Country Roads Of Southern Italy & Sicily (summer 2019)

Overview

Countries and places

Italy

Tour Code

E725A14

Operator

Duration

13 days

Brochure

View Brochure
Experience the treasures of Rome, Pompeii and the Neapolitan Riviera. See the unique trulli houses of Alberobello and the Sassi di Matera, and witness the rich heritage of Sicily.

Authentic Dining

    • Alberobello: Meet the owner of Trattoria Terra Madre, who will share his philosophy of using only organic, seasonal produce that he grows himself. See Nonna making orecchiette pasta, before savouring the fresh flavours of your Farm-to-Table Highlight Dinner.
    • Taormina Riviera: Choose from our handpicked selection of local restaurants for your Dine-Around Evening, each with its own ambience and distinctive cuisine.
    • Palermo: At a local restaurant, enjoy fresh, rustic dishes served with local wine at your Celebration Dinner.
    • Dining Summary: 13 Breakfasts (B) and 7 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee.

Insight Experiences

    • Rome: Explore the backstreets of Rome and experience local life, alongside a passionate Roman who will explain how modern life takes place around ancient treasures like the Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon and Piazza Navona, the Living Room of Rome.
    • Vatican City: Gain VIP access to the Vatican Museums and be among the select few to admire the famous Bramante Staircase. Admire the Popes′ treasure-trove and witness the genius of Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel before venturing inside St. Peter's Basilica to see Michelangelo's Pieta, and the splendid dome.

Stay in Style

    • Alberobello: The Grand Hotel La Chiusa di Chietri is a perfect place to relax and enjoy the scenic surroundings.
    • Taormina Riviera: Overlooking the Ionian Sea, the Hilton Giardini Naxos boasts traditional Mediterranean hospitality and fabulous rooms and facilities.

Top Rated Highlights

    • Rome: See the mighty Colosseum and Roman Forum. You will also see other medieval buildings, including Renaissance palaces and Baroque churches, scattered throughout the city.
    • Sorrento: Perched upon the cliffs, lookout to see the mighty Mount Vesuvious across the Bay of Naples.
    • Pompeii: Walk with a Local Expert through the cobbled streets of this ill-fated town.
    • Isle of Capri: Cruise to this famous isle through beautiful blue Mediterranean waters to meet your Local Expert.
    • Isle of Capri: Wander through the narrow streets led by your Local Expert and see all the boutiques as you enjoy captivating sea views.
    • Isle of Capri: In unique style, ascend by open-top taxi and return to the port by funicular.
    • Matera: Visit this UNESCO World Heritage Site and see famous Sassi or cave dwellings, which were home to about 20,000 people until 1950.
    • Matera: With your Local Expert explore this town that Mel Gibson chose as the setting for his film 'The Passion of the Christ.'
    • Alberobello: With your Local Expert, explore this UNESCO World Heritage Site showcasing the Trulli of Alberobello. Circular structures with conical roofs that are domed within, built from local limestone and stacked without using mortar.
    • Maratea: Wander through the rugged streets with your Travel Director to see why this peaceful little coastal town has been named the pearl of the Tyrrhenian sea.
    • Straits of Messina: Cross to Sicily by ferry.
    • Taormina Riviera: Visit the ancient Greek Ampitheatre with your Local Expert. Set on a cliff, open to the sky, take your seats and enjoy the view through the crumbling arches to snowy Mount Etna.
    • Taormina Riviera: During your orientation with your Travel Director, visit the courtyard of Palazzo Corvaja, seat of the first Sicilian parliament, and stroll along Corso Umberto to Piazza IX Aprile.
    • Agrigento: A Local Expert will lead you through the magnificent remains of the Greek colony in the Valley in the Temples. See the massive Temple of Concord and clifftop Temple of Juno.
    • Palermo: With a local historian, see the Teatro Massimo en route to Quattro Canti Square to glimpse the Fountain of Shame.
    • Palermo: Visit Palermo Cathedral and walk through the Palace of the Normans to stand in the jewel-like Palatine chapel for an up-close look at some of the finest examples of Norman art.
    • Scenic Drives: Admire the beauty of southern Italy as you travel along the Bay of Naples, past the Apennines and Calabria mountains, along Sorrento cliff top road and Capri cornich.

