Taste Sicily Culinary Vacation

Taste Sicily Culinary Vacation

Taste, drink, cook and travel your way around Sicily. Through its cuisine, you will experience with all of your senses Sicily’s many layers of culture. On this all-inclusive 10-day gourmet Sicilian vacation, you’ll stay in luxury 4-star hotels (3 nights in Palermo, 3 nights in Taormina and 3 nights in Ortigia, the picturesque island of Syracuse) and enjoy authentic cuisine. This is a comprehensive vacation that lets you experience the best of Sicily on this Taste Sicily Culinary Vacation.

This is a dream vacation that perfecly blends classic sights and food experiences for a wonderful journey. Enjoy a variety of unique excursions, winery visits, food and market tours, cooking classes, all with locals to make you feel like part of the family.  The food will be amazing as Sicily has some of the most diverse and intersting cuisines and pastries in all of Italy.  Discover how Sicily’s various conquerors influenced the food, culture, architecture and traditions of this beautiful island on this amazing Sicilian food and wine odyssey. The vacation includes two full-meal cooking classes, two food and market tours, two winery visits with wine-paired lunches. As with all Food Lover’s Odyssey vacations, Chef Kathy has personally selected all experiences and dining venues, making sure your meals and activities are authentic and delicious.

And you’ll explore and enjoy the sights while eating your way around the island. Experience the majestic cathedral of Monreale, the temple of Segesta, the sweets of the hilltop town of Erice, the seaside village of Cefalu, climb Mt. Etna, Catania, and the Baroque beauties of Noto, and Ragusa.  Explore in more depth your three base cities of Palermo, Taormina and Syracuse.  This is a small-group vacation and space is limited to a maximum of 12 people, so you get the attention you deserve and can enjoy this immersive adventure.

 

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DATES AND PRICING

2018 Vacation Dates:

  • October 5 – 14, 2018

Vacation Price:

$4,350 per person (based upon double occupancy)
*Single Supplement Charge = $650

Maximum Group Size: 12 People

MAKE THIS A PRIVATE GROUP VACATION: This vacation is also availabile for private-group bookings from 4 – 12 people throughout the year.

 

BOOKING AND PAYMENT:

  • To secure your spot on the trip, a non-refundable deposit of $1,250 per person is required.
  • The remaining balance is due 90 days prior to vacation start date.
  • You can make payments by credit card, bank transfer, or check.

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INCLUDED IN YOUR TASTE SICILY CULINARY VACATION:

  • 10-days/9-nights accommodations at 4-star and luxury boutique hotels in Palermo (3 nights), Taormina (3 nights), Ortigia (3 nights).
  • Private transfer from the Palermo Airport at the beginning of your vacation and to the Catania Airport at the end of your vacation, and all transportation for included activities
  • All meals: 9 breakfasts, 10 lunches and 10 dinners (2 glasses of wine included with all lunches and dinners)
  • Two fun hands-on cooking classes with local Italian mammas
  • Private Guided walking tours, with local guides, of  Palermo, Monreale, Segesta, Erice, Taormina, Mt. Etna, Catania, Syracuse, Ragusa, Noto
  • Palermo Food & Market Tour – Walking tour in the historic center of Palermo
  • Catania Food, Market & Cultural Tour of its historic center  – with tastings
  • TWO Sicilian pastry shop visits with guided tastings
  • Private boat ride along the Taormina coastline
  • TWO winery visits, one at the foot of Mt. Etna, and both with a wine-paired lunch 
  • Full-Time services, for the entire vacation, of your group leader and food & wine expert, Chef Kathy
  • Food Lover’s Odyssey Sicily apron & recipe book
  • Special Pricing on 3-night extension to the Trapani area of Southwest Sicily
  • Alumni Reward: Receive $200 credit towards your next Food Lover’s Odyssey Vacation
  • Assistance with your travel arrangements from the U.S. to Palermo, Italy and with any pre- and post-tour travel arrangements you’d like to make

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WHAT PREVIOUS GUESTS SAY ABOUT OUR VACATIONS:

