Noto, Taormina, Salina, Catania, Marzamemi
Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures.
Combine traditional flavor with ancient history, and Baroque charm with rich landscapes during your custom-tailored wine tour of Sicily for seniors. The indelible marks of ancient settlers gave rise to stunning culinary delights while elegant towns capture the grandeur of former kingdoms. Your immersive tour will highlight the treasured sunsets in Noto and luxurious coastline at Marzamemi, as well as the bountiful vineyards that spread across the foothills of Mount Etna. You will capture the spirit...
Noto – Introductory Tour of the Baroque City
The city of Noto glints and glistens along the main street of Corso Vittorio Emanuele as the elegant palaces and churches from the 17th century retain their Baroque charms. In the evening, the soft sunlight spreads over the facades of the city turning the red-gold colors into an ethereal glow. Your private transfer will greet you at Catania-Fontanarossa Airport upon your arrival in Sicily and escort you to your gorgeous accommodations at the heart of Noto. Before your guide meets you in the hotel lobby, the city will capture you from its perch on the plateau overlooking the Asinaro valley. The scent of citrus, olive, and almond trees carries in the breeze stemming from the orchards bordering the edges of town.
The unique stone used for crafting the buildings have provided Noto with a distinctive ambiance that is accentuated by balconies with wrought iron railings, decorative cherubs, and a quintessential golden glint. You will step out into the city with your private guide for an introductory tour that will unveil the many splendors of Noto that range from the beautiful Piazza Immacolata to the intoxicating aromas of local cuisine. You will soon reach San Nicolò Cathedral, which is known for its Baroque grandeur reflected in the peach hue of the crowning dome. The architectural feature also acts as the focal point of the city’s skyline when seen from the sophisticated balconies and terraces acting as a reminder of the original dome that collapsed in 1996.
Noto – Explore the Coastline and Local Towns for Fine Wines and Charm
In the morning, the scent of sfogliatella fills the dining room of your hotel and is accompanied by the aroma of freshly brewed espresso. The pastry resembles a shell with a flaky, layered crust stuffed with cream and is often flavored with refreshing orange zest. Your guide will meet you in your hotel lobby after breakfast eager to introduce you to Sicily’s lavish coastline. As you explore the small towns, you will also experience the wines that are produced alongside the luxurious architecture, fascinating histories, and the shimmering seascape. Your first stop will take you to Marzamemi, a fishing village that brims with tradition and stunning color.
Your guide will offer you a glimpse of the town’s fascinating past that dates back to the Arab settlers. The streets retain an ambiance from their North African heritage and make the town feel distinctly Moroccan as opposed to Italian. This stems partly from the stone block buildings that are clustered around the public piazzas and are adorned with supportive archways with splashes of bright turquoise hues from painted windows and doors. Antique tonnara, a historical network of chambers with rows of doors and nets used to catch fish in the region, remain on the shoreline. You will follow your guide through the narrow lanes and the mouthwatering aromas of grilling seafood dressed in lemon juice, and past the fisherman’s houses that are decorated with blue doors and potted red geraniums plants in view of the turquoise sea.
You can dig your toes into the golden sands to enjoy the warmth of the Mediterranean coastline and listen to lapping waves from the Ionian Sea. The natural harbor was once famous, not just for fishing but also for transferring wine to and from Genoa. At lunch, you will enter into a classic restaurant that serves delectable dishes like grilled fish, red prawns with pasta, and pasta with sardines. Your guide will offer a fantastic pairing of wines as the food brings to light the local Catarratto from near Ragusa. The scent of lemon zest and wild oranges drift upwards from the pale-yellow hue leaving in a mild acidity and the lingering flavor of sweet spices on your palate.
Taormina – Travel to Taormina with a Private Tour and Cooking Class
The gorgeous city of Taormina stands atop a rocky terrace that overlooks the crystalline turquoise waters of the Ionian Sea. Your private transfer will meet you at your hotel after breakfast and escort you to your opulent accommodation within the elegant ambiance deriving from the boutique shops, Baroque churches, ancient architecture, and quiet gardens. Your guide will meet you at the hotel before introducing you to the grandeur of Taormina set beneath ruins of the castle at 1,305 feet above sea level and offering spectacular views of Mount Etna’s peak at 10,991 feet above sea level.
