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Syracuse, Ortygia and Noto Full-Day Tour from Catania

1. Syracuse, Ortygia and Noto Full-Day Tour from Catania

Learn the ancient history of Sicily on a full-day sightseeing tour that takes you to the archaeological park of Neapolis where you can visit classical monuments of Greek and Roman Syracuse at your own pace on a self-guided tour. Following a pick-up from your accommodation in Catania, transfer to the ruins of Syracuse, now listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. During your walk, discover many old Roman streets, as well as monuments such as the Greek Theatre, whose cavea is one of the largest ever built by the ancient Greeks. Near the Greek Theatre, you will see the latomie, including the limestone cave known as the “Ear of Dyonisius,” as well as the Christian Church of San Nicolò ai Cordari. Admire the Amphitheatre of the Roman imperial age, and more. Then, continue to Ortygia Island to experience the historic heart of Syracuse. Located at the park’s eastern end, and separated by a narrow channel, Ortygia is filled with Greek temples, Christian churches, and Arabian streets. Visit the Arethusa fountain and Piazza del Duomo, where the baroque palaces, such as Beneventano del Bosco Palace and Senate Palace are among the most beautiful in Sicily. After lunch (own expense), go to the small town of Noto, noted for its unique style of Sicilian Baroque architecture, and declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2002. Wander the open-air museum and beautiful Corso Vittorio Emanuele to admire the many palaces and churches that, grouped together, are known as the “Stone Garden.”

From Catania: Syracuse and Noto Culture and History Tour

2. From Catania: Syracuse and Noto Culture and History Tour

Discover two of the most beautiful cities in Sicily on this guided history and culture tour of Syracuse and Noto. Syracuse is a UNESCO World Heritage Site while Noto is considered the most beautiful city of Sicilian Baroque. See Neapolis Archaeological Park, Ortigia, and more. Meet your guides who will lead to the Archaeological Park of Neapolis, an area rich in archaeological finds belonging to several periods of Syracusan history. Later, continue on the island of Ortigia, the historic center of Syracuse. Walk through alleys that are over 2000 years old and full of history. See the spectacular cathedral. Then, head to the historic center of Noto that's called the stone garden due to the architectural beauty of its palaces. See why this place is considered to have some of the most beautiful examples of Sicilian Baroque. After experiencing Syracuse and Noto, get transferred back to your pickup location.

From Catania: Syracuse, Ortygia, and Noto Tour

3. From Catania: Syracuse, Ortygia, and Noto Tour

Enjoy three beautiful places in Sicily with this full-day tour from Catania. Listen to historical facts and facinating anecdotes with your audio guide as you stop at the Neapolis Archaeological Park, Ortygia, and Noto.  Meet your driver in Duomo square in the center of Catania and sit back and relax in the comfortable van on the drive to the Neapolis Archaeological Park in Syracuse. Purchase tickets to the park to admire the magnificent Greek theater, Roman Amphitheater, and stone quarries. Continue to the ancient fortified island of Ortygia. Spend some time wandering the streets to discover the mythical Fountain of Arethusa, Piazza Duomo, the fortress walls, and stunning Baroque churches and palaces. Finally, drive to the town of Noto where you can discover the Sicilian capital of Baroque architecture. Have some free time to see sights like the Fountain of Hercules, and noble palaces like Palazzo Astuto and Palazzo Trigona Cannicarao. Return to the meeting point in Catania.

Syracuse and Noto Full-Day Tour

4. Syracuse and Noto Full-Day Tour

Explore the Greek history of Syracuse and see the remains of the temples of Apollo and Athena on the island of Ortygia. Visit the Greek theater, see the latomie (stone quarries) of Neapolis and discover the site of ancient Epipoli. Pass the cathedral, where the origins of the Greek Temple of Athena date back to the 5th century BC. Learn the legend of Arethusa, patron figure of Syracuse and get the chance to see paintings by Caravaggio in the Basilica of Santa Lucia.    Next, discover the "Garden of Stone" at Noto, renowned for its Baroque heritage and reconstruction on Meti Hill following an earthquake in 1693.

Catania: Vendicari, Marzamemi and Noto Day Trip

5. Catania: Vendicari, Marzamemi and Noto Day Trip

Meet your local guide and enjoy comfortable air-conditioned transportation from Catania. The first stop will be the Natural Reserve of Vendicari, the most important wildlife oasis in Italy. Discover the beautiful beaches of fine sand and large saltwater marshes. Also, try to spot migratory birds and plant species that grow on the dunes and cliffs. The day continues with a stop in Marzamemi, a small fishing village looking out over the Ionian Sea. Visit the ruins of the Tonnara, an ancient structure used to catch tuna. Be delighted by a profusion of colors, flowers, old buildings and one photogenic spot after the other. Finally, visit Noto, the capital of Sicilian Baroque. Get lost in its charming squares and marvel at its churches, buildings, facades and balconies all heavily adorned in the traditional style.

Noto: Guided trekking and birdwatching at Vendicari Reserve

6. Noto: Guided trekking and birdwatching at Vendicari Reserve

Defined as the hotel of the birds, Vendicari is today one of the most frequented natural reserves by migratory birds in Europe and its importance, from a naturalistic point of view, is recognized internationally. Walking along its paths you will be able to observe a great biodiversity of plants typical of the Mediterranean maquisamong which the carob, the wild olive, the myrtle and the "Juniperus coccolone" that, in some places, reaches monumental dimensions. Along this naturalistic path you can visit, after having crossed the big quagmire, the ancient Swabian tower built between the end of the three hundred and the beginning of the four hundred; the tuna trap, of which remain substantial structures; the salt pans, today a place frequented by countless migratory and sedentary birds. In the vicinity of the trap you will also find a plant for processing fish, characterized by tanks for the production of "garum", a typical sauce used by the Greeks and Romans to season food. In short, you will live an experience that will allow you to visit a truly unique place.