“We all had such a wonderful time… Grazie di cuore to YOU! We all agreed that the Amalfi Coast was fabulous… But you are the key that made this trip and our Puglia trip so memorable! Your perfect research and planning and your sweet, easy going “leadership” made the trip! Everyone wants to do it again… With you!” – Teri  (McLean,VA)

“It was truly an amazing experience and I can’t thank you enough for your expert planning down to every detail including the adorable Italian drivers/tour guides who were gentlemen in every respect. I’m sure we were quite the high maintenance bunch. All of my videos of our car rides on the Amalfi coast have a voice track of me screaming Yikes! They were amazingly patient and unflappable– as were you.” – Elizabeth (New Orleans, LA)

“BEST. TRIP. EVER.”  – Aimee (Flower Mound, TX)

“I had the best time. It was wonderful. We did so many different things, and I loved how you mixed all the fabulous food with visits to the area. The food was unbelievable. Going to the market with you was probably the most fun thing out of so many of the fabulous things that we did.” – Teri (Sparta, NJ)

SEE SOME PHOTOS FROM OUR VACATIONS: FLO Vacations Photo Gallery

 

THE COOKING CLASSES, FOOD TOURS AND WINERY VISITS

Immerse yourself in the cuisine and culture of Sicily through its food and wine. You will have two hands-on cooking classes with local Italian mammas. Learn about the wines of Sicily with two guided winery tours followed by a wine-paired lunch. You’ll enjoy TWO food and marekt tours in Palermo and in Catania, a guided wine tasting in Taormina, and a TWO guided pastry tastings in both Palermo and Noto.

 

CITIES AND TOWNS YOU’LL VISIT

  • Palermo – Historic center, Cathedral, food and market tour, pastry shop visit
  • Monreale – Cathedral
  • Segesta – Ancient Greek temple
  • Erice – Historic hilltop center
  • Cefalu – Cathedral, historic center and seaside walk
  • Taormina – Greek Theater, historic center, Boat tour around Taormina Bay
  • Mt. Etna – Guided hike and winery visit
  • Catania – Food, market and cultural tour in historic center
  • Syracuse & Ortigia – Old historic town, Neapolis of Syracuse, Ortigia Market
  • Ragusa Ibla – Baroque historic center
  • Noto – Baroque historic center and pastry shop visit

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DAY 1 – WELCOME TO SICILY – PALERMO CULTURAL WALK – WELCOME DINNER

We’ll meet you at the Palermo airport at Noon where your transfer to your Palermo hotel is included in the vacation package. After you check in, you’ll have time to relax, unpack and get settled in.
We’ll meet in the lobby at 3:00pm for a guided walk through Palermo’s historic center with our local guide. During the walk, you’ll also visit Palermo’s cathedral and, if you’d like, make the short climb up to the roof for a gorgeous view of the city and the sea.
After our walk, you’ll have time on your own before we meet for a light welcome dinner at a historic spot in Palermo.

 

DAY 2 – PALERMO FOOD & MARKET TOUR– CATHEDRAL OF MONREALE – COOKING CLASS

This morning we’ll meet our local guide for a food and market tour with tastings. You’ll have a short break after the walk to relax at a café or shop on your own.
After our break, our driver will take us for the short ride to Monreale for a visit to its magnificent cathedral adorned with stunning mosaics. We’ll also visit the Benedictine cloister and be awestruck by its ornately carved columns.
In the evening, we’ll have our first fun cooking class together, creating typical Palermo dishes for our dinner.

 

DAY 3 – SEGESTA – WINERY VISIT – ERICE – SPECIAL PALERMO DINNER

Today we’ll head to the western coast of the island, stopping to visit the majestic ruins at Segesta.
Learn about the wines from this western part of Sicily with a wine tour and tasting lunch at a nearby winery.
In the afternoon, we’ll head to the enchanting medieval village on the hill, Erice, and learn its history. You’ll sample some of the best sweets from Sicily.
In the evening, we’ll have a very special dinner in Palermo.