The aroma of the sea drifts through the streets and blends with the scent of fresh pastries from the local bakeries. Your guide will take you on a fabulous tour alongside the elegant facades that line Corso Umberto and to the edges of the pebbled shoreline at Lido Mazzarò where the colorful umbrellas and deck chairs provide a comfortable space to enjoy the warm water. You will marvel at the Greek Theater, an ancient theater carved into the natural slope of the mountain and dating back to the 3rd century BC. The view from the top row sweeps from the coastline to the epic slopes of Mount Etna.
In the afternoon, you will meet your chef in a private kitchen ready for your grand introduction to classic Sicilian cuisine. Not only will you learn how to prepare a selection of traditional recipes, but your chef will also pair each dish with a local Sicilian wine balancing the beautiful flavors between every sip and bite. Before you begin your descent into robust flavors of dishes like stuffed artichoke hearts, octopus salad, risotto with fresh seafood, and pasta cooked in black squid sauce, your chef might welcome you with a glass of almond wine. The surprisingly delicious flavor will become a treat for your palate with notes of citrus and spices awakening your taste buds before the meal.
Taormina – Discover the Scenery and Wineries around Mount Etna
Mount Etna looms in the distance with the reputation as Europe’s most active volcano but the lunar-like landscape along the craters transition into lush and fertile soils. These conditions bring the tremendous farms, orchards, and estates that produce some of Sicily’s most prominent wines. Your guide will greet you after breakfast at your hotel and lead you onto the foothills of Mount Etna with the looming craters more than 10,991 feet above sea level. The volcanic soil contains rich nutrients that add to the fortified flavors of produce grown along the hills.
You will arrive at the first estate for a grand view of the volcanic peak accentuated by a family history producing wine on the landscape. Walk through the vines with your guide to learn about the winery’s past and how the particular landscape affects the variety of grapes grown on the property. You will enjoy the famous panoramic view from the terrace while sampling the delicious wines garnered from more than 1,482 acres of land. The aromas of cherries and herbs with hints of vanilla and tobacco provide an introduction to a silky, full-bodied wine offering a flavorful finish perfect for indulging in the view of Mount Etna.
Salina – Venture to the Aeolian Islands for a Gorgeous Coastal Discovery
Your scenic venture to the Aeolian Islands will take you from the shores of Milazzo with your high-speed hydrofoil skimming the waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea until you reach the marina at Salina. The captivating beauty of the island boasts olive groves and Mediterranean bushes, lush fig trees, and thriving citrus orchards. Stone streets and pebbled beaches straddle the valleys and shoreline is shaped by two dormant volcanic peaks both nearly 3,000 feet above sea level. The surprising verdant landscape contains bursts of color from blossoming wildflowers and yellow gorse bushes.
You will see the grapevines blanketing the hilly slopes from the distance away from the high coastal cliffs that plunge into the breaking waves. The steep terrain is perfect for outdoor enthusiasts, hikers, boaters, and wine-lovers with vintners producing rare, exotic, and interesting flavors. After settling into the comforts of your gorgeous hotel, you will have the remaining day at your leisure to discover the island at your preferred pace.
Locals continue to share stories about when Pablo Neruda visited the island, a moment immortalized in the 1994 film Il Postino. You can visit the charming town of Pollara, which nestles between the dramatic steep slopes of the western volcano and the glistening waters of the sea. The bay has a sliver of beach wrapping around the water connected to the upper reaches of town by a series of narrow stone steps. The spectacular views of the sea have a backdrop to the soaring volcanic cliffs enhanced by the peaceful ambiance of the island.
Salina – Explore Wine and Culinary Experiences on the Aeolian Islands
The beauty of Salina is visible from every angle throughout the day. You will find the sweet aroma of mulberry granita filling the streets of town in the morning and the scent of black mulberry jam drifting out of the bakeries. Your guide will meet you at the hotel ready to lead you on an encompassing food and wine of Salina beginning at an authentic family-owned vineyard that produces organic wines with particular flavors that capture the essence of the island.
Your guide will pour wine made from the Malvasia grape, which was transported to Italy by the ancient Greek and later the Venetian Republic. You will enjoy finding aromas like aromatic herbs and flowers that lead to bittersweet tastes from the mineralistic tones from the soil. At a second winery, you will find a completely different flavor in the Malvasia to represent the ancient tradition of sweet wine. The scented effervescent wine contains hints of apricot and pear with a touch of floral aromatics leading to a crisp body perfectly paired with a light dessert pistachio-semifreddo.
