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Begin your vacation in Rome, then head south to the charming bayside resort of Sorrento. Skirting the coastline, push farther south and enjoy a 45-minute ferry ride from Calabria across to picturesque Sicily, Italy’s biggest island. Visit world-famous Taormina, admire the “bikini girls” Roman mosaics in Piazza Armerina, and marvel at Agrigento’s Valley of the Temples with the well-preserved ancient Greek temples and Selinunte’s acropolis remains. Stay in colorful Palermo, a city bearing evidence of the many invasions during its 3,000-year history. Enjoy a day trip to Erice, an ancient village set on a hill with breathtaking views of the Egadi Islands, and get to know Trapani and Marsala, where you will visit a local salt mine. Hop aboard an overnight ferry to Naples, then motor back to Rome for the finale of your vacation.
Destinations & Sightseeing
Individual headsetsInside visits and special features: Shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description including admission charges where applicable.Sightseeing: Visits to Sorrento, Taormina, Piazza Armerina, Agrigento, Selinunte, Palermo, Erice, Marsala, NaplesGuides:
Local Guides for city sightseeing in Trapani, Palermo; professional Tour Director while touring
Scenic Highlights: Mount Etna
The following UNESCO World Heritage Sites can be seen or visited on this vacation:
Transportation: Touring by private, first-class, air-conditioned motorcoach; ferry Villa San Giovanni-Messina; overnight ferry Palermo-Naples in 2-berth cabins
Meals & Itinerary
Buffet breakfasts daily except day 9; 4 dinners
Inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description.
Day 1 Arrive in Rome, Italy
Check into your hotel. The rest of the day is free to explore Italy’s ancient capital. Tonight, meet your local host/Tour Director and fellow travelers.
Day 2 Rome–Sorrento
Travel south along the Highway of the Sun to arrive in the charming bayside resort of Sorrento for an overnight.
Day 3 Sorrento–Villa San Giovanni–Ferry Crossing–Taormina Area
Today, travel by way of the autostrada through the rustic mountainous scenery of Italy’s most southern region before boarding the FERRY for a 45-minute crossing to Sicily. Only a few more miles to Taormina, where you stay for two nights.
Day 4 Taormina Area. Excursion to Mount Etna
Magnificently situated on a 700-foot plateau overlooking the Ionian Sea, the heart of Taormina is Piazza Nove Aprile, a paved square with unrivaled views of the sea and Mount Etna. Enjoy a visit to the heights of MOUNT ETNA and the option of a jeep or cable-car ride for a better view of Europe’s largest active volcano. Return to the Taormina area in time for dinner.
Day 5 Taormina Area–Piazza Armerina–Agrigento
Today, drive westwards to Piazza Armerina, a maze of steep streets positively overflowing with the colorful atmosphere of Sicilian life. At nearby Casale, visit the ROMAN VILLA, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and famous for its mosaics including the whimsical “Bikini Girls.” Next on the agenda is Agrigento’s Valley of the Temples, one of Italy’s archaeological jewels. Visit the DORIC TEMPLE OF CONCORD, one of the finest examples of Greek civilization existing today, and the hilltop TEMPLE OF JUNO LACINIA. Spend the night in Agrigento.
Day 6 Agrigento–Selinunte–Palermo
Leave Agrigento for Selinunte, one of the most striking and interesting sites in Sicily. At the apex of its power before 409 BC, the city exceeded 30,000 people, excluding slaves. Here, you will see the remains of the ACROPOLIS with its temples and fortifications. Then, head northeast to Palermo, capital of Sicily, for two overnights.
Day 7 Palermo. Excursion to Erice, Trapani & Marsala
Three Sicilian towns are on the agenda today. First is the medieval hilltop town of Erice, reached by cable car. Situated about 2,500 feet above sea level, it immediately impresses with its defensive walls and castle affording breathtaking views over the Trapani Gulf and Egadi Island and on clear days, all the way to the African coast. Next, visit enchanting Trapani with a Local Guide, set on a harbor that was once at the heart of a powerful trading network stretching from Carthage to Venice. The city center stretches along the port and was built in primarily baroque style. Finally, on the western coast of Sicily, stop in Marsala, known for its celebrated Marsala wine. Here, you will visit a local SALT MINE and learn how this local product is extracted and refined. Return to Palermo for an overnight.
Day 8 Palermo (Embarkation)–Overnight Ferry Crossing to Naples
A full day to enjoy this busy and colorful city full of interesting squares and marketplaces, churches, and palazzos in every style—from Moorish to baroque. Join the included sightseeing tour to learn more about this city, and visit the magnificent CAPPELLA PALATINA. This evening, embark for an overnight FERRY crossing from Palermo to Naples.