What's Included

  • Our highly-skilled Travel Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom and onboard washroom.
  • Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary.
  • We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
  • From time to time, your Travel Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish, which is a local specialty representing the destination.
  • If your arrival and/or departure flights are as per the itinerary start and end dates, then transfers are available at scheduled times. If your flights are outside these times, or you have booked additional nights accommodation with Insight Vacations, you may purchase transfers or make your own way from/to the airport.
  • About Insight Vacations

    Go on an Insight Vacations tour and rediscover the golden age of travel. It is the finest most hassle-free way to explore the depth and breadth of Europe, North America and India. Insight Vacations will provide you with holidays and experiences of a lifetime. Insight aims to exceed your expectations.

    Insight Vacations is a division of the family-owned The Travel Corporation, and is renowned and trusted for its outstanding quality, service, value, reliability and financial stability. In 1978, its first year, the company had a handful of staff in London and carried just 5700 passengers. Today, Insight has a team of professionals throughout the world, plays host to over 100,000 guests per year and has offices in the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Singapore and the UK. Insight has achieved many important Tour Operator 'Firsts' over the years including, in 1983, being the first scheduled tour operator to win 'the Queen's Award for Export Achievement' from Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. 'The Art of Touring in Style' lies at the very heart of Insight philosophy. Their carefully chosen unique features and impeccable service standards enable them to deliver exceptional quality, unequalled value, unforgettable memories and personal freedom at levels currently unrivalled elsewhere in the industry. You will travel with companions from all over the English speaking world - England, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, US, Canada, Singapore and more. Relax and capture the spirit of Europe, North America and India while they take care of every detail. From Great Britain to the European continent, from Turkey to the wonders of Israel and Egypt and the breathtaking National Parks and exciting cities of America & Canada, you are invited to experience the Insight difference and travel in style and comfort.

    Airport Transfers

    On most tours Insight Vacations will meet you on arrival at the airport and transfer you to your Insight Hotel. (Please check your relevant tour page in the brochure).
    Therefore, it is very important that Global Travel Directors provides Insight with all your arrival and departure flight details. If Insight are not informed, no refund will be given for the cost of your taxi to the hotel. Please check all your arrival and departure transfer vouchers prior to departure from home to ensure the correct flight details are shown. If you are uncertain, please check with Global Travel Directors.

    Terms & Conditions

    View all the fine print here - it's really not that bad!

    View Insight Vacations's terms and conditions

    Tour Type

    Coach Tours

    FAQs

    • Do you have a Frequent Traveller Program?
    • Yes, you can join our Club Bon Voyage at the end of your tour by filling out the feedback questionnaire. Membership is free and as a Club Bon Voyage member you'll have access to great promotional benefits and you are automatically entitled to a 5% discount on your next tour. You are also entitled to a 5% past passenger discount if you have travelled with one of our sister companies, AAT Kings, Trafalgar Tours, Contiki Holidays or Uniworld!

    • Do you have a share program for singles?
    • If you wish to share with another tour member you can advise Insight Vacations at the time of booking. Insight believes that traveling solo doesn't have to cost you more. We will try to match you with someone of the same sex in order to avoid having to pay the single supplement. If we are not able to provide a suitable roommate, we will provide a single room at no extra cost.

    • How do I obtain a visa for India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and the Kingdom of Bhutan?
    • Insight Vacations new program to India, Nepal, Sri Lanka & the Kingdom of Bhutan require many nationalities to obtain visas. Due to the changing nature of the visa requirements we recommend you visit Visalink for the most up to date and correct information. Contact Visalink Customer Service on 1300 882 977 with any additional queries.

    • How many people will be on tour with me?
    • With only 40 guests on our premium tours instead of the standard 53, Insight clients enjoy a more personalised service. In a smaller group, you'll be closer to your local guide for a more in-depth experience, you'll spend less time waiting to get into sights and it will be faster checking into hotels with your luggage arriving quicker to your room. Insight groups are smaller, more intimate and more friendly.

    • I want to see all the main sights, but will I have time to explore on my own?
    • At Insight, planning the perfect tour is our specialty. Not only do we include the 'must see' sights, we carefully balance our itineraries to give you plenty of free time to relax and immerse yourself in the location.

    • What are Insight Tour Directors like?
    • Time and time again, our guests tell us that it was their Tour Director who really made their trip. Our Tour Directors are amongst the finest in the business and will help steer you through the labyrinth of Europe's cultures, languages and diversities and bring its magic to life before your eyes. Meet our Tour Director of the month.

    • What are Insight's Luggage requirements?
    • Baggage handling for one suitcase is included in the tour price at arrival and departure from each hotel. Due to limited coach capacity, this single bag should have a weight not exceeding 30kgs (66lbs) and dimensions not exceeding 77.5cm (30.5in) x 56cm (22in) x 32cm (12.5in).

