Italy's north may have the euros...
but the south has the soul!
Italy’s north may have the euros, but the south has the soul. Sun-bleached and weathered, this is Italy at its most ancient, complex and contradictory. At the crossroads of civilisations for millennia, southern Italy is littered with the detritus of diverse and gilded ages, from Greek and Roman to Saracen, Norman and Spanish. Every carved stone and every frescoed palace tells a story, from fiery Carthaginian invasions and power-hungry kings, to the humble hopes of Roman slaves and gladiators. Here, ancient Greek temples are older than Rome!
Rugged mountains, fiery volcanoes and electric-blue grottoes – southern Italy feels like one giant adventure playground waiting to be tackled. The options may be many, but there is one constant: a landscape that is beautiful, diverse and just a little ethereal.
Finally, no one is a stranger for long, and a casual chiacchiera (chat) could easily land you at the dining table of your new best friend.
Day 1: Igoumenitsa - Italy
Departure from the port of Igoumenitsa. Arrangement in cabins and sail for Bari. Enjoy the comforts of the modern ship and make the journey as special as can be. Overnight stay at sea.
Day 2: Taranto - Metaponto - Messina
Arrival in the morning and immediately depart for Taranto, a city founded by the Spartans in 708 BC. We will visit the archaeological museum and the city, which to date is an impressive metropolis of the South. We will also see the island of Tsitantela, Mar Picollo and Grande. In Metaponto, the city where Pythagoras lived in Samos, we will see the Dorian Temple of Laiki Hera. We continue our journey through the panoramic coasts of Calabria and the Tyrrhenian Sea. Arrival at Villa San Giovanni and by boat we pass across to Messina, to our hotel.
Day 3: Messina - Kefalou - Palermo
After breakfast we will depart to visit Messina, where we will see the Church of Virgin Mary of Gorgopigiou, the Oriental Fontana and the old town. In Kastroreale, we will meet with a music-dancing Association of the town and we will get to know the culture of the medieval village. (if you want this meeting, otherwise we avoid it, but it’s a nice experience). In the Medieval Head we will visit the Temple of Roger of Normand with the famous Byzantine mosaics. We continue for the medieval washers and we will wander in the medieval neighborhoods. Dinner. Overnight rest in Palermo.
Day 4: Palermo
In today’s tour we will meet the charming Palermo where they blend in a unique way elements of Byzantine, Arabic and European civilization. We will see the churches of Martorana, Agios Ioannis the Hermit with the red domes, the Norman palace with the baroque façade and visit the 12th century Montreal Cathedral, 8 km southwest of Palermo, with magnificent Byzantine mosaics and the Arabic-style peristyle space with its fountain. The rest of the day is at your disposal. You can visit the picturesque Vucheria, the famous Palermo outdoor market. Dinner and overnight stay in Palermo.
Day 5: Palermo - Agrigento - Catania
The first visit of our current route is the Agrigento of the ancient Greeks, the most beautiful of all the mortal cities, according to the classic Pindar. We will take you to the main archaeological site of Sicily, the Valley of the Temples or Valle dei Templi, with ruins of the temples of Zeus, Hera, Hercules, Dioscours, Omonia and others. We continue for the second largest city in Sicily, the modern one Catania. We will arrange in our hotel and make a visit to the city, dinner, overnight stay.
Day 6: Catania - Syracuse - Catania
Today we will meet the most important city of Greater Greece, Syracuse, founded by the Corinthians in the 8th century BC. century and was one of the most important metropolis of antiquity. We will visit the Archaeological Park and Ortigia where we will see the Altar of Ieron, the ancient Greek theater, the paradise quarries, the temples of Athena and Apollo, the Source of Arethousa and others. Leisure on the island of Ortygia to stroll along scenic streets or enjoy an “espresso” enjoying the view of the historic harbor. Return to Catania, visit the Cathedral, where is the relic of Agia Agatha.
Day 7: Taormina - Reggio Emilia - Lecce
Breakfast and departure to Taormina where we will visit the ancient Greek theater and we will have time to enjoy the picturesque resort town in our own personal way. On our way we will visit the Museum of Great Greece in Rigos with the unique riches and unique warriors of Riace. Our trip today is in Calabria until the Valley of Sivaritis. Lecce is famous for the artwork made from pressed paper. Santa Croce and the neighborhoods of Duomo that will be seen on a panoramic walk give us a good picture of the city.
Day 8 Greek-speaking villages - Brindisi or Bari - Return home
After breakfast, depart for a visit to representative Greek-speaking villages such as Sternate, Martano, Coriliano where we will see the medieval castle. an event will follow – meetings with Greek-speaking villages. At Kalimera we will meet the Cultural Association and visit the Cathedral. Departure for Bari where we will be settled in our cabins and sail back to Greece.