Sicily: 7-Day Sicilian Culture and Art Tour

7. Sicily: 7-Day Sicilian Culture and Art Tour

Day 1 After getting picked up at Catania Airport, enjoy a welcome aperitif in the company of your local guide in Catania. Afterward, enjoy a walking tour of the city during which you will see iconic landmarks such as the Duomo Square, The cathedral fi Saint Agatha, Roman Amphitheatre, and Bellini Park. Day 2 Start your day with a light trek on Europe's most active volcano, Mount Etna. After your trek, re-energize with a traditional Italian lunch at a family-run restaurant. You will also be able to sample some local wines from the Etna region. After lunch, enjoy some free time to explore the town of Taormina at your own pace before heading up to Castelmola, where you can sample the region's famous almond wine served with delicious biscuits. Finish the day by watching the breathtaking sunset in the village of Savoca, one of Italy's prettiest villages and the setting for the Godfather movie. Day 3 Today, enjoy a guided tour of the city of Syracuse, including a visit to the island of Ortigia. Here, admire landmarks such as the Cathedral of Saint Lucy, Caravaggio, Archimedes Square, and the Fountain of Aretusa. Afterward, move onto Neapolis Archaeological Park where you can admire the Latomie del Paradiso, Greek Theatre, Roman Amphitheatre, and  The Ear of Dionysius. Stop for lunch in the town of Noto, a baroque-style town with elegant churches and sprawling palaces. In the afternoon, enjoy a chocolate-making masterclass in the oldest chocolate factory in Sicily before heading to the picture-perfect town of Ragusa Ibla, where you will spend the night. Day 4 Start your day at the Villa del Casale in Piazza Armerina, where one of the largest and richest collections of Roman mosaics in the world awaits you. Afterward, head to the Valley of Temples, where you will discover one of the greatest examples of Greater Greece's art and architecture. Enjoy some free time to explore this sprawling temple complex, with 7 ancient Greek temples. Day 5 In the morning, head to the coastal town of Marsala to sample the town's namesake wine. Learn how to differentiate this unique fortified wine by its amber color and unique scent. In the afternoon, head to the Trapani Salt Museum. Here, learn more about salt production methods in the area and admire a unique landscape dotted with over 100 mills, some of which are still in function. Finish the day with a stroll around the medieval town of Erice, a historic and charming town located in the Sicilian hills. Day 6 Today, you will be visiting the towns of Palermo and Monreale, both of which are famous for their Byzantine-style mosaics. In Palermo, visit the 12th-century cathedral and immerse yourself in the city's vibrant history and culture. In Monreale, admire the fine mosaics in the town's great Norman cathedral. Afterward, take in panoramic views of the surrounding valley, filled with orange, olive and almond trees. Day 7 Spend your last day in Sicily at the seaside town of Cefalu. Spend a few hours getting lost in a maze of tiny streets and ice-cream shops before heading Castelbuono, a picturesque village hidden in the Madonie Mountains. Get dropped off back at the airport at the end of your trip.

From Syracuse: Noto and Modica Private Tour with Tastings

8. From Syracuse: Noto and Modica Private Tour with Tastings

The first stop of this surprising experience will be Noto. You will visit the palaces, churches, terraces, all built with local stone. After the visit of the small town, you will continue the Tour of Noto and the chocolate of Modica, discovering another jewel of Sicilian Baroque. This is a real journey into the tradition of Sicilian life. Afterwards, you will have the opportunity to visit the beautiful town of Modica with its churches, the facades of the noble palaces, as well as its winding alleys. In the town stand out the facades of the churches of San Giorgio and San Pietro, the ruins of the castle.  But you cannot visit Modica, without tasting its renowned chocolate. You will visit the laboratory of the most ancient Modica's chocolate shop and you will assist to the processing of chocolate, ending with a tasting of the different types that the pastry shop produces.

From Catania: Ancient City of Noto and Carosello Cave

9. From Catania: Ancient City of Noto and Carosello Cave

The ancient city of Noto is located on Monte Alveria and was one of the main cultural, military and economic centers of south-eastern Sicily until, on 11 January 1693, a violent earthquake completely destroyed it. Following the disaster, the population decided to rebuild the city in a different place, thus abandoning the original settlement and settling in what is now the Baroque Noto. On this tour it is possibile to cross the ancient medieval walls , symbol of the thriving city, and walk towards the Carosello quarry, which is an enchanted and uncontaminated place. Along the path, riched in fauna and rare plants, there will be a short break along Asinaro's river to reach its lake of about 30-40 meters in height. From the lake the tour will continue to explore the ancient tanneries, symbol of the prosperity of the past. On the way back, there is the Castello Reale, which is dates back to the 11th century, to be exact to the Norman Giordano, son of Ruggero d'Altavilla. The fortress was then extensively remodeled over the centuries, especially in the Aragonese period. The structure was also used as a prison. The walls of the fortress are literally covered with graffiti and writings left by prisoners, locked up in the cramped prisons. In summertime, it is possible to try the water of the lake enjoying the amazing view. Bring your swimsuit!

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What people are saying about Noto

Nando was polite, courteous and provided us with a great deal of information. The tour offered a lot of sights and left nothing to be desired. I would do it again in a heartbeat and I can only recommend it.

Our guide was fabulous. She knows her stuff. She went out of her way to bring us the most of Siracusa.

Great experience. Everything was excellent! Salvo was great guide. We can recommend

Our guide Giuseppe is knowledgeable, caring and fun. The tour was perfect.

Great day trip. Syracuse/Ortigia & Noto were specular! Josef great host.