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Treasures of Sicily

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Road Scholar
Program #18212RJ
17 Days | 16 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Active
Road Scholar has thousands of educational adventures to choose from. A good way to narrow down our list is to browse our collection of "Most Popular" programs.
See all of our Most Popular programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.

Itinerary for Oct 10 — Oct 26, 2015

Expand all
Day One: Saturday, October 10 - Departure from points in North America.
In Transit: Overnight flight crosses the Atlantic Ocean. Arrive in Catania, Sicily the following day.

Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: The Hellenia Yachting Hotel is not in Taormina proper, but seaside just a few miles to the south in the quiet beach community of Giardini-Naxos

Contact info:
Via Jannuzzo, 41
Giardini-Naxos, NA 98035 Italy
phone: +39 0942 51737
web: www.hotel-hellenia.it

Room amenities: Each room is equipped with private bath, a television set, mini bar, hair dryer, complimentary toiletries, and safe box for valuables.

Facility amenities: The hotel has elegant and modern decor. Situated on the shore, a small private beach for hotel guests and swimming pool, open May to September. Large dining room, elevators to all floors, laundry service. Free Wi-Fi connectivity in the lobby, rooms and on the terrace. For checking emails, an internet point is located in the lobby. Laundry service available.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: varies by season
You can book additional nights directly through the hotel’s online reservation system www.hotel-hellenia.it. Indicate to the hotel that you are with the Road Scholar group and every effort will be made to ensure continuity of room assignment. Another option is to use online consolidator services such as Hotels.com or Expedia.

Check in time: 2:00 PM


Day Two: Sunday, October 11 - Arrival \ Welcome Reception
Note: Minimal exertion.

Arrive To: Transfer from Catania airport to hotel in Giardini Naxos.

Lunch: Lunch at the hotel.

Afternoon: Settle in and relax before meeting for an informal gathering and reception to welcome you to Sicily. At the sea side resort you can walk along the rocky beach or wander around the main street of the seaside resort community.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel.

Lodging: Hellenia Yachting Hotel

Meals Included: Lunch, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: The Hellenia Yachting Hotel is not in Taormina proper, but seaside just a few miles to the south in the quiet beach community of Giardini-Naxos

Contact info:
Via Jannuzzo, 41
Giardini-Naxos, NA 98035 Italy
phone: +39 0942 51737
web: www.hotel-hellenia.it

Room amenities: Each room is equipped with private bath, a television set, mini bar, hair dryer, complimentary toiletries, and safe box for valuables.

Facility amenities: The hotel has elegant and modern decor. Situated on the shore, a small private beach for hotel guests and swimming pool, open May to September. Large dining room, elevators to all floors, laundry service. Free Wi-Fi connectivity in the lobby, rooms and on the terrace. For checking emails, an internet point is located in the lobby. Laundry service available.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: varies by season
You can book additional nights directly through the hotel’s online reservation system www.hotel-hellenia.it. Indicate to the hotel that you are with the Road Scholar group and every effort will be made to ensure continuity of room assignment. Another option is to use online consolidator services such as Hotels.com or Expedia.

Check in time: 2:00 PM


Day Three: Monday, October 12 - Orientation \ Neighborhood Walk \ History of Sici...
Note: Minimal exertion.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Staff distributes the most updated day-to-day schedule and goes over logistics and pointers to ensure a safe and enjoyable program. A short walk follows in the vicinity of the hotel pointing out bank (ATM), pharmacy and markets. First of a series of lectures on Sicily’s history. Topics include the ancient Mediterranean colonizers--people from Greece, Phoenicia, Carthage and their impact on this area of Sicily.

Lunch: Lunch at the hotel restaurant.

Afternoon: The group leader leads a walk past the ruins of the original Greek settlement to the center of the town of Naxos.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel restaurant.

