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How to Spend 3 Days in Sicily

How to Spend 3 Days in Sicily

Sicily has a unique culture formed by millennia of invaders, resulting in a distinct architecture, cuisine, and language. The island is too vast to cover in three days, but you can see some of the most remarkable sights if you concentrate on the eastern coast. Here are the best options for a quick trip.

Day 1: Taormina and Mt. Etna

High above the Ionian Coast, and home to a dazzling 2nd-century Greek theater set against the backdrop of the Mediterranean Sea, the hilltop town of Taormina is considered one of Sicily’s most beautiful. Get a feel for the town on a walking or Segway tour, stopping by the theater and other highlights like the 13th-century cathedral, the shop-lined Corso Umberto I, and the Piazza IX Aprile scenic overlook. (Or, discover the local cuisine on a food and wine tour.) Afterward, head uphill to panoramic Castelmola, or downhill to Isola Bella, a picturesque coastal outcrop. Finish your day on Europe’s largest active volcano, Mt. Etna, which towers above Sicily’s eastern coastline and occasionally makes the news with some impressive sputtering. On the way back down, taste some wine at a cellar on the slopes.

Day 2: Syracuse

Venture south to Syracuse, a golden-hued city with almost three millennia of history. Start in Ortigia, where the city was founded by the Corinthians—today this tiny island off the coast is Syracuse’s most atmospheric neighborhood. Check out the Duomo, with its 17th-century baroque facade; the Fountain of Arethusa, fed by an ancient natural spring; and the Temple of Apollo, Sicily’s oldest Doric temple. Then, dedicate the afternoon to the Neapolis Archaeological Park—go with a guide to learn about the history and architecture of sites like the Teatro Romano and the Ara di Gerone II altar.

Day 3: Ragusa, Noto, and Modica

Cap off your stay at the most important baroque treasure troves in southern Sicily, beginning with Noto. Walking through the clutch of ornate churches and palaces centered around the main Corso Vittorio Emanuele, marvel at highlights like the Cathedral of San Nicolò and Palazzo Nicolaci di Villadorata. Continue your baroque treasure hunt in Modica, with a tour of the town’s lavish churches and palazzi scattered around the historic center—take a break to sample the town’s traditional chocolate. Finally, in Ragusa, admire magnificent facades sitting shoulder to shoulder with crumbling palaces.

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12 Tours and Activities | All Sicily Tours

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Taormina and Castelmola Tour from Messina

Taormina and Castelmola Tour from Messina

star-4.5
Visit Taormina and Castelmola on this tour from Messina. During a quick stop in the village of Castelmola, admire a view of the surrounding Sicilian landscape, including Mt Etna. Then head to Taormina to see sights like Isola Bella and the Greek Theatre. Browse local shops or bars, if you wish, and take a walk along Corso Umberto.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$72.00
From
$72.00
Taking safety measures

Taormina Food and Wine Walking Tour (Small group & Licensed Guide)

Taormina Food and Wine Walking Tour (Small group & Licensed Guide)

star-5
Spend an evening immersed in Sicilian cuisine and culture on this 2.5-hour walking tour of Taormina. Led by a local guide, travel to the city’s top spots to sample fresh fish, bruschetta, sweet Sicilian cakes, and other regional specialties. Complement your dishes with a glass of Prosecco, red and white wine, and Italian liqueur. As you walk and taste, learn more about the city's culinary history from your guide.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$89.22
Price varies by group size
From
$89.22
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Full-Day Etna Jeep Tour from Taormina Including Lunch

Full-Day Etna Jeep Tour from Taormina Including Lunch

star-5
Scale the slopes of Italy’s famously active Mt Etna on this full-day 4x4 tour from Taormina. Travel up rugged mountain tracks in an off-road vehicle and trek by foot to a stellar lookout point with views of lava flow basins and cave tubes created by the 2002 eruption. After descending from the volcano, head to a local place for a typical Sicilian lunch of cheeses, cured meats, pasta and dessert served with wine.
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  • 8 hours
From
$205.78
From
$205.78

Taormina Segway Tour

Taormina Segway Tour

star-4.5
Glide past Taormina’s top sites on this 3-hour Segway tour. Led by an expert guide, explore the Borgo Medievale, Taormina’s oldest district. See the bustling Piazza del Duomo, city hall and the San Domenico Palace Hotel, once an ancient monastery. Check out views of Mt Etna from Villa Comunale before heading to the ancient Greek amphitheater of Teatro Greco. Learn about the gladiatorial games held in the impressive spot before concluding your tour at your original departure point.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$117.77
Price varies by group size
From
$117.77
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Syracuse Segway Tour

