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Tastes of Sicily: A Small-Group Luxury Gourmet Tour

Savour the flavours of Sicily on this eight-day luxurious small-group gastronomic tour (max. 16 people). Indulge in private wine tastings, learn traditional recipes with local Sicilian chefs, taste freshly made ricotta, cannoli, gelati, chocolate and more. Explore baroque towns and fishing villages steeped in history, enjoy a seafood luncheon on board a traditional gulet-style ship and specially-picked food tastings with local producers and artisans. Includes seven nights of luxury accommodation, daily breakfast, a selection of gourmet lunches and dinners, private transportation, local expert guides and insider access, all sightseeing and entrance fees and so much more.

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Taste your way through the gastronomic paradise of Sicily on a small-group tour (max. 16 people) as you meet a variety of local producers and enjoy traditional foods like coffee granita, chocolate made with centuries-old techniques and honey straight from the apiary. Plus, get hands on in a cooking class with an expert local chef, featuring local Sicilian produce during this authentic food lovers adventure.

What You’ll Love...

The Luxe Accommodation – Sleep in a castle fit for royalty and wake up in five-star luxury at the base of an active volcano

Lying at the base of Mount Etna—the highest volcano in Europe and one of the most active in the world—the five-star Villa Neri Resort & Spa epitomises European opulence in every way. Spend two spectacular nights in the luxury of silence, only a short drive from charming Taormina.

Set on a plateau with views of the Southern Syracuse coastline, Masseria Della Volpe is a beautiful, family-run property situated in the town of Noto. Modern Sicilian design meets alfresco luxury at the on-site Codarossa Restaurant, where only the finest ingredients are used to create mouth-watering gourmet dishes.

Nothing says 'luxury' like a castle. Spend three nights in the magnificent 12th-century Eremo delle Giubiliana in Ragusa, with spacious rooms styled to fit a king. Admire the historical architecture and the unique on-site archaeological park in this restored five-star estate, owned by the Nifosi family since the 18th-century.

The Experiences – From memorable gourmet adventures to heritage-rich cities and everything in between

Feel like a true local as you enter the quaint fishing village of Donnalucata and share a traditional Sicilian meal with expert local chefs Roberta and her husband Antonio - life-long devotees of Sicilian cuisine. Enjoy the fresh produce and refreshing flavours that are unique to Sicilian seafood and discuss everything Sicily with the local hosts.

Discover one of Etna’s leading wine estates—a region ideal for grape-growing due to its fertile volcanic soil—and embark on a private wine tour and tasting followed by a tantalising lunch of fresh produce as you gaze out over the vibrant national park.

Explore the beauty of Syracuse, a 2,700-year-old fortified Sicilian city rich in heritage – and seafood. Browse an impressive array of fresh produce at the farmers’ market before you board a traditional gulet-style ship for a sightseeing voyage around the city where you’ll enjoy a fresh seafood lunch.

For your final dinner, enjoy a spectacular culinary experience with self-made master of the kitchen, Katia. A Sicilian cuisine expert, Katia will guide you through a magical evening which will have you sharing a freshly-prepared, traditional Sicilian meal whose origins draw from many hours spent in the kitchen with Nonna Elvira.

Your Package Includes:

  • 7 nights of luxury accommodation, featuring two nights at Villa Neri Resort & Spa, two nights at the five-star Maserria della Volpe in Noto and three nights at the five-star Eremo delle Giubilliana in Ragusa
  • Unique daily breakfasts and other gourmet meals (four memorable lunches and four dinners) during your travels
  • Return private airport transfers
  • Local English-speaking guides throughout the tour
  • Guided walking tours of charming regional towns
  • Private air-conditioned transportation
  • All sightseeing and entrance fees
  • Insider experiences
  • Exclusive access to small local producers inaccessible to the public
  • Private tasting and lunch at one of the leading wineries on the slopes of Mt Etna
  • Traditional Sicilian home cooking with expert local chefs

Ultimate Artisan Extension

Don’t want your gourmet journey of Sicily to end? Enjoy two more nights at the World Heritage-listed Castello Camemi, whose triumphant arches and stone pathways were erected in the 14th century.

Indulge in a tasting of classic cannolo—arguably Sicily’s most famous treat—and experience a picnic-style lunch at a local winery estate in the delightful Chiaramonte Gulfi. Savour the salty taste of the region’s famous Ibleo black pig salami with a tasting led by the celebrated salami producers.