Lodging: Hellenia Yachting Hotel

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: The Hellenia Yachting Hotel is not in Taormina proper, but seaside just a few miles to the south in the quiet beach community of Giardini-Naxos

Contact info:
Via Jannuzzo, 41
Giardini-Naxos, NA 98035 Italy
phone: +39 0942 51737
web: www.hotel-hellenia.it

Room amenities: Each room is equipped with private bath, a television set, mini bar, hair dryer, complimentary toiletries, and safe box for valuables.

Facility amenities: The hotel has elegant and modern decor. Situated on the shore, a small private beach for hotel guests and swimming pool, open May to September. Large dining room, elevators to all floors, laundry service. Free Wi-Fi connectivity in the lobby, rooms and on the terrace. For checking emails, an internet point is located in the lobby. Laundry service available.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: varies by season
You can book additional nights directly through the hotel’s online reservation system www.hotel-hellenia.it. Indicate to the hotel that you are with the Road Scholar group and every effort will be made to ensure continuity of room assignment. Another option is to use online consolidator services such as Hotels.com or Expedia.

Check in time: 2:00 PM


Day Four: Tuesday, October 13 - Taormina \ Free Time in the Afternoon \ Folklore ...
Note: The streets of Taormina are traffic free. The 20 min. coach ride to the parking lot of Mt. Tauro still leaves a 400 yard walk up an inclined road. Once on top, the road is fairly level. At the archaeological site there are few handrails to assist walking up the steep and uneven stone steps. If you are unsure of the climb, you can take in the theater and majestic view of Mt. Etna from the proscenium. The roads in town down to and up from the public garden requires some effort.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: The guided visit of Taormina, charming town on the crest of Mount Tauro, begins at the open air Greek theater. The location is optimal to view the expansive slopes of Mount Etna as its backdrop. The traffic-free streets of the town are lined with shops, boutiques and cafés. It has long been a resort destination for nobility, artists and actors.

Lunch: Lunch on your own in any of the local restaurants.

Afternoon: Free time to stroll, shop, or relax in the welcoming piazzas of Taormina. The public garden offers a splendid view of the coastlines below. The manicured garden has numerous flowering plants, bushes and trees. It is a good place for a picnic if you prefer. Coach back to Giardini Naxos late afternoon for a lecture on Sicilian Folklore and Traditions.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel.

Lodging: Hellenia Yachting Hotel

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: The Hellenia Yachting Hotel is not in Taormina proper, but seaside just a few miles to the south in the quiet beach community of Giardini-Naxos

Contact info:
Via Jannuzzo, 41
Giardini-Naxos, NA 98035 Italy
phone: +39 0942 51737
web: www.hotel-hellenia.it

Room amenities: Each room is equipped with private bath, a television set, mini bar, hair dryer, complimentary toiletries, and safe box for valuables.

Facility amenities: The hotel has elegant and modern decor. Situated on the shore, a small private beach for hotel guests and swimming pool, open May to September. Large dining room, elevators to all floors, laundry service. Free Wi-Fi connectivity in the lobby, rooms and on the terrace. For checking emails, an internet point is located in the lobby. Laundry service available.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: varies by season
You can book additional nights directly through the hotel’s online reservation system www.hotel-hellenia.it. Indicate to the hotel that you are with the Road Scholar group and every effort will be made to ensure continuity of room assignment. Another option is to use online consolidator services such as Hotels.com or Expedia.

Check in time: 2:00 PM


Day Five: Wednesday, October 14 - Reggio Calabria and the Riace Warriors \ Messina
Note: Coach to Messina and a 20 minute ferry ride across the Strait of Messina to Reggio Calabria. Some walking in Reggio. Walk around the center of Messina over paved, level sidewalks.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Coach to Messina and ferry across the Strait of Messina to Reggio Calabria to see the Riace Warriors, full-size bronze statues cast around 450 BCE. Our expert will talk about their discovery, restoration and preservation. The archaeological museum that houses the statues is undergoing restoration and the expert will maximize our time there.

Lunch: Lunch at a local seaside restaurant in the ancient city of Scilla, named after the mythological marine monster, read her description in Homer's Odyssey Book XII.

