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Stop in beautiful Malta

Hidden Treasures of Sicily

Palmero Roundtrip - Example 9 Day Cruise aboard SH Diana
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On this 9-day cultural excursion voyage onboard SH Diana, explore the Hidden Treasures of Sicily. Discover the heart of the Mediterranean on this fascinating Sicilian cultural cruise. Sicily is a wonderful concoction of rich history, culinary delights, vibrant culture, and striking natural landscapes. Aboard the 5-star boutique cultural cruise ship, you’ll experience the best of this beautiful island in comfort and style. From bustling Palermo to glamorous Taormina, and from the intriguing Valley of the Temples to the Salt Pans of Trapani, this alluring Italian gem has much to offer.
View of VallettaExplore Malta's capitalAgrigento Valley of the TemplesPopeye Village (original film set of movie Popeye), MaltaRelax in beautiful SicilyExplore ruins in Taormina within view of volcanic Mount EtnaBeautiful Taormina, Italy, with Mt. Etna in the backgroundStop in beautiful Malta
Highlights
  • Visit the tomb of Archimedes in Siracusa’s necropolis
  • Uncover the Valley of the Temples, a UNESCO World Heritage site
  • Explore one of the most concentrated historic areas in the world
  • Observe pink flamingos and cranes at the Nature Reserve of the Salt Pans of
Places Visited
Activity Level: Relaxed
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Palermo | Embark

A feast for the senses, Sicily’s capital is an intoxicating and chaotic melting pot. Bustling street markets, ancient buildings, opulent palaces and millennia of history await those ready to embrace Palmero for all that it offers. Palmero’s history is complex, to say the least. Middle Eastern, Northern African and European influences are all melded together here. The Greeks, Romans, Carthaginians, Arabs, Goths and Vandals have come and gone through the ages, leaving countless treasures in their wake. The 12th-century Arab-Norman cathedral, built over a 9th-century mosque, houses the tombs of the Norman rulers and is a fitting manifestation of the city’s convoluted past. The opulent Palazzo de Normanni, once the seat of power for the kings of Sicily during Norman rule, is a dazzling display of the opulence that the city’s rulers once enjoyed.

Day 2: Lipari

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The largest of the Aeolian Islands, Lipari is typically Mediterranean in its landscape. The island’s lava quarries, low-lying shrubbery and precipitous cliffs feel familiar yet unchartered. Lipari Town is a busy little port with pretty pastel-colored buildings lining the harbor and plenty of cafes and restaurants where visitors can watch the world go by. Above the harbor is the fortified citadel and castle, built by the Spaniards in the 16th century. The fascinating citadel houses archaeological findings that span aeons and empires, some thought to be as much as 6,000 years old.

Day 3: Taormina

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Indulge in some Sicilian dolce vita in glamorous Taormina. Perched on the side of a mountain, Taormina has been Sicily’s most popular tourist destination for several hundred years. The beautifully restored medieval buildings, incredible views and winding streets crammed with vibrant bars, fashionable shops and lively restaurants make it easy to see why. However, the biggest draw is the Greek-Roman theatre, built in the 3rd century BC and still going strong. Home to plays, fashion shows, concerts and festivals, the iconic venue offers spectacular views of the smoking Mount Edna and the Bay of Naxos below.

Day 4: Siracusa

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Once the biggest city in the ancient world, Siracusa wears its history proudly on just about every street corner. Ancient Greek ruins rise out of heavenly citrus orchards, traditional cafes tumble onto baroque piazzas and ancient lanes lead down to the sparkling Mediterranean, as they have for millennia. The city was founded in 734 BC by Corinthian colonists, and the ruins of the original city can be explored at the Parco Archeologico della Neapolis, one of Sicily’s greatest archaeological sites. Nearby you can also visit the macabre yet fascinating necropolis, housing some of the region’s most renowned historical figures, including the famed mathematician Archimedes.

Day 5: Valletta

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Compact yet elegant, Malta’s capital city was built by the Knights of St John in the 16th century. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site, Valletta is one of the most concentrated historic areas in the world. Although there are ancient sites just about everywhere, Valletta does well in striking a balance between the ancient and the modern. The Renzo Piano-designed City Gate, Parliament Building and Opera House have changed the cityscape and brought the city into the modern era with sensitivity. Valetta is also within easy reach of many of Malta’s other offerings including stunning beaches, cliffs overlooking crystalline seas and the historic Three Cities.