      Charges will be levied in the event these limits are exceeded and our promise to transport you or your luggage as indicated may be invalidated. Airlines may restrict checked luggage allowance by weight – e.g. a max of 50lbs/23kgs per person.

      Constant handling will invariably leave marks on your baggage, especially a soft sided case. A hard shell will provide better protection for your possessions. Detachable wheels on cases should be removed before checking in your baggage. Locks should be sturdy and straps should be tied around the case if you have doubts about the fastenings. Loss or damage to baggage is at your own risk so please protect yourself with proper insurance.

      Since porterage on the coach portion of your tour is calculated per piece, we cannot accept two small suitcases in place of one. Extra baggage may be carried at an additional cost if space is available. However, you must check with our London Reception no earlier than three days before departure by phoning +44 (0) 20 7828 4388 or email london.24x7@bookttcuk.com. Some hotels do have storage facilities, for which there may be a charge, but please note storage is not available at Insight's Reception Centre.

      Airlines may also restrict carry-on luggage, and due to airport security checks, you may be advised to pack certain items into your check-in luggage. Please consult your airline.

    • What are Insight's Hand Luggage requirements?
    • While on tour you are allowed one carry-on bag which should not exceed the dimensions of 30cm x 28cm x 14cm (12"x11"x6"). For safety reasons, wheeled carry-on bags are not suitable as hand luggage on motor coaches and mini-buses. Airlines may also restrict carry-on luggage, and due to airport security checks, you may be advised to pack certain items into your check-in luggage. Please consult your airline.

    • What does the tour cost include?
    • The prices listed in our brochure and website cover all hotel accommodations, all applicable sightseeing and admissions as per the itinerary, motorcoach, cruise or rail transportation, services of a professional Insight Tour Director, all meals as shown in the itinerary and luggage handling. All tips have been included for services on tour by dining-room staff, chambermaids and porters at hotels, airports, docks and train stations.

    • What is an 'Optional Activity'?
    • These are activities that we do not automatically include but are offered at the start of your tour designed to enhance your travel experience. Your Tour Director will have a list of available options and the appropriate costs. They are carefully programmed to coincide with the best highlights available at the time of your visit. It could be a seafood lunch in Venice, a concert in Vienna or a Grand Canyon Helicopter ride. A detailed list and costs can be found in your tour documentation or on our website.

    • What is FastTrack? - Registering with FastTrack?
    • Insight's FastTrack registration is our online check-in facility that provides us with advance security information which may be required by hotels and border crossings as well as giving us important insights into your interests and preferences. The information will allow your Tour Director to better prepare for your individual needs in order for us to make your holiday experience even more enjoyable. FastTrack is available to our clients after they have paid their deposit and have been issued a booking reference number. It's quick and easy and takes only 10 minutes to complete.

    • What is Gold Seal Protection?
    • Gold Seal Protection gives you total peace of mind for only $99 per person. This will cover you (in most cases) if you cancel your tour prior to departure, or if you or a member of your direct family falls sick while on tour and you need to change your flights home. Conditions apply. Please see the brochure or your Travel Agent for full information.

    • What is the difference between "visit", "view" and "see" in the itineraries?
    • Here is a glossary of some common terms used in our itineraries:

      Visit - Your coach will stop and you'll get to visit a specific site. View - A brief stop and an opportunity to take photos. See - Your Insight coach will drive by the site so that you can see it. Sightseeing tour - A local city guide will accompany you on a tour of a city or site. Orientation tour - Places of interest are pointed out, allowing you to go and explore them on your own. 'Why not see' or 'perhaps enjoy' - These phrases refer to optional excursions not included in the tour package, but are available for an additional fee. Time to explore and discover - Free time on your own. A day to relax - No planned activities; time for optional excursions or other independent activities.

    • When will I receive my documents?
    • Documents will normally be mailed 21 days prior to departure provided full payment has been received.

    • Where will my hotel be located and what will it be like?
    • Insight hotels are consistently first class standard and higher or in a style appropriate to the destination. They have been selected because they are good private or small collection hotels or from well-known chains such as Marriott, Renaissance and Hilton. Insight also chooses hotels based on their location. We know you'll prefer to stay centrally, convenient to the main historic, shopping or entertainment districts; or scenically in areas of natural beauty.

