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Golden Week in Sicily - For Women Only
time 9 Days / 7 Nights

Palermo (2 nights), Agrigento (1), Taormina (4)

Exclusive Small Group Tour Led by Author Susan Van Allen —14 guests maximum

Join Susan Van Allen, author of 100 Places in Italy Every Woman Should Go,  for this Golden Getaway to Sicily--an adventure packed with awe-inspiring sights, amazing tastes, and wonderful welcoming natives. Treat yourself to the pleasures of 5-star hotels, immersive experiences such as making pasta in a Palermo palazzo, wine tasting on the slopes of Mount Etna, and discovering Agrigento’s Greek Temples at the magical sunset hour. All along the way, with a group of extraordinary women, you’ll enjoy breathtaking scenery, artisan shopping, and delicious food and wine.

This is a Gift of La Dolce Vita=the Sweet Life, custom-designed, so that women can fully experience Sicily's rich history, soulful traditions, and rejuvenating pleasures.

inclusionAt a Glance
  • Friday - Depart USA - Andiamo!
  • Saturday - Welcome to Your Golden Week
  • Sunday - Taste Sicily
  • Monday - Splendid Monreale / Sunset in the Valley of the Temples
  • Tuesday - Caltagirone, City of Ceramics / Bella Taormina
  • Wednesday - Delights of a Mount Etna Winery
  • Thursday - Discover Siracusa
  • Friday - La Dolce Vita Day / Farewell Dinner
  • Saturday - Arrivederci!
dates Itinerary
Click on the plus sign for full day description.

Board your overnight flight and you're off to your exciting Golden Week in Sicily! 
*Flights are not included in the price of this package.  We are happy to arrange them for you.

Benvenuta! You’ll be met by our driver at the Palermo airport, then transported to your city center 5-star hotel, where you’ll be immersed in Old World elegance. You’ll have time to relax and unpack, perhaps enjoy a treatment in the hotel spa, or explore the wonders of the nearby historic center.
In the evening, we’ll gather for an aperitivo to toast the week ahead.  Susan will give you tips about keeping a travel journal, so you can create a treasured souvenir of your week through journaling. We’ll dine nearby in a cozy trattoria, enjoying Sicilian specialties, the first of many memorable meals.

Meals Included: D

Buongiorno! After enjoying the hotel’s abundant breakfast buffet, we’ll set off to immerse ourselves in the beauty and deliciousness of Palermo. We’ll stroll by Baroque palaces, discover the extraordinary Duomo, and begin our cooking lesson with a chef guiding us through the bustling Capo market to choose the best seasonal ingredients to make our lunch.

Class will take place in a luxurious palazzo, where we’ll roll up our sleeves for hands-on pasta making. Lunch, enjoying the fruits of our labors, will follow and then we’ll be treated to a special palazzo tour, given by the signora who still lives here, to admire ornately frescoed rooms and antique treasures, while enjoying stories of her family and the property’s rich history.

The rest of the day is yours to enjoy this fascinating city, with Susan’s guidance for the best sight-seeing, shopping, and restaurants for dinner on your own.

Meals Included: B, L

We’ll depart Palermo this morning for a short ride to a medieval treasure: the Cathedral of Monreale. We’ll be guided through its interior, that’s a massive splendor of dazzling mosaics depicting Biblical stories. Then we’ll have free time to enjoy the hilltop village and have lunch on our own.

Next, we’ll ride through the lovely Sicilian countryside to arrive in Agrigento’s stunning Valley of the Temples, built by the Greeks in the sixth century BC. We’ll have time to settle into our hotel, a former 18th century noble villa, that sits in the midst of this UNESCO World Heritage Site, with perfect temple views. At sunset we’ll take a guided walk through this ancient wonderland, and to cap the magical experience with deliciousness, we’ll dine at the hotel, savoring southern Sicilian flavors and a most inspiring sight: the Temple of Concordia under the starry night sky.

Meals Included: B, D

After a leisurely breakfast, we’ll set out to discover the hilltop village of Caltagirone, that for centuries has been famous for its tradition of ceramics. The centerpiece of this enchanting spot is a stairway of 124 steps, each decorated with vibrantly painted tiles. There will be time to meet artisans in their shops and enjoy lunch on our own.

From Caltagirone, we’ll travel to Sicily’s east coast, and land in the island’s jewel: Bella Taormina. Perched on a cliff overlooking the sparkling Ionian sea, it’s been a haven for pleasure seekers since the days of the Roman Empire. After settling into our luxurious hotel, which we’ll enjoy for the next 4 nights, we’ll have an early evening orientation walk through town, including a stop at the Teatro Greco, originally created by the Greeks, that the Romans rebuilt in the third century.

Dinner is on your own, with Susan’s recommendations of choices that range from folksy pizzerias to chic upscale restaurants.

Meals Included: B


Today we’ll experience the joyful side of Mount Etna, Sicily’s most dramatic spot. Vineyards thrive on the volcano’s fertile slopes, and we’ll visit an award-winning winery that’s been in the same family since 1727. Proud and passionate vintners will guide us through the historical estate and cellar, and along with wine tasting will be a delicious lunch of local specialties, overlooking the terraced paradise.

We’ll return to Taormina in the afternoon, to enjoy strolling, shopping, and dinner on our own.

Meals Included: B, L

We’ll travel back in time with a day in marvelous Siracusa, where Greeks first settled Sicily and built a city that flourished and rivaled Athens. We’ll be guided through the evocative remains of ancient times, including a Greek theater, Roman amphitheater, and the Ear of Dionysus, a cave that’s inspired fascinating legends. Moving on to the island of Ortigia, the city’s historic center, we’ll be amazed to be surrounded by remains of ancient civilizations beautifully blended with Baroque architecture, and enjoy a delicious pasticceria stop to indulge in Sicily’s finest sweets. There will be free time for strolling, shopping, and lunch, and then we’ll end our visit with a leisurely boat ride, discovering sea caves and toasting the superb experience with local wine.

We’ll return to Taormina by evening, to enjoy dinner on our own.

Meals Included: B

Today is your day to enjoy Taormina according to your desires, with Susan’s recommendations. You may choose to enjoy the hotel’s spa and pool, head to the nearby beach, wander and shop in the town’s charming alleyways, or take an optional excursion to Mount Etna.

In the evening we’ll gather for a Farewell Dinner at one of Taormina’s most beloved restaurants, to celebrate our Golden Week, refreshed and inspired.

Meals Included: B, D

Our driver will transport you to the Catania airport, where you’ll depart with Golden Memories of our week together...

Meals Included: B