Afternoon: Ferry back to Messina. Notice the uniform early 20th century architecture resulting from the rebuilding following the disastrous 1908 earthquake that leveled the city. A brief stop at the main square in Messina where you can enjoy a Sicilian gelato or cannoli. Coach continues to Giardini Naxos.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel.

Lodging: Hellenia Yachting Hotel

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: The hotel is next door to the Duomo (which was a Greek temple to Minerva) and square on the small island of Ortygia, the historic center of Syracuse where the Baroque palaces and seawalks are located. Ortygia is connected by a small bridge to the modern neighborhoods of Syracuse.

Contact info:
Via Roma, 66
Syracuse, NA 96100 Italy
phone: +39 0931 465 626
web: www.hotelroma.sr.it

Room amenities: Satellite television, mini-bar, safe box for valuables, hair dryer and individual climate control.

Facility amenities: Fine dining at the hotel's restaurant. Comfortable lobby with internet point and lounge with bar service. Fitness room. Sign out one of bicycles available to guests. Laundry service available.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes


Day Six: Thursday, October 15 - Italy Today \ Transfer to Syracuse \ Ortygia
Note: The Island of Ortygia is closed to coach traffic; the coach drop off point is on the mainland. Short walk to the hotel over a pedestrian bridge. Porterage service will transfer luggage from the coach to the hotel.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: A morning session on the institutions that characterize Italy today. Check out of the hotel. Coach drives along the coast past the city of Catania to an agriturismo near Mt. Etna. Observe the change in perspective of the looming mountain, the highest active volcano in Europe.

Lunch: Lunch at an agriturismo, a working farm on the slopes of Mt. Etna. Visit the estate and the garden and orchards that thrive on the fertile volcanic soil and enjoy freshly prepared Sicilian dishes.

Afternoon: Another hour of coach ride to Syracuse. Check into the hotel on the island of Ortygia.

Dinner: At hotel restaurant and free time to walk around the pedestrian friendly zone.

Lodging: Hotel Roma

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: The hotel is next door to the Duomo (which was a Greek temple to Minerva) and square on the small island of Ortygia, the historic center of Syracuse where the Baroque palaces and seawalks are located. Ortygia is connected by a small bridge to the modern neighborhoods of Syracuse.

Contact info:
Via Roma, 66
Syracuse, NA 96100 Italy
phone: +39 0931 465 626
web: www.hotelroma.sr.it

Room amenities: Satellite television, mini-bar, safe box for valuables, hair dryer and individual climate control.

Facility amenities: Fine dining at the hotel's restaurant. Comfortable lobby with internet point and lounge with bar service. Fitness room. Sign out one of bicycles available to guests. Laundry service available.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes


Day Seven: Friday, October 16 - Expert-led visit to Ortygia \ Archaeological Zone...
Note: The quarries served as a source of stone, and the descent is slight, with uneven pavement and few handrails. Greek theaters are built using the slope of a hill. Ascent is a little steep, not unlike a modern stadium. You may rest on the stone 'bleachers.'

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Orientation walk explores the oldest part of the city of Syracuse. The cathedral is a living example of the different cultures that colonized Sicily, each lending its own architectural style. Twenty six Doric columns from the 5th c. BCE temple to Athena are incorporated in the cathedral. Visit the cathedral's interior which was rebuilt in the 18th century with a distinctive Sicilian Baroque style when the ancient facade collapsed in an earthquake. Local artisan workshops, cafés and boutiques abound in Ortygia's pedestrian center of narrow streets and lively squares.

Lunch: Lunch on your own.

Afternoon: Guided visit to the Archaeological zone in Syracuse, including the Greek theater and the Paradise Quarry, where 7,000 Athenian soldiers were imprisoned centuries ago. The Greek theater, carved out of the rocky hillside in the 5th century BCE, was one of the most important theaters in the ancient world.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel.

