Sicily

Journey through the Parks

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"Viaggio tra i Parchi" (Journey through the Parks) is a tour that will take us on a discovery of an unexpected Sicily amidst the suggestions and panoramas of its protected areas (Alcantara River Park, Etna Park, Nebrodi Park and Madonie Park), far from the traditional tourist circuits. We will explore the paths that wind through the rocky gorges of the Alcantara River Park, and discover the landscape populated by a varied and characteristic biodiversity; we will hike in the Etna Park, crossing the birch forests, experiencing the thrill of walking on the lava paths, in some places shrouded in smoke; We will discover the medieval village of Randazzo with its typical lava stone architecture and reach Santo Stefano di Camastra, for a visit to the artisan workshops where ceramics are worked; we will immerse ourselves in the historical and naturalistic heritage of the Madonie Park and (depending on the time of departure) take part in a guided visit to the town of Cefalù, famous for its Byzantine cathedral and its characteristic historical centre. We will thus savour an authentic Sicily, which will be able to project us into dimensions unique in the world, to be discovered stage by stage.

This proposal includes (on request) the opportunity to extend one's stay with a post-tour and a pre-tour for a more complete and tailor-made travel experience.

"Viaggio tra i Parchi" (Journey through the Parks) is a tour to discover the charms and panoramas of Sicily's protected areas (Alcantara River Park, Etna Park, Nebrodi Park and Madonie Park), in which we will cross different scenarios, characterised by environmental and cultural peculiarities that cannot be found elsewhere. An adventure that will allow us to explore geographical areas that encompass an extreme variability of landscapes, ideal for attentive and motivated travellers, lovers of nature, traditions and food and wine, who will be able to enjoy experiential activities in an ecosystem that may have never been seen before, in contact with the communities of the local villages, appreciating the local specialities and the proverbial island hospitality.

This proposal includes (on request) the opportunity to extend one's stay with a tailor-made post-tour or pre-tour for an even more complete and tailor-made traveller experience.

PRE-TOUR: Catania, Taormina, Syracuse
Before starting the tour you can stay at Catania in 4* hotels, and customise the trip with a city tour and participate in excursions to Taormina and the Greek Theatre or to Syracuse and the Neapolis Archaeological Park. Upon request, it is also possible to participate in experiential activities (tailoring workshop for the preparation of Sicilian 'coffees' or cooking experience for the preparation of arancini).

POST-TOUR: somatic trekking, horseback riding, Palermo
To continue to get to know Sicily, we suggest continuing the experience with a customised programme that includes someggiato trekking (hiking along paths in the Madonie Park accompanied by donkeys that, in addition to carrying the weight of the backpack, support the hiker in moments of fatigue) or, for moderately experienced riders, also on horseback, for 1 or 2 days along the ancient mountain trails. The post-tour stay is in a 4* farmhouse in Lascarifrom which an interesting trail runs through another side of the Madonie Park. All guiding, assistance and logistical services are guaranteed.

It is also possible to stay at Palermo in 4* hotels, visit the city with its UNESCO World Heritage-listed Arab-Norman itineraries, indulge in Palermo's street food and immerse yourself in the noisy atmosphere of the city markets.

Programme

Day 1

Alcantara Gorge

After arriving at Catania Fontanarossa airport, we will reach the 4* resort by coach. After accommodation and lunch at the resort, we will begin our adventure among the parks to discover unique landscapes and ecosystems characterised by an interesting biodiversity. We will be accompanied by a guide to the River Alcantara Fluvial Park, where we will be able to admire rare and unusual scenery and walk along the paths that run along the gorges, real canyons of lava basalt excavated by the river. In the evening we will return to our Resort to enjoy a dinner of typical local products.