    • Who else travels with Insight Vacations?
    • Insight Vacations plays host to over 100,000 guests every year and has offices in the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Singapore and the UK . The company has also appointed specialist agents in Argentina, Brazil, Mauritius, India, Ireland, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Thailand, Philippines, Indonesia, Korea, Taiwan and China. It is therefore quite typical to find many different nationalities on any one tour and discover people from halfway across the world who you only met yesterday will fast become friends.

    • Why should I choose a premium Insight Vacations tour?
    • Insight is completely unique. Simply, we are the only tour operator to give you more legroom on every tour at no extra cost: you'll consistently stay in quality hotels in desirable locations; you'll enjoy more included sightseeing; and because you'll travel in smaller groups, you'll receive better personal service from your experienced Tour Director and Tour Driver.

    • Will I need a visa?
    • You are responsible for obtaining all necessary visas prior to the departure of your tour. Depending on your nationality, you may need visas to enter certain countries included on your tour. Please note that obtaining visas can take up to six weeks prior to your departure. It is strongly advised that you consult your travel agent, and local Consulate or Embassy of the country you are visiting, well in advance to determine which visas you require and how to obtain them.

    • Will the coach be modern and comfortable?
    • Yet another exclusive feature of an Insight premium tour is the incredible space and comfort you'll enjoy when travelling. Our luxury coaches have been specially reconfigured with fewer seats, you'll relax in style whilst enjoying up to twice as much legroom then on a standard touring coach - on EVERY departure with NO EXTRA SURCHARGE to pay.

    Itinerary

    Day 1 - Welcome To The Eternal City Of Rome.

    On arrival at Rome′s Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport, complimentary transfers leave for your hotel at 09:30, 12:30 and 15:30. Join your Travel Director and fellow guests at 17:30 for a Welcome Dinner and the opportunity to mingle over a pleasant evening of dinner and wine at a family run restaurant near Via Veneto.(Dinner with Wine)

    Day 2 - Rome With The Locals.

    Rome is about art, antiquity, piazzas and pizzazz, and our included walking exploration with a Local Expert has it in abundance. Toss a coin into the spectacular Trevi Fountain, see the Pantheon, the best-preserved monument from the Roman period, and enjoy free time to do as the Romans do. Perhaps join a tour to discover an unknown quarter of Rome, Trastevere?(Breakfast)

    Day 3 - Vip Vatican, St. Peters Basilica And Onto Sorrento.

    Meet your Local Expert, for a guided visit through the Vatican Museums, culminating beneath Michelangelo`s famous ceiling in the Sistine Chapel. Your VIP visit includes fast-tracked entry and a behind-the-scenes look at the Bramante Staircase, a part of the Vatican closed to the general public. Continue with your Local Expert to visit St. Peter`s Basilica, one of the largest churches in the world. Later depart for the picturesque resort of Sorrento, perched upon the southern cliffs of the Bay of Naples and looking over to Mount Vesuvius.(Breakfast)

    Day 4 - Exploring Capri, The Isle Of Dreams.

    Wake up full of anticipation for your trip to Capri, the Isle of Dreams. Meet your Local Expert and cruise to the island. Under the Mediterranean sun, ride up to Capri town in one of the island`s iconic open-top taxis, where you can explore the narrow alleyways, browse in exclusive boutiques and enjoy the views over the Tyrrhenian Sea. Descend to the port by funicular railway and return to Sorrento where rest of the afternoon is at your leisure.(Breakfast)

    Day 5 - Pompeii, Matera And Alberobello.

    Start your day in Pompeii, buried in A.D. 79 by the historic eruption of Mount Vesuvius. Walk with your Local Expert through the cobbled streets to see a city frozen in time. Journey along the country roads to the ancient town of Matera, specially selected as the European Capital of Culture for 2019. Meet with a Local Expert for an in-depth exploration of the extraordinary Sassi, a complex of cave dwellings carved into the mountainside, the most extensive example of their kind in the Mediterranean. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Mel Gibson chose Matera as the setting for his film ′The Passion of the Christ′. Venture on to Alberobello.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    Day 6 - The Trulli Of Alberobello.

    Admire another of Italy`s record number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites with a Local Expert. The Trulli of Alberobello are circular structures with conical roofs that are domed within. They are built from local limestone and stacked without using mortar. In the evening, meet the owner of Trattoria Terra Madre, who will share his philosophy of using only organic, seasonal produce that he grows himself. See Nonna making orecchiette pasta, before savouring the fresh flavours of your Farm-to-Table Highlight Dinner.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    Day 7 - Alberobello At Leisure.