Finish your gastronomic experience with a step back in time to an old farm where ricotta cheese is still made the way it has been for centuries and enjoy an immersive, hands-on experience. Indulge in yet another spectacular culinary experience with a final group dinner at a noble palazzo that'll have you feasting on a gastronomic private dinner brimming with authentic Sicilian flavour.

Your Extension Package Includes:

  • 2 nights in the luxurious World Heritage-listed Castello Camemi
  • Daily breakfast and a gourmet picnic lunch
  • Private dinner at a noble palazzo
  • Ricotta tasting at an old farm
  • A visit to the olive oil museum
  • Salami tasting with the region’s celebrated salami producers
  • Private guide and transportation
  • Entrance and sightseeing fees

*The '7 day change of mind guarantee' does not apply for Tour bookings. *Due to the high demand and limited departures any cancellation / refund requests must be made within 48 hours of purchase. Otherwise, the standard Luxury Escapes Refund Policy applies.

After you have made your booking, please follow the instructions on your confirmation email and ensure you complete your traveller information details within 48 hours.

Valid for select departure dates:

9 April 2019

30 April 2019

26 June 2019 SOLD OUT

15 October 2019

Important: Please allow for travelling time from Australia. International flights are not included in your package and must be purchased separately. It is your responsibility to make your own travel arrangements and ensure that you arrive in Catania on your chosen tour start date.

*Instant Booking: *To secure your dates at purchase, click 'Instant Booking' and select your preferred package. Once your preferred package is selected you'll click through to 'Choose Your Dates of Travel' and will be able to enter in your preferred tour commencement date.

Twin-share package: The package is valid for ONE PERSON aged 18 years or older (based on twin share). If you are travelling with another person you must purchase TWO PACKAGES, otherwise, an additional single traveller surcharge will apply. Single travellers will get their own room throughout the tour.

Maximum tour capacity is 16 people, minimum tour capacity is two people.

Guests must be aged 18 years or older.

Tour includes accommodation at the following hotels:

Villa Neri in Linguaglossa

Masseria Della Volpe, Noto

Eremo delle Giubiliana, Ragusa

Castello Camemi * (for extension only)

Accommodation is subject to availability and may be substituted for a hotel of a similar standard.

*Maximum Room Capacity: *The maximum room capacity is two adults.

Please note, disability access is limited during the tour, please consider this when making your booking.

Packages do not include international flights to and from Europe, visa fees, travel insurance, additional activities and upgrades and anything else not listed in the itinerary.

Travel insurance is compulsory. We suggest purchasing travel insurance as soon as possible after purchasing this package.

Tipping and gratuities are not included in the package and are at your own discretion (as a guide, approx. US$10-15 per person, per day is the industry standard).

Strictly no refunds for this package for amendments and change of date.

Arrival and departure transfers are only available on the first and last day of the tour. Any arrivals and departures outside of these days will need to make their own arrangements to/from the airport.

Travellers should have a basic level of physical fitness and mobility and must be able to negotiate uneven surfaces, climb stairs and board boats.

Travellers are advised to check with their local health professional at least 45 days prior to departure, as some vaccinations require 30 days or more to be effective. Proof of vaccination is not usually required unless you are coming from an infected area.

Dining inclusions do not include beverages (unless otherwise stated) and menu options are subject to change.

Not valid in conjunction with any other offer or on existing reservations.

Any unused portion of the package is non-refundable and cannot be exchanged for other services or cash.

Additional expenses such as (but not limited to) flights are not included with this package.

Package cannot be split.

Multiple packages cannot be purchased or combined.

Offer only available for consecutive nightly stays.

Your passport must be valid at least 6 months beyond your intended stay overseas.

A visa may be required to the countries you are visiting and transiting. It is your responsibility to ensure you are holding a current visa.

The value and comparative savings have been determined based on published rack rates and the value of inclusions. Please be advised that rack rates may not be reflective of actual rates being charged, dependent on the timing and manner of your booking and therefore are only indicative of the level of saving.

Occasionally our itineraries are updated prior to departure to incorporate improvements stemming from past travellers’ feedback as well as updates from our ground operators. Please note that while we operate successful tours in this region throughout the year, some changes may be necessary due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route. The order and timing of included activities may also vary from time to time.

All activities and services are subject to availability.

Please note that full terms and conditions apply.

