Spectacular Self-Drive Tour Around Sicily - 14-Day Itinerary

Experience Sicily in all its glory by driving around the island in 2 weeks. Highlights of this tour include Palermo, a cultural melting pot with its stunning monuments and vibrant local markets; Taormina, the elegant village famous for its Greek theater and the postcard views of Mount Etna; The continuous activity of the volcano Stromboli and its breathtaking coastal scenery; Syracuse and Agrigento with their archaeological masterpieces and Mt Etna: Europe's highest active volcano.
Overview Map of 14-day Self-Drive Itinerary
Overview Map of 14-day Self-Drive Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Palermo

Arrive in  Palermo and transfer to your accommodation located in the heart of the city. Take your time for a rest before having your first stroll around this great vibrant city. Overnight stay in Palermo

Day 2: Palermo and Monreale

In the morning you will meet your guide and  enjoy a spectacular food tour around the city. This is a great way to experience Palermo's culture and meet with local people. You will be able to see (and taste!) many of Palermo's street food specialties and experience many of Palermo's artistic and architectural points of interest.  In the afternoon, a private transfer will take you to Monreale where you'll have free time to visit the  extraordinary cathedral, considered the greatest example of Norman architecture in the world.  Return to Palermo and stay overnight

Day 3: Scopello and the Zingaro Natural Reserve

In the morning, pick up your car at the rental car office and drive to Scopello. This  is a small but charming seaside village on the southern gate of the Zingaro Nature Reserve , famous for the crystal sea water and the ancient "tonnara" , tuna fishery. Enjoy a hike along the  Zingaro Natural Reserve, with its characteristic limestone mountains, interspersed by spectacular caves and  a coastline dotted with caves and cliffs overlooking the sea. At the end of the day, drive to the Trapani region where you will spend 3 nights in a beautiful wine resort.

Day 4: Levanzo and the Egadi islands

This morning take an hydrofoil to Levanzo. The smallest of the Egadi islands, Levanzo is a jewel from the past: the “Cave of genovese” dates back to 11-12 thousand years ago, during the final phase of Palaeolithic. Primitive human messages etched into the cave, a prehistoric sanctuary where religion and culture took their first steps between graffiti and rock paintings of men and animals, joined in an ancestral link. Engravings, graffiti, and paintings showing deer, cows, horses, fish and humans: they represent a unique archaeological documentation as well as a very suggestive show. Sea gulls and Meditteranean countryside will ever present protagonists of your trek. Take the Hydrofoil back to Trapani and take a  short drive  up to Erice, a beautiful mediaeval town located 750 metres above sea level, with impressive views of the valley and sea below. Then head back to  your farmhouse  for an overnight stay. 

Day 5: Trapani

If you plan your visit during Easter you can experience "the Procession of the Mysteries", which represents the most important traditional event of the year for the local community, attracting thousands of visitors, and is one of the oldest continuously running religious events in Europe, having taken place every Good Friday at least since Easter of 1612.  The statues are unique due to their construction technique. Take your time to enjoy this celebration that involves the whole city. Dinner and overnight at the wine resort

Day 6: The Salt Road

You can’t leave the west coast of Sicily without a panoramic drive along the ancient salt pans between Trapani and Trapani. Windmills, lagoons and piles of harvested salt, neatly covered with terracotta tiles, offer a truly unique landscape. Enjoy a spectacular boat tour around the Stagnone and Mothya island before reaching  Marsala, a city well known for its local wine.  Here you will  visit a local cellar, talk with the wine producer and enjoy a wine tasting. Proceed to Sciacca, a tiny fishermen village and check in at your hotel  with sea views.  Enjoy your dinner in a typical restaurant and stay overnight in Sciacca.

Day 7: Agrigento and Piazza Armerina

In the morning , take a short drive  to the coast reaching Agrigento. Meet with your licensed guide for a guided tour of the amazing archaeological site of the 'Valley of the Temples'. Sicily's most enthralling archaeological site encompasses the ruined ancient city of Akragas, highlighted by the stunningly well-preserved  Temple of Concordia, one of several ridge-top temples that once served as beacons for homecoming sailors. At the end of the tour, proceed to a lovely farmhouse located near Piazza Armerina where you'll have dinner and stay overnight.

Day 8: Villa Romana del Casale

Go on a short drive to Villa Romana del Casale and meet with your guided for a private tour of this incredible site, containing some of the world’s best preserved Roman mosaics. Extremely luxurious and built on a vast scale , Villa Romana del Casale was probably built for a member of ancient Rome’s elite. After the visit, have lunch at the slow food Trattoria " Al Fogher" for a special tasting of sicilian dishes. After lunch, proceed to Modica , one of the most beautiful baroque jewels in Sicily. Check in at your boutique hotel and where you'll stay overnight.

Day 9: The Sicilian Baroque

In the morning visit two other incredible baroque destinations: Ragusa Ibla  and Sicily. Both have an enchanting historical centre with breathtaking views over picturesque alleys and stairways. At the end of the visit , drive to a lovely farmhouse a few kilometers from Syracuse where you'll have dinner and stay for the night. 