 

DAY 4 – CEFALU AND TAORMINA

This morning we’ll leave Palermo, stopping in seaside Cefalu’ on our way to Taormina.
In Cefalu’, we’ll visit the Duomo and see another amazing cathedral and its mosaics. You’ll have time to wander through some of the most picturesque alleys in Sicily before your lunch with sea views.
After lunch, we’ll head to Taormina, our home for the next three nights. After you’ve settled in, we’ll meet in the early evening for a sunset passeggiata of this “patch of paradise” (as described by Goethe), and then enjoy dinner of typical cuisine at a local trattoria.

 

DAY 5 – TAORMINA – MORNING BOAT RIDE AND AFTERNOON GUIDED WALK

We’ll spend the entire day in and around Taormina. First with a morning boat ride along the coast. You’ll see Isola Bella, the Bay of Mazzaro and the Bay of Mermaids. Weather permitting, you can choose to take a swim from the boat.
After our boat tour, we’ll have a light lunch together seaside.
You’ll have some free time to relax or rest before our late afternoon walk of Taormina’s historic center including a visit to the Greek Theater.
Tonight it’s Sicilian pizza night for dinner together.

 

DAY 6 – MOUNT ETNA AND ITS WINES

Take a morning visit to Mount Etna with a knowledgeable local guide. You’ll walk along the craters, into a cave and on the slopes, learning more about this active volcano.
After our volcano visit, we’ll enjoy a wine-paired lunch at a winery on the slopes of Mt. Etna and learn how this particular terroir affects the wine of the region.
We’ll return to Taormina in the afternoon and you’ll have free time to shop, explore, or relax before our final dinner on this cliffside city.

 

DAY 7 – FOOD & MARKET TOUR IN CATANIA – NEAPOLIS OF SYRACUSE

We’ll say good-bye to Taormina this morning and head to Catania for a fun food, market and cultural tour of this city on Sicily’s eastern coast. After our food tour and tastings, we’ll head to our new home, Ortigia, the historic old island town of Syracuse.
After you’ve had time to settle into your hotel room, we’ll meet in the lobby and head over for a walking tour of the Greek and Roman ruins in Syracuse. You’ll see the 16,000-seat Greek theater, the Roman amphitheater and the Ear of Dionysius and learn the secrets of this cave.
After our walking tour, you’ll have time to relax before our evening stroll of the old town of Ortigia during the “blue hour.” A perfect time to photograph the architecture of this city by the sea. We’ll enjoy dinner together at a local trattoria.

 

DAY 8 – ORTIGIA MARKET AND COOKING CLASS – AFTERNOON FREE IN ORTIGIA – DINNER TOGETHER

This morning we’ll meet up with a local Italian chef for a market tour in Ortigia to purchase ingredients for our final Sicilian cooking class together. Lunch will be what we cook.
After lunch, you’ll have the afternoon free to enjoy Ortigia at your leisure.
We’ll meet back together in the evening for an aperitivo and light dinner together.

 

DAY 9 – BAROQUE CITIES OF RAGUSA AND NOTO – SICILIAN PASTRIES – FAREWELL DINNER

Today is all about the Baroque beauties of Sicily. We’ll visit the towns of Ragusa and Noto and marvel at their Baroque architecture. In the morning with our local guide, we’ll explore Ragusa Ibla, a UNESCO World-Heritage Site. Our local guide will make this beautiful village come alive with stories of its history. We’ll have a light lunch in Ragusa paired with wines of the surrounding region.
After lunch, we are on our way to Noto, another Baroque beauty. Before our guided walk through this village, we’ll enjoy a guided pastry tasting at one of the best pastry shops in all of Sicily.
Tonight we’ll have a special arrivederci Sicilia dinner in Ortigia.

 

DAY 10 – ARRIVEDERCI SICILIA – TRANSFER TO CATANIA AIRPORT

After breakfast, we will say arrivederci and your private transfer will leave the hotel at 8:30am for the Catania Airport.

***Sequence of classes, activities, excursions and menus may vary. The final itinerary will be given to each guest on the first day of the vacation.

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