Lodging: Hotel Roma

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: The hotel is next door to the Duomo (which was a Greek temple to Minerva) and square on the small island of Ortygia, the historic center of Syracuse where the Baroque palaces and seawalks are located. Ortygia is connected by a small bridge to the modern neighborhoods of Syracuse.

Contact info:
Via Roma, 66
Syracuse, NA 96100 Italy
phone: +39 0931 465 626
web: www.hotelroma.sr.it

Room amenities: Satellite television, mini-bar, safe box for valuables, hair dryer and individual climate control.

Facility amenities: Fine dining at the hotel's restaurant. Comfortable lobby with internet point and lounge with bar service. Fitness room. Sign out one of bicycles available to guests. Laundry service available.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes


Day Eight: Saturday, October 17 - Buscemi: Frozen in Time \ Agriturismo with Sicili...
Note: The main road in Buscemi traverses a low hill, but streets leading up or down require a little effort.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Coach to Buscemi. Step back in time to visit a typical Sicilian town of a century ago, depopulated by emigration. A local escort lead us through the streets, where we visit houses, shops and grape and olive presses of the previous centuries, complete with furnishings of the period. Contrast the foreman's house from that of the day laborer.

Lunch: Enjoy lunch at an 'agriturismo,' or restaurant located on a farm.

Afternoon: Coach to Syracuse mid afternoon. Enjoy some time to explore Ortygia at your own pace.

Dinner: Dinner on your own.

Lodging: Hotel Roma

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: The hotel is next door to the Duomo (which was a Greek temple to Minerva) and square on the small island of Ortygia, the historic center of Syracuse where the Baroque palaces and seawalks are located. Ortygia is connected by a small bridge to the modern neighborhoods of Syracuse.

Contact info:
Via Roma, 66
Syracuse, NA 96100 Italy
phone: +39 0931 465 626
web: www.hotelroma.sr.it

Room amenities: Satellite television, mini-bar, safe box for valuables, hair dryer and individual climate control.

Facility amenities: Fine dining at the hotel's restaurant. Comfortable lobby with internet point and lounge with bar service. Fitness room. Sign out one of bicycles available to guests. Laundry service available.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes


Day Nine: Sunday, October 18 - Archaeological Museum \ Baroque Noto
Note: Standing while learning about archaeological items on display in the museum. In Noto a short, easy walk brings you to the center of town.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Expert-led visit to the Archaeological Museum in Syracuse. The collection includes artifacts of the Greeks, Romans and early Christians who settled in Sicily.

Lunch: Lunch at a characteristic restaurant.

Afternoon: Coach continues to Noto. Rebuilt after a devastating earthquake in 1693, the town finely represents the rich architectural and artistic achievement of the late Sicilian Baroque style. The town center is closed to automobile traffic. Coach to Syracuse late afternoon.

Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.

Lodging: Hotel Roma

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: The hotel is on the San Leone beach of Agrigento and convenient to the Valley of the Temples.

Contact info:
Viale Falcone e Borsellino, 1
San Leone Agrigento, 92100 Italy
phone: +39 0922 406111
web: www.dioscurihotel.it

Room amenities: Free wifi, flat screen TV with satellite reception, mini bar, room safe, hair dryer, complimentary toiletries. Room service available.

Facility amenities: Relax in the spacious gardens and patio. Restaurant, coffee bar and lounge, swimming pool open late spring to late fall. Laundry facilities. Complimentary wifi. 24 hour reception.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes


Day Ten: Monday, October 19 - Transfer to Western Sicily \ Roman Villa Casale i...
Transfer to Western Sicily \ Roman Villa Casale in the town of Piazza Armerina

Note: The walk around the Roman villa is not strenuous. Some steps to climb to better view the mosaic pavements.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Excellent views of the diverse terrain in the mountainous heart of the island of Sicily.

Lunch: Lunch at a restaurant in the town of Piazza Armerina.

