Now you can enjoy touring East Sicily on this fabulous road bike tour on this beautiful historic Island. Sicily being in a strategic position has been influenced over the centuries by the Romans and the Greeks. This road bike cycling holiday you can explore a mythical land, stunning baroque architecture and some amazing archaeological sites. During the route, you shall visit the Erei mountains and the Val di Noto which was totally destroyed in 1693 by an earthquake, since it has been restored in the Baroque style of its time. The region was even declared in 2003 as a World Heritage site in 2003.
As you cycle by bike daily you shall discover beautiful towns like Caltagirone, famous for the handicraft ceramics, Palazzolo Acreide, Modica, Scicli, Ragusa Ibla and Noto to name but a few. These are the most important of the baroque cities in Sicily. You shall even come across Piazza Armerina, known for the mosaics of the Roman Villa del Casale. Of course, your tour will end in the Jewel of Greek sites on Sicily, Syracuse. If you are a bird-loving then the coastal region here is a well-known place for migratory birds to stop. This is a great varied tour which not only allows you to cycle some longer distances but also has some very interesting sites to visit during your vacation, we are sure you shall be talking about your travels long after your departure.
It is a requirement of booking this tour with Hooked on Cycling that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the chosen activity and for emergency evacuation and hospital care.
Individual arrival at Caltagirone.
On Minor roads, you head out of Caltagirone on your road bike towards the town of Piazza Armerina. Just outside Piazza Armerina, you have the opportunity to visit the Roman la Villa del Casale. This grand Roman Villa was discovered only in 1950. It has one of the largest if not largest collections of Roman mosaics in the world. For this reason, the site has been awarded UNESCO world heritage status. Test have revealed that these artefacts date from the 4th century and cover an astounding area of around 3000 square metres of coloured mosaic floors. The villa also has a collection of wonderful inside and outside frescoes. The excavations are still ongoing when in 2004 a large mediaeval settlement of the 10-12th centuries was also found. Since then further sumptuous rooms of the villa have also been revealed. After your visit, you return back to Caltagirone.
Today’s route is undulating but with many interesting historical and natural wonders to see. First, you cycling on small roads towards a small town called Vizzini, here the Italian writer Giovanni Verga who was famous in the early 20th century for writing novels based around his native Sicily, mainly within this small town! The layout of the town is Arab in style and has a number of ancient buildings worthwhile exploring. After a short visit of Vizzini, you continue by bike along a plateau which is characterised by deep canyons which are called “cave” in this area. One of the most interesting canyons is the Valle dell’Anapo which is surrounded by the villages historic villages of Ferla, Cassaro and Palazzolo Acreide.
If you did not visit the historic old centre last night you should make a point of doing so today. There is evidence that there have been inhabitants here since the 10th century firstly by Christian’s, invaded by Arabs and destroyed by an earthquake in the 17th century. Over the following centuries, it has been slowing rebuilt. After visiting the historical centre of Palazzolo Acreide you cycle through the beautiful region of the Monti Iblei which has a unique landscape, where rugged and wild areas alternate with pleasant green scenery, characterized by some typical stonewalls. This quite short stage allows you also to visit one of the architectonical jewels of the area, Ragusa Ibla. This commune dates back to the 2nd century BC.
Today’s stage is quite easy although pretty long. You will start cycling slightly downhill in the beautiful Iblei Canyon where you shall arrive in Scicli. After a visit to its old centre, you continue by road bike to the south coast until you arrive at the Isola delle Correnti, which marks the watershed between the Ionian and the Mediterranean Sea. Here you continue to Portopalo di Capo Passero, the southernmost city of Sicily. After this, the route takes you to the ancient fishing village of Marzamemi, the wildlife sanctuary of Vendicari where you have a wonderful and uncontaminated coastline full of interesting plants and rare birds. After this, you will continue to the most famous baroque town of all, Noto.
Your final destination is now within reach. Today you have a nice warm-up as you cycle from Noto uphill to San Corrado before then arriving in Noto Antica situated on Monte Alveria. The from Noto Antica we continue by road bike until we arrive at the vista point of the nature reserve Cava Grande del Cassibile which is located at 505m above seas level. Here we find some interesting archaeological remains. Here the landscape is dominated by a canyon which is 300 metres deep and with very steep cliffs, it is apparently one of Europe’s deepest! After a photo session, you continue onto Syracuse.
Today you have a full day to explore the incredible sites of Syracuse. You can visit the fascinating Island Ortigia, the historical and cultural centre of the city. The Old Town of Syracusa will captivate you immediately with more than 3000 years of history and archaeological evidence of practically all great civilizations of the Mediterranean.
Depart after breakfast.
We suggest booking the incoming transfer from Catania airport however should you wish to travel by public transport then you can take the shuttle to Catania and then a train to Caltagirone ( 2 buses per day), this journey takes around 2.5 hours.
2021 Prices – For complete tour price breakdown please click the book now button and select your holiday tour date. Prices will then be listed.
|Tour Code||Prices From (per person)||Book Now|
|ESicilyRB (7 Nights)||from £763||Book Now|