14 Day Discover Sicily & Malta 2018 Itinerary

Gate 1 Travel
4.0 . Great
75%
Travel Style: Array Mixed
Physical Level: All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included. Moderate
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value (3*)
14 days
From: $ 4,199 $ 300 / day
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Overview

Highlights (Bullets)

  • Visit the Palatine Chapel in the Norman Palace with its interior of glittering 12th century Byzantine mosaics
  • Tour the old city of Palermo, featuring an incredible mix of architectural styles
  • Discover Phoenician Motya with its famous Charioteer by boat
  • Visit Mazara del Vallo, with its Arabian style quarters and famous dancing Satyr
  • Make your own classic pizza from fresh ingredients!
  • Discover Agrigento's Valley of the Temples, the best preserved remains outside of Greece
  • View the Roman Villa del Casale in Piazza Armerina, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Visit the trendy resort town of Taormina
  • Ascend the lava-crusted slopes of Mt. Etna – one of the most active volcanoes in Europe!
  • Discover the island of Ortigia, the historical center of the city of Siracusa
  • Visit the Greek Theater and the Ear of Dionysus in the Siracusa Archaeological Park
  • See the baroque jewels of Noto, Ragusa, and Scicli
  • Discover the rich history of Valletta, the European Capital of Culture for 2018
  • Explore the “Three Cities” Vittoriosa, Cospicua, and Senglea areas of Malta
  • Marvel at the awe-inspiring megalithic Temples of Ggantija in Gozo
  • Experience Maltese cuisine & hospitality during lunch in a private home

Short Description

2 Palermo, 2 Marsala Area, 1 Agrigento, 2 Ragusa, 2 Catania, 3 Sliema

Style Small group tour
See all the highlights and popular spots on a classic tour.
Itinerary Focus Classic Highlights
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value (3*)
Flight & Transport Inclusions All internal ground transport
Start City N/A
End City N/A

Destinations

Italy Malta

Attractions & Cities Visited

Agrigento Gozo Mdina Mount Etna Palermo Sicily Valletta

Activities & Interests

Culture History Nature

N/A
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Itinerary

DAY 1, Saturday - Depart for Italy
Depart for Italy

DAY 2, Sunday - Arrive in Palermo
Welcome to Sicily! Arrive in Palermo, the energetic capital of Sicily, and transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure to rest and relax before tonight’s orientation meeting with your Tour Manager on the exciting tour that awaits you, followed by a Welcome Dinner with the group
Overnight: Palermo
Meals: Dinner