Catania – Return to Sicily at Catania with a Tour and Wine Tasting
You will travel by hydrofoil back to the shores of Sicily where your private transfer will greet you at the port and escort you to the bustling city of Catania. As Sicily’s second-largest city, Catania has a unique charm of its own deriving from the ancient history and Baroque architecture, looming presence of Mount Etna’s grand peak and the spectacular flavors of the local cuisine.
The Cathedral of St. Agata contains hints of Norman and Baroque design with foundations placed in the eleventh century. The interior contains Roman and medieval sarcophagi related to Aragonese kings and famous Sicilian composers. Your guide will greet you at the hotel ready to lead you through the captivating city from the elegant fountain trickling in Piazza del Duomo to the distinctive pilasters and sculptured windows that adorn the Benedictine monastery. Ancient ruins stand as the foundations to the town date back more than 2,700 years with iconic culture featured in the lively morning fish market known as La Pescheria and the iconic Sicilian dish pasta alla Norma, the scent of which begins to drift out of the restaurants and cafes before noon.
Your guide balances the historical charm and cultural treasures of the city with the culinary delights found in the bakeries, restaurants, and enotecas around town. You will taste four typical Sicilian wines for a delightful end to your exploration of the island’s ancient and evolving winemaking traditions.
Catania – Depart for Home
In the morning, the sunlight will wash over the dazzling dome and soaring bell towers that adorn the city skyline. The bustling sounds of the legendary fish market return and vendors showcase their lavish catches from the morning with large swordfish, ruby prawns, and pools of sea urchins. Locals and visitors alike browse the lanes that are lined with tables groaning with the weight of mysterious sea life searching for the perfect ingredients for dinner erupting with the treasured flavors of customary Sicilian cuisine. Your private transfer will meet you at the hotel after breakfast and one last wander of the streets to escort you to Catania-Fontanarossa International Airport for your flight home and the end to your fantastic tour of Sicily’s history, culture, and wine.
- Indulge in the specialty wines produced on the slopes of Mount Etna for distinctive flavors found only in Sicily
- Discover the rare and unique tastes of wines made on the Aeolian Island of Salina during a private winery tour
- Uncover the fascinating history of Noto and the Baroque architectural treasures that shape the city’s preserved grandeur
- Wander through the atmospheric lanes that wind through the coastal town of Marzamemi before a multi-course lunch with wine pairings
- Bask in the mouthwatering flavors of traditional Sicilian cuisine during a cooking class taught by a private chef accompanied with almond wine
- Explore the splendid towns and enchanting scenery of Salina island at your own pace for views over the Ionian Sea and a relaxed, welcoming ambiance
- Traverse the marvels of Catania, Sicily’s second-largest city, for insight into the ancient and Baroque history that dates back more than 2,700 years
Explore the delights of Sicily during your 8-day wine tour that will highlight the best of history and culture as seen through the lens of viticulture on the island. The majestic scenery and celebrated cuisine illustrate a rich history. Diverse culture has been captured in the marrying of dynamic flavors that came from the distinctive atmospheres towns scattered across Sicily. From glitzy and glamorous cities to quiet seaside towns, opulent estates and charming orchards, enjoy the marvels of Sicily with private guided tours that will celebrate authentic island life.
Your adventure is designed around your palate and will begin with your arrival in Noto for two nights. Revel in the lasting beauty of the Baroque city with a guided tour that will immerse you in the historical foundations and lavish architecture. Discover the flavors in and around Noto as they accentuate the marvelous ambiance before you traverse the coastline that leads to the fishing village of Marzamemi. Wander the winding lanes, enjoy the antique setting, and delight in a fabulous multi-course meal that is paired with delightful local wines before transferring to Taormina for two nights. The legendary beauty of this city provides the perfect destination for historical exploration and luxurious tastings with a private tour of the ancient foundations and dramatic vistas that overlook the water, as well as discovering the splendid wines that are produced on the slopes of the infamous volcano of Mount Etna.
Travel to Salina to indulge in the tranquil ambiance along one of the Aeolian Islands for two nights. The unique destination features small towns, coastal cliffs, incredible seafood, remarkable history, and breathtaking landscapes all surrounded by the Ionian Sea and crowned with rare wines capturing flavors only found on the island chain. You will arrive in Catania for one night with a tour that will introduce you to the culture around the famous fish market and the grandeur of the Baroque architecture. Enjoy the treasured wine from around the region and greater Sicily during your final tasting for a fantastic end to your Sicilian wine discovery tour. Consider reading some of our travelers’ Italy tour reviews for more ideas to perfect your dream Italy vacation.
$2,195 per person (excluding international flights)
Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.
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Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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