Afternoon: Piazza Armerina is a small, nondescript town outside of which were discovered, by pure chance, the ruins of a private Roman villa comprised of 63 rooms containing a most extensive and impressive series of floor mosaics (c. 377,000 sq.ft.) The expert leads the way along a path of catwalks describing the mosaics and their significance, providing the most interesting theories of the unidentified owner who commissioned the construction of the villa. Recently restored, the mosaics are protected by a Plexiglas canopy. Board coach and continue to Agrigento and check into your room.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel.

Lodging: Dioscuri Bay Palace Hotel

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: The hotel is on the San Leone beach of Agrigento and convenient to the Valley of the Temples.

Contact info:
Viale Falcone e Borsellino, 1
San Leone Agrigento, 92100 Italy
phone: +39 0922 406111
web: www.dioscurihotel.it

Room amenities: Free wifi, flat screen TV with satellite reception, mini bar, room safe, hair dryer, complimentary toiletries. Room service available.

Facility amenities: Relax in the spacious gardens and patio. Restaurant, coffee bar and lounge, swimming pool open late spring to late fall. Laundry facilities. Complimentary wifi. 24 hour reception.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes


Day Eleven: Tuesday, October 20 - Agrigento and the Valley of Temples
Note: Uneven dirt path connects the temples and museum, distance about one half mile down a slight incline. Few handrails at archaeological sites.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Expert-led visit of the Valley of the Temples. The area boasts the finest extant Greek temple complex anywhere (including Greece) lined along a plateau above the water, as well as a fascinating archaeological museum with artistic and votive finds from the area.

Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Guided visit in the Valley of Temples museum continues.

Dinner: Dinner on your own.

Lodging: Dioscuri Bay Palace Hotel

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: Formerly a Mercederian monastery (who facilitated prisoner exchanges during the 16th c.) it was combined with 2 adjacent buildings in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to form a bank and stock exchange. Newly restructured and updated in 2005 it is a modern business class hotel with full amenities. The old courtyard, supported by ancient columns, is a covered atrium. Centrally located in the heart of Palermo, near museums and opera theaters, this is an ideal location to explore the city. Enjoy the Liberty epoch decor in the common area and restaurants and modern rooms.

Contact info:
Via dei Cartari 18
Palermo, NA 90133 Italy
phone: +39 091-320-075
web: www.piazzaborsa.it

Room amenities: Direct dial telephones from room; hair dryer, complimentary toiletries; mini bar; room safe for valuables; individual thermostat; Internet connection, satellite television.

Facility amenities: Internet point in the lobby. Free Wi-Fi access. Laundry service. Conference center. Spa, massage, and aesthetic center (reservations required), Turkish bath, whirlpool, fitness center with resistance machines (free for guests). Bars, restaurants, boutiques.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights after: varies by season
You can book additional nights directly through the hotel’s online reservation system www.piazzaborsa.it. Indicate to the hotel that you are with the Road Scholar group and every effort will be made to ensure continuity of room assignment. Another option is to use online hotel consolidators such as Hotels.com or Expedia.

Check out time: 10:00 AM

Day Twelve: Wednesday, October 21 - Greek Settlement of Selinunte \ Continue to Paler...
Note: Selinunte Archaeological area has uneven paths with few or no handrails. Leisurely walk around Palermo.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: On the way to Palermo, visit the ancient Greek settlement of Selinunte with an expert. Set on a promontory with a panoramic view of the Mediterranean sea, it was an ideal site. See how columns were chiseled our of solid stone and used in the building of temples.

Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Board coach and proceed to Palermo. Check into room. At the set time meet in the lobby for a short orientation walk in the neighborhood of the hotel.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel.

Lodging: Grand Hotel Piazza Borsa

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: Formerly a Mercederian monastery (who facilitated prisoner exchanges during the 16th c.) it was combined with 2 adjacent buildings in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to form a bank and stock exchange. Newly restructured and updated in 2005 it is a modern business class hotel with full amenities. The old courtyard, supported by ancient columns, is a covered atrium. Centrally located in the heart of Palermo, near museums and opera theaters, this is an ideal location to explore the city. Enjoy the Liberty epoch decor in the common area and restaurants and modern rooms.