    The day is free for you to enjoy this fascinating town. Perhaps visit Ostuni - reminiscent of a North African Arab Medina - with its stark, white-washed buildings, narrow cobbled streets and arched stairways? Later, relax and indulge in the facilities of your remarkable hotel.(Breakfast)

    Day 8 - Journey South To Maratea.

    The local roads take you south to the coastal town of Maratea. Known as the Pearl of the Tyrrhenian, its beautiful and peaceful location has offered an idyllic hideaway for many of the rich and famous over the years, including Frank Sinatra and Princess Diana. After checking into your hotel, the rest of the afternoon is free for you to enjoy at your leisure, you may wish to spend it relaxing by the pool, sipping cocktails and enjoying the spectacular views of the rugged coastline.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    Day 9 - To Sicily And The Taormina Riviera.

    In the morning, travel along the Purple Coast to the very toe of Italy and board your ferry bound for Sicily across the Strait of Messina. According to ancient legend, it was here at the Straits of Messina where the twin whirlpools of Scylla and Charybdis carried unwary seafarers away to their doom! You will soon arrive at your hotel where you will spend three glorious nights on the Taormina Riviera. Join a Local Expert for a visit to the Greek Theatre of Taormina, graced with the most spectacular of backdrops. Stroll on to the tiny courtyard of the Palazzo Corvaja, Taormina`s grandest building. Further along the elegant Corso Umberto, the Piazza IX Aprile offers panoramic views. Take your pick of specially selected restaurants for your Dine-Around Evening.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    Day 10 - Free Time On The Taormina Riviera.

    The day is at leisure to relax at your resort`s private beach, or perhaps explore the medieval quarter? Don`t miss the chance of an optional drive through the vineyards to Mount Etna, Europe`s largest volcano.(Breakfast)

    Day 11 - The Dawn Coast Of Europe.

    Early risers may experience what D.H. Lawrence christened the ′dawn coast of Europe.` The day is free to explore Taormina at your leisure or to embark on an Optional Experience to Syracuse, where you can witness Caravaggio`s celebrated painting, the `Burial of St. Lucy`. In the evening, venture to a local restaurant for a tasty meal accompanied by wine.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    Day 12 - Agrigento, The Valley Of The Temples And On To Palermo.

    Drive to Agrigento, on the southern coast of Sicily, where the Valley of the Temples once formed part of the ancient Greek colony of Akragas. Meet with a Local Expert and walk along the fortified ridge of the Valley of the Temples. The massive Temple of Concord and clifftop Temple of Juno, overlooking the sea, are especially impressive. In the afternoon, continue to the Sicilian capital of Palermo.(Breakfast)

    Day 13 - Palermo And The Golden Age Of The Normans.

    Join a historian to see the highlights of the city. Pass the huge Teatro Massimo to the Baroque Quattro Canti Square and glimpse the beauties of the Fountain of Shame. Palermo Cathedral has been altered over the years and a venture inside will help you to appreciate the blend of architectural styles. Continue to the amazing Palatine Chapel in the Palace of the Normans. Outside, there are few clues to its astonishing interior, completely covered in glittering 12th century mosaics. In the afternoon, there is free time to explore or shop in Palermo or continue sightseeing. In the evening, join your fellow guests and Travel Director at a local restaurant for a Celebration Dinner of delicious local cuisine and wine.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    Day 14 - Depart Palermo.

    Your journey draws to an end. Departure transfers arrive at Palermo Falcone-Borsellino Airport at 06:00 and 08:00.(Breakfast)

    Prices/Dates

    All Prices are in Australian Dollars

    Start
    Date
    End
    Date
    Definite
    Departure
    Tour
    Availability
    Brochure Price Our
    Price
    Single Price Twin Price
    24 Aug 2019 06 Sep 2019 AUD $6455 AUD $5325 AUD $4393
    07 Sep 2019 20 Sep 2019   AUD $6645 AUD $5425 AUD $4475
    14 Sep 2019 27 Sep 2019   AUD $6645 AUD $5425 AUD $4475
    21 Sep 2019 04 Oct 2019 AUD $6615 AUD $5395 AUD $4450
    28 Sep 2019 11 Oct 2019 AUD $6515 AUD $5295 AUD $4368
    05 Oct 2019 18 Oct 2019 AUD $6515 AUD $5295 AUD $4368
    12 Oct 2019 25 Oct 2019 AUD $6515 AUD $5295 AUD $4368

    Map

    Dynamic Map

    Zoom in and take a closer look at each city you will visit.

    Static Map

    Below you will find the basic route in which you will travel on this tour.