DAY 3, Monday - Palatine Chapel and Palermo City Tour
Start your tour of Palermo with the visit of the Palatine Chapel, a UNESCO Heritage Site, located inside the complex of Palazzo dei Normanni. Its glittering gold mosaics, complemented by inlaid marble floors and wooden ceilings, reflect Norman Sicily's cultural complexity. Continue with a walking tour including the Cathedral, Piazza dei Quattro Canti, Piazza Pretoria, and the church of Casa Professa, an expression of the Baroque style in its most amazing form. Visit a Puppet Theater, a traditional form of Sicilian entertainment that dates back to the 15th century and is still alive today. Discover Palermo on your own with its winding alleyways and colorful back streets during free time
Overnight: Palermo
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Tuesday - Segesta, Farm Lunch, Erice
Morning drive through western Sicily where you will view the famous Doric Temple of Segesta rising high on a hill, constructed in the 5th century B.C., one of the greatest examples of this style of architecture. Enjoy lunch with an olive oil tasting at a local farm. Continue to the mountaintop Erice, a wonderfully preserved medieval town with breathtaking views and a great historical presence. Walk along the cobbled streets lined with superb examples of Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance architecture, home of the “Ericina” ceramic handicraft art. Continue to your hotel where dinner will be served
Overnight: Marsala Area
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5, Wednesday - Mazara Kasbah Maze & Dancing Satyr, Salt Mines, and Motya Charioteer
This morning, drive to Mazara, walk the Kasbah maze of streets and view the statue of the Dancing Satyr, a rare example of Greek bronze sculpture, found by chance in 1998 by a fishing boat. After free time in the town, continue to the salt plant area before boarding your boat to cruise on the so-called Stagnone to the island of Motya, dating back to the Phoenician time. Here, you will see the beautiful and unique marble statue of the Motya Charioteer. It is believed to be the work of a leading Greek artist made in the period following their defeat of the Persians. It was found inside Phoenician fortifications, which were quickly erected before Dionysios I of Syracuse invaded and sacked Motya in 397 BC. End your day with dinner facing the sea. Return to your hotel
Overnight: Marsala Area
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 6, Thursday - Valley of Temples
This morning, view the stone quarries of Cusa before enjoying lunch with local specialties. Continue to discover Agrigento's celebrated Valley of the Temples in the afternoon, the largest and best preserved temple ruins outside of mainland Greece. Tour this magnificent archaeological park, built between 430 and 510 B.C., all majestically positioned in the same area on rocky crests south of modern day Agrigento
Overnight: Agrigento
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7, Friday - Make your own Pizza and Piazza Armerina
Today, enjoy making your own Pizza using fresh ingredients in Licata. After tasting your own creation, travel to Piazza Armerina to view the intricate examples of Roman mosaics at the famous Roman Villa del Casale, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. These extraordinarily vivid mosaics deal with numerous subjects, ranging from Homeric escapades and mythological scenes to portrayals of daily life. The Villa itself was rediscovered in the 19th century after being almost completely covered by a landslide. Continue on to check into your hotel in Ragusa
Overnight: Ragusa
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 8, Saturday - Ragusa-Ibla, Modica, Aromatic Herb & Plant Gardens, Scicli
This morning, indulge in the baroque atmosphere of Ragusa-Ibla, with its breathtaking sights of houses, churches, and palaces that seem layered one on top of the other. After lunch, travel to Modica, known all over the world for its chocolate production. Continue to visit a garden of aromatic herbs & plants. Learn how the herbs are grown and their uses while trying to recognize them! In the afternoon, enjoy a walk in Scicli before returning to your hotel
Overnight: Ragusa
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 9, Sunday - Noto, Siracusa with its Neapolis & Ortigia
Today, travel to Noto, a wonderful Baroque town, where you will have time to wander around and discover one of the most spectacular urban settlements. Arrive in Siracusa to admire the “Old City,” also known as Città Vecchia, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, located on the island of Ortygia. After free time for lunch, continue with a visit to the archaeological area of the Neapolis and get a glimpse of Siracusa as it was in ancient times with its Greek theater, the remains of Roman Amphitheater, and the "Ear of Dionysius," an awe-inspiring artificial limestone cave renowned for its outstanding acoustics. Travel to Catania, a wonderful combination of ancient and modern, under the shadow of Mt. Etna
Overnight: Catania
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 10, Monday - Mt. Etna Summit & Taormina
Begin the day with a visit to the lava-crusted slopes of Mt. Etna, which dominates the scenery and is the most active volcano in Europe! Ascend via cable car and buses to reach the altitude of 9,000 feet; step carefully on the varied layers of lava which have solidified over the centuries. Learn about Etna’s impact on the surrounding area and its unique geology before before departing toward Taormina, where you will enjoy a walk on the main Corso, followed by free time to enjoy the city. Perhaps visit the massive Greek Theater, from where you can enjoy remarkable panoramas of the city and countryside. Return to Catania in the late afternoon
Overnight: Catania
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 11, Tuesday - Arrival in Malta, Valetta Sightseeing
This morning, early departure to Malta. Begin your discovery of Malta with a visit to the Malta Experience, a multi-vision show depicting 7,000 years of Maltese history. Afterward, proceed to the beautiful Barraca Gardens, St. John’s Cathedral, a gem of baroque art & architecture, the Grand Master's Palace, and Casa Rocca Piccola. Then, spend free time on your own to explore the city and have lunch. In the afternoon, head across the Grand Harbor to discover the historical area known as the Three Cities: Vittoriosa, Cospicua & Senglea. Tonight, enjoy dinner at your hotel
Overnight: Sliema*
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 12, Wednesday - Explore Gozo
Today, you will start the day early in order to visit Malta’s sister island of Gozo, an island where time stood still, where traditions and customs form part of the daily life of the islanders. Gozo is greener, more rural, and offers beautiful scenic views, having most of the population still following their forefathers' trades of farming and fishing. During this excursion, visit the Temple of Ggantija, which is the only major prehistoric site on the Island of Gozo. The temple is among the oldest and best preserved in the world. Continue your visit to Ta’ Pinu Church, a national shrine, picturesque Xlendi Bay, and the Citadella in Victoria, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This afternoon, visit a farm in Gozo and enjoy a Mediterranean tasting of wine and delicacies followed by lunch. Return to Sliema and spend the rest of your day at leisure
Overnight: Sliema*
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 13, Thursday - Mdina & Rabat, Home-Hosted Lunch
Your tour today will take you to Mdina, the ancient capital of Malta, located in the central part of the island. This walled city dates back to prehistoric times and has witnessed Malta´s major historical events, having a strategic position on one of the land´s highest plateaus. During your walk in the silent city, visit the Mdina Cathedral and the imposing bastions that allow you to admire panoramic views of most of the island. Proceed to Rabat and explore St Paul’s Catacombs. Later, visit Palazzo Falson, which houses forty-five extraordinary collections including paintings, silver, furniture, jewelry, Oriental rugs and armory, as well as a remarkable library containing over 4,500 books and some highly valuable manuscripts. Afterward, you are invited to a home-hosted lunch in a private home. Taste traditional Maltese cuisine, experience the renowned Maltese hospitality, and learn about the values and traditions from your host family. After lunch, proceed to Naxxar, the oldest village on the island, to visit Palazzo Parisio, a unique 19th century palace with splendid gardens. Return to your hotel in Sliema. Tonight, enjoy dinner at a local restaurant and bid farewell to your Tour Manager and newfound friends
Overnight: Sliema*
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 14, Friday - Depart Malta
Transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