Contact info:
Via dei Cartari 18
Palermo, NA 90133 Italy
phone: +39 091-320-075
web: www.piazzaborsa.it

Room amenities: Direct dial telephones from room; hair dryer, complimentary toiletries; mini bar; room safe for valuables; individual thermostat; Internet connection, satellite television.

Facility amenities: Internet point in the lobby. Free Wi-Fi access. Laundry service. Conference center. Spa, massage, and aesthetic center (reservations required), Turkish bath, whirlpool, fitness center with resistance machines (free for guests). Bars, restaurants, boutiques.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights after: varies by season
You can book additional nights directly through the hotel’s online reservation system www.piazzaborsa.it. Indicate to the hotel that you are with the Road Scholar group and every effort will be made to ensure continuity of room assignment. Another option is to use online hotel consolidators such as Hotels.com or Expedia.

Check out time: 10:00 AM

Day Thirteen: Thursday, October 22 - History of Sicily continued \ Family Lunch \ Pala...
Note: Short walk in Palermo. Extended standing during site visits.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Meet in lecture hall to learn about modern Sicilian history.

Lunch: Sample Sicilian dishes at lunch at the home of a family just outside Palermo center.

Afternoon: Board coach for short ride to Palermo center. Meet expert who leads us on an exploration of important churches, chapels and museums in town, e.g. La Martorana, originally commissioned by a Greek Orthodox admiral in 1140. A brief visit to the Palatine Chapel covered with mosaics from the floor to the ceiling.

Dinner: Dinner on your own.

Lodging: Grand Hotel Piazza Borsa

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: Formerly a Mercederian monastery (who facilitated prisoner exchanges during the 16th c.) it was combined with 2 adjacent buildings in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to form a bank and stock exchange. Newly restructured and updated in 2005 it is a modern business class hotel with full amenities. The old courtyard, supported by ancient columns, is a covered atrium. Centrally located in the heart of Palermo, near museums and opera theaters, this is an ideal location to explore the city. Enjoy the Liberty epoch decor in the common area and restaurants and modern rooms.

Contact info:
Via dei Cartari 18
Palermo, NA 90133 Italy
phone: +39 091-320-075
web: www.piazzaborsa.it

Room amenities: Direct dial telephones from room; hair dryer, complimentary toiletries; mini bar; room safe for valuables; individual thermostat; Internet connection, satellite television.

Facility amenities: Internet point in the lobby. Free Wi-Fi access. Laundry service. Conference center. Spa, massage, and aesthetic center (reservations required), Turkish bath, whirlpool, fitness center with resistance machines (free for guests). Bars, restaurants, boutiques.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights after: varies by season
You can book additional nights directly through the hotel’s online reservation system www.piazzaborsa.it. Indicate to the hotel that you are with the Road Scholar group and every effort will be made to ensure continuity of room assignment. Another option is to use online hotel consolidators such as Hotels.com or Expedia.

Check out time: 10:00 AM

Day Fourteen: Friday, October 23 - Erice and Trapani
Note: The walk up to traffic-free Erice through the ancient gate is somewhat steep, similar to Taormina.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Coach to Erice. Guided visit of the ancient mountain-top city reputedly established by Elymian refugees from the fall of Troy. Eryx, the founding king, introduced the worship of Aphrodite to Sicily and we see ruins of the temple. Also noteworthy are the church and Norman walls. Coach to Trapani for a visit and lunch at the Salt Works. Used since antiquity, the sun and wind provide the ideal location to evaporate sea water through a series of large water basins. Visit the old sea mill and enjoy the type of lunch served to the salt harvesters.

Lunch: Lunch at a trattoria located in an old salt harvesting warehouse and wind mill. Taste simple but delicious food seasoned with the famous Trapani Sea Salt.

Afternoon: Return to hotel mid-afternoon.

Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.

