charming Taormina takes you to the 3rd-century Greco-Roman Theater, renowned for acoustic effects that make it a favorite concert venue to this day. Then take a stroll along the lively pedestrian-only Corso Umberto and explore its many narrow off-shooting lanes that lead to pretty piazzas lined with shops.

    Accommodation: Serenissima

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 10

    Morgantina, Sicily

    Today you have your choice of two tours. An inland drive takes you through a series of photogenic villages to Piazza Armerina, famous for its superb Roman mosaics in the Villa Romana del Casale. Enjoy lunch at a Sicilian restaurant near the Greek site of Morgantina, then tour the ruins and visit the small, but excellent Aidone Museum. Or, choose a city tour that visits the famous morning fish market in Catania’s town square where a colorful variety of local products are on display. After lunch aboard the ship, or on your own in town, drive to Piazza Armerina for a tour Villa Romana del Casale.

    Accommodation: Serenissima

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 11

    Syracuse, Sicily

    Founded by the Corinthians in the 8th century BC, Syracuse was one of the most powerful Greek cities—defending its sovereignty against such rivals as Carthage, the Etruscans, and the Romans, who later overtook the city, followed by the Arabs. Begin at the Saint John Catacombs with their maze of underground passageways then drive to the Archaeological Park, a World Heritage Site. Highlights include the Roman Amphitheater of Augustus; the Ear of Dionysius, a grotto with an extraordinary echo; and the massive 15,000-seat Greek Theater. Return to the ship, at port in Ortygia, for lunch, before striking out for a walking tour of the old town. Highlights include the ruins of the 6th-century BC Apollo Temple—the oldest in Sicily—and the Piazza Duomo, built around the ancient Temple of Minerva (Athena). There will be time to explore the small food market, or enjoy free time on your own, before heading back to the ship.

    Accommodation: Serenissima

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 12

    Valletta, Malta / Disembark

    Disembark in Valletta this morning and transfer to the airport for your independent homeward flight.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Visas are not required of U.S. citizens for entry in to Malta and Italy for stays less than 90 days.

PLEASE NOTE: Citizens of countries other than the U.S. should check with the nearest consulates for specific visa and entry requirements for their entire itinerary, including both the group arrangements and any travel prior to or after the program.

Vaccinations

Malta

There are no specific health risks.

Italy

There are no specific health risks.

Weather

This expedition is during the dry season. Expect weather to be sunny and warm with highs in the high 70s°F to mid-80s°F.

The following are average high/low temperatures in September and October for selected locations on our itinerary:

Location High Low
Valletta, Malta 80ºF (26ºC) 69ºF (21ºC)
Trapani, Sicily 85ºF (29ºC) 65ºF (18ºC)
Palermo, Sicily 84ºF (28ºC) 67ºF (19ºC)
Taormina, Sicily 85ºF (29ºC) 65ºF (18ºC)
Syracuse, Sicily 84ºF (28ºC) 66ºF (19ºC)

Is this trip for you?

This tour is operated in partnership with our sister company Zegrahm Expeditions. As such the departures are not exclusive to Exodus and groups may be a mixture of Exodus, Zegrahm Expeditions, and other clients. This trip is booked through Exodus and you will receive the same award winning customer service that you would expect. Zagrahm Expeditions operate with the same core principles used by Exodus and champion the benefits of group travel.

For most activities, a moderate level of exertion is required. Many excursions include walking tours through archaeological sites or medieval villages, with uneven paths and cobblestone streets. You must be able to walk, unaided, for one to three miles, navigate stairs that may be uneven and without hand rails, and stand during excursions or for long periods of time. Temperatures will range from the mid-80s°F to the low 70s°F.

Based on the expeditionary nature of this trip, there may be ongoing enhancements to this itinerary. Unless otherwise noted, daily excursion options are included in the cost of the trip. We do our best to adhere to the scheduled itinerary, but in the spirit of our expeditionary style of travel we may deviate slightly to take full advantage of encounters with the destination and its people, culture, and wildlife.

The expediton team is especially chosen for this voyage, our team of expert leaders and lecturers serves to bring a comprehensive educational component to your adventure through lectures, guided excursions, and daily recaps.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Sicily Cruise - The Serenissima

Built in 1960 and refurbished in 2018, the Serenissima is a comfortable expedition vessel. Public spaces include two lounges (one with a library and games), a single-seating dining room, and elegant bar. Outside decks feature a small gym, Jacuzzi, and a sun deck where meals are served in pleasant weather. All suites feature ocean views, en suite bathroom, wardrobe, vanity table, television, and personal safe.

GENERAL
• Five decks of guest facilities.
- Deck 3 – guest suites and doctor’s office.
- Deck 4 – guest suites.
- Deck 5 – Andrea Lounge, Harald Lounge, dining room, reception, bar, small gym (treadmills only), and Jacuzzi.
- Deck 6 – guest suites and outdoor seating.
- Deck 7 – guest suites and bridge.
• Stairs service all decks. The elevator serves decks 3 to 6.
• The bridge is available to visit most times throughout the day, contingent upon weather, security, and navigation conditions.
• Smoking is permitted only on outside decks.

SUITES
• All suites feature ocean views and have either two fixed twin beds or one double-bed, (single suites have a single, fixed twin) a well-appointed en suite bathroom, closets, vanity table, television, personal safe, hair dryer, assorted toiletries, and European style outlets (two round prongs) at 220 volts. There is a 110/220 volt outlet for electric shavers in the bathroom.
• Category 1 single suites (304, 312, 317, and 402) range from 109 - 136 square feet and have one or two portholes. Suite 501 is 76 square feet and has a window.
• Deck 3 suites range from 109 - 211 square feet and have one or two portholes.
• Deck 4 category 3 suites range from 124 - 198 square feet with portholes or windows. Suite 407 is 274 square feet with two windows.
• Deck 5 category 4 suites average 172 square feet and have two windows.
• Deck 6 category 5 suites average 230 square feet with three windows. Category 6 suites are suites are 244 square
feet and feature seven windows. Suite 604 is 162 square feet, with two windows.
• Deck 7 suites range from 273 - 284 square feet and have a window and patio doors leading to private balconies.

DINING
• The main restaurant can accommodate all guests at one seating.
• Most diets can be catered for on board, but special dietary requests must be made in advance.
• Breakfast and lunch are served buffet-style.
• Dinner is served in the main restaurant with four, a la carte courses. When weather permits, meals can also be served on deck.
• Afternoon tea is served in the lounge and coffee and tea are available between 7:00 - 11:00 pm.

SERVICES
• Serenissima carries a fleet of Zodiacs.
• Laundry services (no dry cleaning) and a small doctor’s office are available on board. Rates are posted.
• The Euro is the currency used on board. Visa, MasterCard, and American Express are accepted for payment of shipboard accounts.
• Wi-fi access is available in public areas.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

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Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]