*For the Sep 15 departure, the overnight stay will be in St. Julian’s instead of Sliema.

Availability

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Price From $ 4,199
Price Per Day: $ 300 per day
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593 Gate 1 Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings

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14 Day Discover Sicily & Malta 2018 Itinerary

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Gate one did not plan for bad weather…

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Gate one did not plan for bad weather even after knowing three days in advance. We were stuck in an old hotel - worst ever - in Hofn. Gate one was protecting their profit at rye expense of their customers. Would not travel with them again
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An Excellent First Outing with Gate 1!

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I am surprised to find so many negative reviews here for this company, as we recently went on our first Gate 1 trip and we were the only ones who weren't repeat customers on the trip (and many of them had been on more than 5 Gate 1 tours).

Everything exceeded our expectations. Our travel arrangements proceeded flawlessly; we were met at the airport by a driver for our transfer as we arrived a day ahead of the other guests. Our hotels were all very nice, guest-focused, well located and pleasant (they were a bit nondescript... we felt like we could be in Riga or Houston, but that is a small, very personal issue). Our tour manager was EXCELLENT, well organized, friendly, knowledgeable, helpful, concerned, cheerful, attentive and reliable. Our city guides were wonderful, our excursions were fun and interesting and the food was pretty good (I would have liked more choices on the group meals, but again, that was a small issue). I will be recommending this company to anyone seeking such a service, and I'm sure this was not our last Gate 1 experience.
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Our Italy tour of September 6 to 17

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Our Italy tour of September 6 to 17, 2022 was superb due to our awesome travel director, Myriam!!
She has a great sense of humor and inclusivity. No one felt left out nor ignored.
Our tourmates bonded well and thus, everyone had a sweet time learning about each other.
Thank you, Myriam.

Noemi and Dan
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I'm taking the 10 Day Classic Portugal…

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I'm taking the 10 Day Classic Portugal trip in October. After 2 phone calls and an email, I can't get a response to when an optional trip is scheduled for. This has happened before. When you sign up for a trip, everything is great. They will tell you what you want to hear. Afterward when you need more information, no one can give you answers. They defer to the tour guide in that country. They hire the tour guide or company. They should know who they are hiring.
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Riverboat Cruise, Yes! Flight reservations, No.

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We took a riverboat cruise on the Monarch Empress in July 2022. We traveled from Budapest to Prague on the Danube river. The crew on the boat was superb, we had an incredible time. Every day we were entertained, provided exceptional service, and was treated like royalty. There is a concern about booking flights with Gate1, 2 members of our party booked with Gate1, and one short flight was canceled, Gate1 then canceled all of their flights, just 2 days before beginning their trip. I heard this happened to other passengers, my advice is not to book air travel with Gate 1 but I do highly recommend the riverboat cruise.
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I traveled with Gate 1 before but they…

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I traveled with Gate 1 before but they have become horrible. DO NOT MAKE RESERVATION WITH THEM, THEY ARE SCAM. I have made reservation for Colombia, the website says they confirm my reservation within 3-4 business days. It it 11 business days (almost two weeks) and I call them everyday and no good answer. I need to make my flight arrangements as flight rates are going up but they do not confirm my trip. DO NOT WASTE YOUR MONEY. I have bought insurance and they will not refund my insurance when I really want to go on this trip and it is their fault for not giving me a confirmation. EXTREMELY FRUSTRATED! They should be shutdown.
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Details

Optional Activities

Flight & Transport Inclusions

All internal ground transport

Group Size

Small Group - 24 max

Additional Information


Additional Information:
Land only price does not include arrival/departure transfers, but does include flight Catania to Luqa.

Trip ID#:

gate1-DSCV-IT-MT-14DSICMT-PKG-18

What's excluded

*Not Included: Gratuities.
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