Day 1 - Welcome to Sicily

On arrival at Catania airport you will be met by our local representative and transferred to Linguaglossa where you will check-in to your first hotel for your stay in Sicily – the five-star spa hotel, Villa Neri – home for the next two nights. Depending on your arrival time the day will be at leisure.

This evening you meet your local leader and the rest of your group and enjoy a welcome dinner at the hotels beautiful restaurant, with the stunning scenery of Mount Etna as the perfect backdrop.

Accommodation: Villa Neri

Meals included: Dinner

Day 2 - Etna Wine Day

Today we head to Mount Etna – Sicily’s iconic volcano which sits in a hige natural reserve. The fertile volcanic soil found at Mount Etna’s slopes makes for ideal wine-growing conditions. Today we will visit one of Etna’s leading wine estates for a private tour, wine tasting and delicious lunch. Enjoy the spectacular views of the national park from the dining room.

After lunch we head back to the hotel where the evening is at your leisure.

Accommodation: Villa Neri

Meals: Breakfast and lunch

Day 3 - Taormina Day

After breakfast we check out and visit the chic town of Taormina: one of Sicily’s true highlights. Our guide will reveal the secrets of the town’s history on a walking tour and of course include a visit to the Greek ampitheatre with its breath-taking views of Etna and the coast below.

Enjoy some lesiure time for shopping the cobble stone streets and laneways as well as a lunch at any one of the towns many great cafes and restaurants.

After lunch we drive south to Val di Noto, and our next stay at Masseria Della Volpe. Historically used for growing and harvesting olives and citrus fruits, this old manor farm built in the late nineteenth century, has been skilfully restored and today is a sophisticated hotel that combines the past and the present. This evening we enjoy dinner together as a group.

Accommodation: Masseria Della Volpe

Meals: Breakfast and dinner

Day 4 - Honey & Granita Day

This morning we visit Signor Agosto, a gentleman beekeeper devoted to his bees, who makes some of the most spectacular honey you will ever taste. Afterwards we continue to the beautiful fishing village of Marzememi and enjoy an ocean-to-plate lunch of amazingly fresh and simple seafood.

This evening we’ll take a walk around the Baroque town of Noto and visit Corrado for granita tasting. Afterwards you are free to enjoy dinner at a range of restaurants in lovely Noto – and if you have the room be sure to try some of Corrado’s world class gelati – some of the finest you’ll ever taste.

Accommodation: Masseria Della Volpe

Meals: Breakfast and lunch

Day 5 - Seafood Day

Syracuse is one of Sicily's most famous cities and is steeped in thousands of years of history. This 2,700-year-old city once played a key role in ancient times as a former power of the Mediterranean and this morning we stroll through its streets and the Mercato di Ortigia, a farmer’s market by the sea. Here, farmers pour in from the surrounding countryside to sell fresh seasonal produce such as wild asparagus, tomatoes and the area's exceptional citrus fruits like lemons, tarocco blood oranges and grapefruits.

Afterwards we board a gullet-style ship, the perfect way to experience the beauty of the old city from the water. Enjoy lunch on board as you look upon the beautiful old city from the water. We also visit Ortigia, the city’s island-based old quarter before returning to shore.

Afterwards we transfer to the majestic Eremo della Giubiliana in Ragusa, our home for the next 3 nights and this evening we enjoy dinner of local fresh produce grown on the property.

Accommodation: Eremo delle Giubiliana

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner

Day 6 - Scaurati Day

Visit the UNESCO site of Scicli for a taste of “scaurati” the local bread-snack found at the bakeries.

Next, we head to the fishing village of Donnalucata where we will be meeting local duo hosts, food expert and author Roberta, and her husband and talented chef Antonio, who have both devoted their life to Sicilian cuisine. We enjoy lunch with Roberta & Antonio before our last stop for the day, a donkey farm for a chance to live the Sicily of centuries ago and get a full understanding of the history and farming culture. unique

Accommodation: Eremo delle Giubiliana

Meals: Breakfast and lunch

Day 7 - Chocolate Day

Spend some leisure time this morning visiting the fabulous old UNESCO-listed city of Ragusa at your own pace.

This afternoon we head to Sicily's chocolate capital, Modica, well known for its striking churches and gastronomy. Taste chocolate made by the Bonajuto family, who'll share cold-pressing techniques dating back to 1880.

For your last dinner enjoy a truly spectacular culinary experience with our friend Katia. A self-made home cook and expert in all Sicilian cuisine, we guarantee this evening will be a true culinary highlight and the perfect way to end your tour of Sicily.