Hotel planned for days 1, 2
Il Borgo Country Resort or equivalent
Programme
11.30 Arrival at Catania Fontanarossa Airport and transfer to Resort
13.30 Arrival at the Resort
15.30 - 17.30 Visit to the Alcantara Gorges
20.00 Dinner with typical products

Day 2

Etna Park

The second day of our trip is dedicated to the Etna Park, where we will walk through birch forests to the Sartorius Mountains nature trail, characterised by the typical button-shaped eruption, and admire the volcano from different angles and heights, experiencing the thrill of walking on the lava paths, in some places shrouded in smoke. After a packed lunch, return to the Resort with dinner, folk music show and overnight stay.
Programme
08.00 Breakfast
09.30 - 16.30 Excursion to Etna Park with the possibility of horseback riding
17.30 Return to the Resort
20.00 Dinner
21.30 Folk music

Day 3

Between Etna Park and Nebrodi Park

After breakfast in the resort, we will visit a local winery that has won important international awards. Lunch will take place at the winery and will be accompanied by a guided wine tasting. The tour continues to Randazzo, a medieval village characterised by fascinating lava stone architecture that recalls the ancient urban layout and bears witness to the passage of centuries along the city walls and streets. This will be followed by the transfer to Cesarò and accommodation in the Rifugio Relais**** with dinner and overnight stay.

Hotel planned for days 3,4
Relais Villa Miraglia or equivalent
Programme
08.00 Breakfast
09.30 - 11.30 Visit to winery
13.30 Lunch
15.30 Transfer Randazzo
17.30 Transfer Cesarò
20.00 dinner

Day 4

Lake Maulazzo and Biviere

We will begin our activities with an experiential breakfast where you can experience the thrill of milking sheep and making ricotta cheese, or, depending on the time of year, other engaging activities that will bring you closer to the processing of typical local raw materials. We will then set off on a full-day excursion to Lago Maulazzo and Biviere, in the heart of the Nebrodi Park. Here we will be enveloped in the unspoilt nature of the place and observe the particular species of flora and fauna found in this varied ecosystem. This will be followed by a packed lunch with return to the refuge, dinner and overnight stay.
Programme
08.00 - 90.30 breakfast
09.30 - 15.30 Departure for Lake Mulazzo and Biviere + packed lunch
17.30 Return to the Relais
20.00 Dinner


Day 5

Nebrodi Park

We will reach Santo Stefano di Camastra, the town of ceramics: here we will be able to discover, thanks to a guided tour, the colourful craft workshops that populate the town's streets and get to know at first hand this form of craftsmanship that still lives on in the hands of local masters. We will have lunch at a local trattoria and leave for Castelbuono. This will be followed by accommodation at an Agriturismo***, dinner and overnight stay.

Hotel planned for 5, 6
Bergi farmhouse or equivalent
Programme
08.00 Breakfast
09.30 - 11.30 Departure for Santo Stefano Camastra and visit to craft workshops
13.30 Lunch in a typical restaurant
17.00 Transfer to Castelbuono
20.00 Dinner

Day 6

Madonie Park

We will prepare for a full-day excursion, with packed lunch, to the Madonie Park, to discover its natural and historical heritage. Here, amidst hermitages, rock churches and centuries-old olive groves, we will discover the ancient signs that man left in these places during prehistoric times among the oldest rocks in Sicily marked by fossils of algae and sponges that are still found among the highest peaks. We will immerse ourselves in a varied nature, furrowed by plains, hilly areas, cliffs and mountain peaks. Finally, we will end our busy day with a return to the farm, dinner and overnight stay.
Programme
08.00 Breakfast
09.30 - 17.30 Departure for hike + packed lunch
20.00 Dinner

Day 7

Cefalù

After breakfast, depending on the time of departure, there will be a stop in Cefalù, a characteristic town famous for its impressive cathedral rich in Byzantine influences and its ancient village. After a guided tour of the historic centre, it will also be possible to climb the cathedral's towers. Alternatively, we will say goodbye in the hope of seeing each other again for the next tour and you will be accompanied to the airport for your departure. We remind you that this travel proposal is accompanied by a tailor-made post-tour and pre-tour, to be booked on request.
Programme
08.00 Breakfast
9 a.m. - 11.30 a.m. Departure and visit to the town of Cefalù
14.00 Transfer to the airport
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