Day 6: Porto Empedocles

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Situated on the south-western coast of Sicily, Porto Empedocles was named after the philosopher Empedocles who lived in the region in the 5th century BC. The marina town serves as a gateway to the highlights of Sicily’s Agrigento region, including the archaeological Valley of the Temples. This UNESCO World Heritage site dates back to the 5th century BC and houses some of the best-preserved Ancient Greek ruins in the world outside of Greece. The nearby town of Agrigento has a medieval core and several interesting archaeological sites. Wander through its narrow, winding alleyways and explore the smart shops, lively restaurants and friendly bars.

Day 7-8: Trapani

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
The old port town of Trapani sits on a crescent-shaped peninsula on Sicily’s west coast. The town was once the hub of an old trading network that stretched from Carthage to Venice, and evidence of its prosperous past can still be seen throughout the old town. The coastline just south of Trapani is lined with salt pans, and here you can visit the Nature Reserve of the Salt Pans of Trapani and Paceco. This unique saline environment attracts a plethora of migratory bird species including pink flamingos and cranes. The salt pans along this coastline are used in the production of salt, an industry believed to date back to the 12-century.

Day 9: Palermo | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
A feast for the senses, Sicily’s capital is an intoxicating and chaotic melting pot. Bustling street markets, ancient buildings, opulent palaces and millennia of history await those ready to embrace Palmero for all that it offers. Palmero’s history is complex, to say the least. Middle Eastern, Northern African and European influences are all melded together here. The Greeks, Romans, Carthaginians, Arabs, Goths and Vandals have come and gone through the ages, leaving countless treasures in their wake. The 12th-century Arab-Norman cathedral, built over a 9th-century mosque, houses the tombs of the Norman rulers and is a fitting manifestation of the city’s convoluted past. The opulent Palazzo de Normanni, once the seat of power for the kings of Sicily during Norman rule, is a dazzling display of the opulence that the city’s rulers once enjoyed.

Ship/Hotel

SH Diana

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$5,826
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Oceanview D4
Oceanview staterooms features 2 single beds, bedroom and living room and a luxurious ensuite bathroom.
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Oceanview M4
Oceanview staterooms features 2 single beds, bedroom and living room and a luxurious ensuite bathroom.
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Balcony D5
Located on decks 5, these balcony staterooms feature 2 single beds or a double bed, distinct bedroom and living room areas, a luxurious bathroom and your own private 6 sq. m balcony.
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Balcony M5
Located on decks 5, these balcony staterooms feature 2 single beds or a double bed, distinct bedroom and living room areas, a luxurious bathroom and your own private 6 sq. m balcony.
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Balcony D6
Located on decks 6, these balcony staterooms feature 2 single beds or a double bed, distinct bedroom and living room areas, a luxurious bathroom and your own private 6 sq. m balcony.
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Junior Suite
SH Diana’s Junior Suites features a Super King Size bed, separate living room area with homely flame-effect fireplace, private kitchen, luxurious en-suite bathroom and a 7 sq. m private balcony.
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Suite
Our Suites features a superking bed and separate living room with and a soothing flame-effect fireplace a luxurious ensuite bathroom and a 12 sq.m. private balcony.
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Premium Suite
SH Diana’s Premium Suites feature a Super King Size bed, separate living room with homely flame-effect fireplace, luxurious en-suite bathroom, spacious walk-in wardrobe and a 12 sq. m private balcony.
Included
  • 8 Breakfasts, 7 Lunches, 8 Dinners
  • 8 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Room Service 
  • Wifi
  • Coffee, tea, soft drinks & select alcoholic beverages 24 hours a day.
  • Lecture programs by our experienced expedition team and guest speakers
  • Onboard gratuities & port taxes
  • Branded Swan Hellenic expedition parka and use of rubber boots in Polar Regions.
  • All transfers between Airport, Hotel and Ship
Excluded
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Passport and Applicable Visa Expenses

Map

When to Go

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.

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The trip was terrific with great planning on your part. Most of the adventures were not mainstream and somewhat off the beaten path which made it especially enjoyable!! We felt taken care of and you all were readily available to respond to questions and issues. I would highly recommend your company and friends have already expressed interest based on our pictures and excitement.
Gale Cantor
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