Day 9 Naples (Disembarkation)–Rome
Travel north this morning and return to the “Eternal City” for plenty of time to enjoy an optional excursion, do last-minute shopping, or maybe sip a drink at Piazza Navona and watch the world go by.
Day 10 Rome
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.
With Cosmos, there’s no better way to get to know your destination than through the eyes of your Tour Director. Averaging over a decade... we’d like you to meet a Tour Director, who is representative of the type of expert that will be with you on your vacation.
Escorting tours for more than 5 years
Years of Experience: 9
“Even though I was born and raised in southern Italy, I'm still awed by its beauty. It's not all about mandolini, pizza, and cannoli...come visit and take a look! The history, flavors, myths, and traditions made my country famous worldwide - and make me proud today to share it with you.”
ROME Parco Tirreno (ST) or Santa Costanza (F)SORRENTO Ascot (F) or Central Park (ST) at MassalubrenseTAORMINA Albatros (ST) at LetojanniAGRIGENTO Kore (F)PALERMO Politeama (F)ROME Parco Tirreno (ST)
The following list of optional excursions are examples only for this vacation. These optional excursions might or might not be offered. Whether it's a special dinner, a local show or a special behind-the-scenes glimpse into an historical site, optional excursions are a wonderful way to enrich your vacation even further. Plus, they give you flexibility. We include the must-see sites and experiences, and we also understand that people take interest in different activities and may want to craft a more personal vacation by hand-picking optional excursions that appeal to them.
Don't miss the opportunity to visit this charming village on the Amalfi Coast, which a famous author once said "It is a dream place that isn't quite real when you are there and becomes beckoningly real after you have gone." On the journey to Positano you will pass some small towns adjoining Sorrento to reach the Bay of Salerno, from where the first view of the coast is breathtaking. As you approach Positano you can see the statue of the Madonna overlooking the town with its sumptuous villas and gardens with colorful flowering shrubs. You will be dropped off in Piazza dei Mulini to explore the center of Positano on foot, see the enchanting beach, stop and look at the lovely small shops displaying beautiful clothes and ceramics, smell the wonderful aromas from the pastry shops or make an inside visit to the local parish church with its green and yellow majolica dome visible from just about anywhere in Positano. This excursion will either be operated in the early evening or morning, depending on program of tour.
Approximate value: 28 EUR per person
City Orientation & Dinner
One of the most beautiful cities in the Mediterranean - Palermo - can be seen in a different light with an orientation tour taking in the most important sights as the lights come on. Then cross the lovely "Parco della Favorita" which was part of an estate acquired by Ferdinand of Bourbon who came here when he was driven out of Naples. The land has been laid out according to his rather Victorian taste. Proceed on the motorway towards Sferracavallo - a small seaside village in the suburbs of Palermo. Its origin goes back to the 15th century when a group of fishermen settled in the area to try to make a better living. It has become one of Palermo's best reputed seaside resorts with the economy based on fishing and tourism. The restaurant where we take you for dinner overlooks the sea and the owners wish is show clients Palermo as they see it with its passion, color and sounds. The menu offers a taste of delicious locally caught fish with free flowing red or white wine and mineral water. At the end of the evening a relaxed drive back to Palermo and the overnight hotel.
Approximate value: 45 EUR per person
Why not round off your Italian experience in the company of new found friends and soak up "la dolce vita" of this romantic but pulsing capital. Dinner will be taken in one of the traditional local Roman restaurants and you can really taste typical Italian specialties with a menu offering a wide choice of both starters and main course and including wine or soft drinks plus mineral water and coffee or tea. During the evening there will be music to add to the romantic atmosphere. After dinner a stop will be made at the Spanish Steps for a short visit. This monumental stairway of 138 steps was built around 1724 and the steps climb a steep slope between the Piazza di Spagna at the base and Piazza Trinità dei Monti dominated by the Trinità dei Monti church at the top. They are said to be the widest staircase in Europe. After the stop return back to the overnight hotel.
Approximate value: 55 EUR per person
Know Before You Go
These Know Before You Go travel tips are designed with you in mind, with helpful hints to help you prepare for and enjoy your escorted vacation. They are your guide to getting ready and contain general information on travel documentation, customs, and the country/countries you will be visiting, including budgeting, transportation, climate, languages, and much more. With Globus, you benefit from our experience.
* The "Starting at" or listed price is based on the lowest price available to book. Price is per passenger based on double occupancy and does not include airfare; additional fees/charges are not included. If a price is crossed out, the new price includes a limited time promotional offer(s) – please review current promotions or deals
for additional information. Some tours require intra-vacation flights (and in some cases intra-vacation segments must be purchased from Cosmos).