Syracuse Segway Tour

star-4.5
Explore the historic city of Syracuse on this 3-hour Segway tour. Led by an expert guide, coast toward the island neighborhood of Ortygia, passing the Fountain of Aretusa, the ruins of ancient Greek city walls and the 17th-century Archbishop’s Palace, learning the history behind each architectural gem as you go. Pass other top attractions, including Our Lady of Tears Sanctuary and the Catacombs of San Giovanni, before returning to your original departure point.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$117.77
Price varies by group size
From
$117.77
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Siracusa Food and Wine Walking Tour

Siracusa Food and Wine Walking Tour

star-4.5
Discover the excellent food and wine of Syracuse on a 2.5-hour walking tour in Ortygia, the historic old city center. Your knowledgeable local guide takes you to three family-owned eateries to taste a variety of authentic dishes such as appetizers, fresh fish and pastries, accompanied by samples of wine and liquor. You’ll also pass landmarks including the Piazza San Rocco, Piazza del Duomo, Santa Lucia church, Piazza San Giuseppe and the Piazza Archimede with its stunning Fountain of Diana, providing another experience of Sicily’s rich culture.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$93.98
Price varies by group size
From
$93.98
Price varies by group size

2-hour Private Sightseeing Tour of Taormina

2-hour Private Sightseeing Tour of Taormina

star-5
Taormina is one of Sicily’s most beautiful hilltop towns, but it can be challenge to avoid the crowds, especially in the summer months. This private 2-hour tour ensures a personalized experience and the undivided attention of your guide, so you can admire landmarks such as the Greek Theatre, Corvaia Palace, and Porta Messina; learn more about Taormina’s ancient history; and enjoy spectacular views of Mount Etna.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$355.70
per group
From
$355.70
per group

Ortygia: Syracuse's Ancient Town Center Private Tour

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Ortygia: Syracuse's Ancient Town Center Private Tour

star-5
Go off the beaten path in the old town center of Syracuse with this small-group walking tour. See the town’s top landmarks, including the Apollo Temple and Cathedral Square, plus the quiet lanes of the Jewish Quarter. Learn about Syracuse’s history while admiring the Fountain of Aretusa and the vibrant fish and fruit markets.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$54.66
$68.33
$13.67 savings
Price varies by group size
From
$54.66
$68.33
$13.67 savings
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Mount Etna Tour at Sunset - Small Groups from Taormina

Mount Etna Tour at Sunset - Small Groups from Taormina

star-4.5
Explore the unique landscape of an enormous volcano at with this 6-hour small-group sunset walking tour of Mt Etna from Taormina. Hike through the forest to see extinct craters and other evidence of past eruptions. Visit one of the most dramatic of the mountain's lava caves. Enjoy a light meal with wine made on Mt Etna and watch the sun go down.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$88.03
From
$88.03
Taking safety measures

Ancient Syracuse: private guided tour of the Neapolis archaeological park

Ancient Syracuse: private guided tour of the Neapolis archaeological park

star-4.5
Get up close and personal with some of Sicily’s best-preserved ancient ruins—and learn all about Syracuse and its history from your guide—when you embark on this private walking tour of the Neapolis Archaeological Park (entrance own expense). Choose from morning or afternoon departure times, and enjoy several hours to explore. You’ll see the ruins of the Greek Theatre, the Altar of Hieron, the Ear of Dionysus cave, and more.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$68.33
Price varies by group size
From
$68.33
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Ragusa Walking tour

Ragusa Walking tour

star-5
Famed for its baroque architecture and UNESCO designation, Ragusa is a destination that’s best explored on foot. On this small-group walking tour, you’ll get up close and personal with the city’s sights. Discover ornate churches and palaces, linger in busy public squares, and learn about the catastrophic earthquake that forever changed the city. As you go, your guide will share stories and facts about its rich history.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$67.12
From
$67.12

Baroque Noto private walking tour

Baroque Noto private walking tour

star-5
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the hilltop town of Noto is celebrated for its ornate, baroque architecture. On this walking tour, choose from morning or afternoon departure times and get ready to discover Noto’s key landmarks in just a couple hours. With only a small group for company, you’ll wander through the town center, visit the cathedral, admire the Palazzo Nicolaci, and hear tips on where to find the tastiest granita.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes to 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$68.33
Price varies by group size
From
$68.33
Price varies by group size