Day 10: Syracuse

This is a day dedicated to explore the wonderful city of Syracuse that during the Greek Classical Period, was the largest in the ancient world - even bigger than Athens! With a licensed guide, visit the Neapolis Archaeological Park with its famous Greek theatre and  walk through the narrow streets of Ortigia Island. In the afternoon, go on a short drive to Noto and visit its stunning Cathedral. Don't leave without a stop at Cafè Sicilia for a typical granita! Then head back to the farmhouse and stay there for the night.

Day 11: Riviera dei Ciclopi

In the morning , drive in the direction of Catania. Stop for a visit to the beautiful Ciclopi Riviera, an attractive stretch of coastline north of Catania. The coast owes its name to a Homeric legend according to which the towering black rocks that rise out of the sea – actually great hunks of solidified lava – were thrown by the blinded Cyclops, Polyphemus, in a desperate attempt to stop Odysseus from escaping. Enjoy a visit of the lovely fishermen villages of Acitrezza and Acicastello. Then, proceed in direction of Taormina. This elegant town  offers the perfect combination of history, sea and nature set on a natural terrace, 200 meters above sea level with a wonderful view of Mount Etna . Enjoy a walk around this chic and beautiful town. Overnight stay in Taormina.  

Day 12: Mt Etna

Today explore the biggest European active volcano with a scenic trek to reach the Mt Etna Summit! Depending on the weather conditions and volcano activity it’s possible to climb to the summit area of Etna (3350 mt), with a professional volcano guide. This excursion takes 5 hours and includes a cable way and 4WD vehicle till 2900 mt. then a walk up to the central craters at 3350 mt of altitude. The excursion will end in the afternoon and on the way back to Taormina , you can visit a local winery for a lovely wine tasting and a tasting aperitivo. Overnight stay in Taormina

Day 13: Cefalù and Palermo

In the morning, take the route to Cefalù and visit this picturesque village, famous for its beautiful cathedral and the nice fishermen harbour. Take your time for a  walk in the city center before proceeding to Palermo. Drop off your car.  Enjoy a final tasty dinner in town before heading to your hotel.

Day 14: Departure

Today you'll say goodbye to Sicily. Till the next time!

Recent Trip Reviews

Related trips planned by kimkim specialists

Sicily trip, Italy - Oct 3 - Oct 17, 2017

Traveler: Robert L. - Local specialist: Giorgia Carraffa

The itinerary - Giorgia worked with us to create the trip that was suited to us, at a fair price.
She was always there if we wanted to contact her with any queries or comments.
The hotels - Were all in great locations, and were very good to excellent rooms. There was only one that was unsuitable, and this complaint was quickly rectified by the hotel and Giorgia. The staff were always helpful and friendly, and were always expecting us.
The connections - All connections were met, the drivers... read more

The itinerary - Giorgia worked with us to create the trip that was suited to us, at a fair price.
She was always there if we wanted to contact her with any queries or comments.
The hotels - Were all in great locations, and were very good to excellent rooms. There was only one that was unsuitable, and this complaint was quickly rectified by the hotel and Giorgia. The staff were always helpful and friendly, and were always expecting us.
The connections - All connections were met, the drivers were on time, English-speaking and well-briefed.
Extra activities - All activities that we booked were arranged with excellent guides, and were great experiences for us. Tour guides were professional and fluent, and activities such as food tours of particular towns and the cooking class were outstanding value for money.

All this meant that we were able to be confident in our itinerary, certain about what would happen, and therefore fully able to experience the trip without worry.

Thanks to Giorgia of Kimkim for her great work in organising and implementing what was an excellent and memorable two-week immersion into Sicily. We have great memories for life.

Robert Lewis and Ros Gilchrist

Spectacular self-drive tour around sicily - 14-day itinerary, Italy - Sep 1 - Sep 11, 2017

Traveler: Mary L. - Local specialist: Giorgia Carraffa

We loved this trip! Hike to the top of an active volcano at sunset (Giorgia ordered the full moon, too), snorkel in the Ionian Sea, learn about the earlier inhabitants of Sicily, their architecture and way of life, amble Baroque towns, hike to ridges looking over volcanic islands and along the seashore and through the marsh (Giorgia organized the flock of wild flamingos), eat gelato, drive and explore at your own pace. The hotels were FABULOUS! The hiking routes really made the trip,... read more

We loved this trip! Hike to the top of an active volcano at sunset (Giorgia ordered the full moon, too), snorkel in the Ionian Sea, learn about the earlier inhabitants of Sicily, their architecture and way of life, amble Baroque towns, hike to ridges looking over volcanic islands and along the seashore and through the marsh (Giorgia organized the flock of wild flamingos), eat gelato, drive and explore at your own pace. The hotels were FABULOUS! The hiking routes really made the trip, especially the hike on Lipari and the Vendicari Nature Reserve south of Siracusa. The Stromboli volcano was unforgettable. I appreciated having an expert guide us on the itinerary and loved just calling the rescue number when the ferry and flight were delayed. Thank you!

Georgia was super responsive, especially when we were experiencing delays in flights and ferries. It was very helpful to have someone to brainstorm possible itineraries with.