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SH Diana - 192 Guests

Secrets Of Sicily

9 Day Palermo to Palermo

Discover history at the heart of the azure-blue Mediterranean on this fascinating 8-night Sicily Highlights with Malta & Lipari cruise on board our luxury small ship. From ancient Greek ruins to the smoking volcano of Mount Etna, Sicily is a wonderful concoction of rich history, culinary delights, vibrant culture and striking natural landscapes. The nearby islands of Lipari, the largest of the Aeolian Islands, and Malta, add more archaeological finds to help unearth the complex histories these lands have witnessed. Join us on board and learn more as we cruise around these alluring islands in the middle of the glistening Mediterranean sea.


 

 

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Spot pink flamingos and cranes at the Salt Pans of Trapani Nature Reserve
  • Uncover some of the best-preserved Ancient Greek ruins in the world outside of Greece at the Valley of the Temples in Porto Empedocle
  • Explore one of the world’s most concentrated historic areas in Valletta, Malta’s capital city
  • Learn more about Archimedes while searching for his tomb in the necropolis at Siracuse
  • Take a seat at Taormina’s 3rd-century Greek-Roman theatre, overlooking the smoking Mount Etna

DATES / RATES

Rates are listed per person
Start DateEnd DateFrom EURFrom USD
Aug 20, 2024Aug 28, 20244,632 4,935
Rates are listed per person
Start DateEnd DateFrom EURFrom USD
Aug 20, 2024Aug 28, 20244,632 4,935

ITINERARY

PALERMO
DAY 1
A feast for the senses, Sicily’s capital is an intoxicating and chaotic melting pot. Bustling street markets, ancient buildings, opulent palaces and millennia of history await those ready to embrace Palmero for all that it offers. Palmero’s history is complex, to say the least. Middle Eastern, Northern African and European influences are all melded together here. The Greeks, Romans, Carthaginians, Arabs, Goths and Vandals have come and gone through the ages, leaving countless treasures in their wake. The 12th-century Arab-Norman cathedral, built over a 9th-century mosque, houses the tombs of the Norman rulers and is a fitting manifestation of the city’s convoluted past. The opulent Palazzo de Normanni, once the seat of power for the kings of Sicily during Norman rule, is a dazzling display of the opulence that the city’s rulers once enjoyed.


TRAPANI
DAY 2 - 3
The old port town of Trapani sits on a crescent-shaped peninsula on Sicily’s west coast. The town was once the hub of an old trading network that stretched from Carthage to Venice, and evidence of its prosperous past can still be seen throughout the old town. The coastline just south of Trapani is lined with salt pans, and here you can visit the Nature Reserve of the Salt Pans of Trapani and Paceco. This unique saline environment attracts a plethora of migratory bird species including pink flamingos and cranes. The salt pans along this coastline are used in the production of salt, an industry believed to date back to the 12-century.


PORTO EMPEDOCLE
DAY 4
Situated on the south-western coast of Sicily, Porto Empedocles was named after the philosopher Empedocles who lived in the region in the 5th century BC. The marina town serves as a gateway to the highlights of Sicily’s Agrigento region, including the archaeological Valley of the Temples. This UNESCO World Heritage site dates back to the 5th century BC and houses some of the best-preserved Ancient Greek ruins in the world outside of Greece. The nearby town of Agrigento has a medieval core and several interesting archaeological sites. Wander through its narrow, winding alleyways and explore the smart shops, lively restaurants and friendly bars.


VALLETTA
DAY 5
Compact yet elegant, Malta’s capital city was built by the Knights of St John in the 16th century. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site, Valletta is one of the most concentrated historic areas in the world. Although there are ancient sites just about everywhere, Valletta does well in striking a balance between the ancient and the modern. The Renzo Piano-designed City Gate, Parliament Building and Opera House have changed the cityscape and brought the city into the modern era with sensitivity. Valetta is also within easy reach of many of Malta’s other offerings including stunning beaches, cliffs overlooking crystalline seas and the historic Three Cities.