Accommodation: Eremo delle Giubiliana

Meals included: Breakfast and dinner

Day 8 - Tour ends

Your tour ends this morning following breakfast when you will be transferred to Catania Airport for your onward journey.

Meals: Breakfast


Day 8 - Salumi Day

This morning we check-out and visit Monterosso Almo for a Cannolo tasting. The cannolo is perhaps Sicily’s most famous sweet – a sinful crunchy dough filled with sweet ricotta. Then we transfer to Chiaramonte Gulfi for a visit to a local winery with picnic-style lunch on the estate. Then we visit the local olive oil museum. In the afternoon visit celebrated salami producers and enjoy a tasting of the famous Ibleo black pig salami. Then check in at your hotel, your home for the next 2 nights.

Accommodation: Castello Camemi

Meals: Breakfast and lunch

Day 9 - Ricotta Day

This morning we step back in time and visit an old farm where ricotta cheese is still made the way it has been for centuries. Afterwards we enjoy a light tasting lunch before returning to our hotel for an afternoon of leisure.

This afternoon we head to the town of Catalgirone for a walk through the ceramic district and visit of a noble palazzo with your local host. It’s here at this noble palace that we enjoy our last night over a gastronomical experience which will no doubt leave you satisfied with the decadent taste of authentic Sicilian produce.

Accommodation: Castello Camemi

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 10 - Tour ends

Your tour ends after breakfast this morning when you will be transferred to Catania Airport for your onward journey.

Meals: Breakfast

Your tour starts and finishes in Catania, Sicily (CTA). Flights to Catania depart daily from all major Australian cities, typically via Rome. These flights can take close to 30 hours and can be booked through Qantas, Etihad, Qatar, Emirates and other carriers.

Book your flight through us. First, confirm your tour booking dates. Our Tours Concierge will then be in touch within 48 business hours to assist with additional arrangements, with no booking fee to you.

Private return airport transfers are included in your tour on the first and last day only. Please ensure your flights into Catania arrive before 3pm on Day 1 and depart any time after breakfast on Day 8 or Day 10.

A visa may be required to the destination you are visiting. It is each travellers responsibility to ensure they are holding a current visa. Please take the time to visit our preferred vendor website Visa’s Direct to assist you with any visa application requirements and processes. If you require any supporting documentation when applying for your visa please let us know and we would be more than happy to assist. Click here to visit website.

Lives Up To The Five Star Rating - Eremo della Giubiliana This was the best hotel that we stayed in during our 2 weeks in Sicily. I can also say that it is one of the best that I've stayed in during any trip to Italy. We had a beautiful junior suite. The hotel is a former Benedictine monastery and also was the home to the Knights of Malta in the 16th century. It has been beautifully restored and is well cared for by the hotel staff. The hotel also has one of the best restaurants in Sicily, Don Eusebio. Our room was spacious, and the air conditioning worked extremely well in the sweltering heat. The hotel also has a nice pool in a shaded area. Breakfast was a pleasant dining experience. Service throughout is absolute perfection. The hotel is located outside of Ragusa so you have the peace and tranquillity of the countryside.
- TripAdvisor
Masseria Della Volpe: We have been to many relais of this type both in Sicily and other regions in Italy and countries, and I must say that this beats them all by far. The attention to detail is tremendous. Nothing is ever out of place, everything has been designed to be guest friendly. There are so many staff looking after customers and continuously and meticulously maintaining the property... it's really an impressive operation. I won't go into detail on all the pros, and I must say there were no cons. We felt this was worth every single penny, and we will go again. The restaurant is great too and benefits from the great surroundings.
- TripAdvisor
Villa Neri in Linguaglossa: Driving up to Villa Neri you are struck by the stately, grand look of this beautiful hotel, set in a quiet spot away from it all, but close to Linguaglossa and Mt. Etna. The common areas are pleasant, and filled with artwork by local artists. Our room was large and decorated with a European spa feel, though it had some funny design quirks. We also had a large deck with two comfy lounge chairs, overlooking the pool area and Mr. Etna. The bathroom was large and well-appointed. The property grounds are lovely and perfect for a leisurely stroll. You truly feel here that you have gotten away from it all in the best sense. There was an ample and tasty breakfast in the morning. We had dinner there one night, and the food was very good, if not memorable.
- TripAdvisor