SIRACUSA
DAY 6
Once the biggest city in the ancient world, Siracusa wears its history proudly on just about every street corner. Ancient Greek ruins rise out of heavenly citrus orchards, traditional cafes tumble onto baroque piazzas and ancient lanes lead down to the sparkling Mediterranean, as they have for millennia. The city was founded in 734 BC by Corinthian colonists, and the ruins of the original city can be explored at the Parco Archeologico della Neapolis, one of Sicily’s greatest archaeological sites. Nearby you can also visit the macabre yet fascinating necropolis, housing some of the region’s most renowned historical figures, including the famed mathematician Archimedes.


TAORMINA
DAY 7
Indulge in some Sicilian dolce vita in glamorous Taormina. Perched on the side of a mountain, Taormina has been Sicily’s most popular tourist destination for several hundred years. The beautifully restored medieval buildings, incredible views and winding streets crammed with vibrant bars, fashionable shops and lively restaurants make it easy to see why. However, the biggest draw is the Greek-Roman theatre, built in the 3rd century BC and still going strong. Home to plays, fashion shows, concerts and festivals, the iconic venue offers spectacular views of the smoking Mount Edna and the Bay of Naxos below.


LIPARI
DAY 8
The largest of the Aeolian Islands, Lipari is typically Mediterranean in its landscape. The island’s lava quarries, low-lying shrubbery and precipitous cliffs feel familiar yet unchartered. Lipari Town is a busy little port with pretty pastel-coloured buildings lining the harbour and plenty of cafes and restaurants where visitors can watch the world go by. Above the harbour is the fortified citadel and castle, built by the Spaniards in the 16th century. The fascinating citadel houses archaeological findings that span aeons and empires, some thought to be as much as 6,000 years old.


PALERMO
DAY 9
A feast for the senses, Sicily’s capital is an intoxicating and chaotic melting pot. Bustling street markets, ancient buildings, opulent palaces and millennia of history await those ready to embrace Palmero for all that it offers. Palmero’s history is complex, to say the least. Middle Eastern, Northern African and European influences are all melded together here. The Greeks, Romans, Carthaginians, Arabs, Goths and Vandals have come and gone through the ages, leaving countless treasures in their wake. The 12th-century Arab-Norman cathedral, built over a 9th-century mosque, houses the tombs of the Norman rulers and is a fitting manifestation of the city’s convoluted past. The opulent Palazzo de Normanni, once the seat of power for the kings of Sicily during Norman rule, is a dazzling display of the opulence that the city’s rulers once enjoyed.

SH Diana (Luxury Expedition, 192-guests)

The 2023-built SH Diana will be providing elegant and spacious 5-star accommodation for 192 guests in 96 spacious staterooms and suites, the vast majority with large balconies.

(Click image to view Ship details)

WHAT'S INCLUDED


  • Group return transfers from the airport to the cruise port (via our included accommodation where applicable)
  • One night pre-cruise accommodation with breakfast in a 4/5-star hotel or onboard
  • All meals onboard
  • Onboard accommodation in a stateroom selected category
  • 24-hour room service
  • Coffee, tea, soft drinks and selected alcoholic beverages available 24-hours per day
  • Lecture programmes by our experienced expedition team and guest speakers
  • One selected shore excursion/expedition activities per port of call
  • Branded Swan Hellenic expedition parka and use of rubber boots in Polar Regions
  • Standard WiFi
  • Onboard gratuities & port taxes


KINDLY NOTE THE EXCURSIONS FOR 2024

DAY 2-3
TRAPANI, SICILY
Shore Excursion

The Essence Of Erice
Duration: 04 h 15 m
Included
Visit the village of Erice, one of the most beautiful villages in Italy. Its history was embellished by the poet Virgil
Enjoy the fantastic view from the top of the hill with the Mediterranean see
Stop for a picture at the at the salt pans, here a unique landscape characterized by shallow waters, constant wind and breathtaking scenery

Marsala And Wine Tasting
Duration: 05 h 45 m
Optional
Enjoy the panoramic drive that will give you the opportunity to see the incredible area of salt pans
Take a walk in the intimate historical center
Visit the Florio winery, learn how this famous wine is produced in the majestic giant vats, built at the end of the 19th century

Ancient Greek Ruins Of Selinunte
Duration: 04 h 45 m
Optional
Visit one of the biggest archaeological site in Europe
Discover the history of the different temples in the site
Discover the temple consecrated to Hera, dating back to the sixth century BC and rebuilt in 1958

Walking tour of Trapani
Duration: 02 h 00 m
Included
Enjoy a walking tour in the old town of Trapani
See the Cathedral, Built in 1102 as a chapel of the Genoese, has undergone an important expansion in the fifteenth century.
Learn about the history of the the town

Ancient Segesta
Duration: 04 h 15 m
Optional
Discover a superb doric temple dated back to the fifth century BC and framed into a scenery, as wildish as evocative
Enjoy the visit in a special spot where history and natural beauties meet

DAY 4
PORTO EMPEDOCLE, SICILY
Shore Excursion

Valley Of Temples
Duration: 03 h 45 m
Included
Visit the "Valle dei Templi" – the Valley of the Temples – the most important vestige of ancient classical culture in Sicily
Discover the mixture of man-made cultural environment and natural landscape in a site of charm

Piazza Amerina and Butera Winery
Duration: 08 h 15 m
Optional
Visit the superb remains of grandiose mosaics, the polychrome floors of the sumptuous villa of the late imperial age
Discover the wine farm and taste a delicious lunch accompanied by wines of the region

DAY 5
VALLETTA
Shore Excursion

Marsaxlokk, Wine Tasting of Local Wine
Duration: 04 h 00 m
Optional
Enjoy the island beautiful views during the scenic drive
Learn the secrets of the local wine production
Taste some incredible wines

The Capital City of Valletta - St John's Co-Cathedral - Mdina
Duration: 04 h 00 m
Included
Discover the Capital City of Valletta, fortified city located on a hilly peninsula between two of the finest natural harbors in the Mediterranean
Visit St John's Co-Cathedral, which holds impressive Baroque frescos, ornate marble floors, three-dimensional statues
Mdina, great example of an ancient walled city and considered one of the finest in Europe

DAY 6
SIRACUSA, SICILY
Shore Excursion

Noto - Afternoon Departure
Duration: 03 h 45 m
Optional
Take a tour to Noto, the best example of Sicilian Baroque architecture on the island and listed to the UNESCO World Heritage
Walk by the several town's churches and the public gardens
Classical Syracuse - Morning Departure
Duration: 04 h 15 m
Included
Visit the archaeological park of the Neapolis hosting the most important ruins of the old Greek Roman city of Syracuse
Learn the history of the Cathedral of Ortigia, built on the site of and incorporating the remains of an ancient Greek doric temple

Zisola Winery
Duration: 03 h 45 m
Optional
Discovery the secret of the wine production in Sicily
Enjoy a wine tasting after the visit of the wineyards

DAY 8
LIPARI, SICILY
Shore Excursion

Lipari Island Tour And Winery
Duration: 03 h 45 m
Optional
Enjoy a panoramic drive which will offer you stunning views
Visit a local winery and learn how the wine is still produce following the old island's traditions
Enjoy the tasting of local wines with some specialties from the island

Lipari island tour
Duration: 04 h 00 m
Included
Enjoy the panoramic view and the natural beauties of the island
Pay a visit to the Archeological Museum evidence of all the cultures and populations which have settled the territory
Take a walk in the old Lipari, looking at the typical buildings

 

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DISCLAIMER: Rates are per person, subject to availability and can change at any time