Lodging: Grand Hotel Piazza Borsa

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: Formerly a Mercederian monastery (who facilitated prisoner exchanges during the 16th c.) it was combined with 2 adjacent buildings in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to form a bank and stock exchange. Newly restructured and updated in 2005 it is a modern business class hotel with full amenities. The old courtyard, supported by ancient columns, is a covered atrium. Centrally located in the heart of Palermo, near museums and opera theaters, this is an ideal location to explore the city. Enjoy the Liberty epoch decor in the common area and restaurants and modern rooms.

Contact info:
Via dei Cartari 18
Palermo, NA 90133 Italy
phone: +39 091-320-075
web: www.piazzaborsa.it

Room amenities: Direct dial telephones from room; hair dryer, complimentary toiletries; mini bar; room safe for valuables; individual thermostat; Internet connection, satellite television.

Facility amenities: Internet point in the lobby. Free Wi-Fi access. Laundry service. Conference center. Spa, massage, and aesthetic center (reservations required), Turkish bath, whirlpool, fitness center with resistance machines (free for guests). Bars, restaurants, boutiques.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights after: varies by season
You can book additional nights directly through the hotel’s online reservation system www.piazzaborsa.it. Indicate to the hotel that you are with the Road Scholar group and every effort will be made to ensure continuity of room assignment. Another option is to use online hotel consolidators such as Hotels.com or Expedia.

Check out time: 10:00 AM

Day Fifteen: Saturday, October 24 - Form and Function of Cathedrals \ Baroque Churche...
Note: Walks in Palermo along uneven sidewalks and pavement.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Meet in the lecture hall to learn about the architecture of religious spaces: what is the difference between a Basilica and a Cathedral?

Lunch: Lunch on your own

Afternoon: The lecturer accompanies the group and points out further examples of her talk. Explore the magnificent Baroque churches and the Abatellis Museum, where the masterpiece by Antonello da Messina's Madonna is on display.

Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.

Lodging: Grand Hotel Piazza Borsa

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner
Type: Four-Star Hotel

Description: Formerly a Mercederian monastery (who facilitated prisoner exchanges during the 16th c.) it was combined with 2 adjacent buildings in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to form a bank and stock exchange. Newly restructured and updated in 2005 it is a modern business class hotel with full amenities. The old courtyard, supported by ancient columns, is a covered atrium. Centrally located in the heart of Palermo, near museums and opera theaters, this is an ideal location to explore the city. Enjoy the Liberty epoch decor in the common area and restaurants and modern rooms.

Contact info:
Via dei Cartari 18
Palermo, NA 90133 Italy
phone: +39 091-320-075
web: www.piazzaborsa.it

Room amenities: Direct dial telephones from room; hair dryer, complimentary toiletries; mini bar; room safe for valuables; individual thermostat; Internet connection, satellite television.

Facility amenities: Internet point in the lobby. Free Wi-Fi access. Laundry service. Conference center. Spa, massage, and aesthetic center (reservations required), Turkish bath, whirlpool, fitness center with resistance machines (free for guests). Bars, restaurants, boutiques.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights after: varies by season
You can book additional nights directly through the hotel’s online reservation system www.piazzaborsa.it. Indicate to the hotel that you are with the Road Scholar group and every effort will be made to ensure continuity of room assignment. Another option is to use online hotel consolidators such as Hotels.com or Expedia.

Check out time: 10:00 AM

Day Sixteen: Sunday, October 25 - Origins of the Mafia \ Monreale's Splendid Norman...
Note: Minimal walking in Monreale, hill town with unevenly paved streets.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Morning session on the Origins of the Mafia. Board coach for short ride to Monreale, in the hills above Palermo. The interior of the massive Norman cathedral is adorned and decorated in Byzantine medieval mosaic style of the highest workmanship. Some say they rival the mosaics of S. Mark's in Venice. The town is also known for its cannoli, reputedly the best in Italy.

Lunch: Lunch at a restaurant in Monreale.

Afternoon: Some free time in Monreale. Return to Palermo in the afternoon.

Dinner: Farewell dinner at the hotel restaurant.

Lodging: Grand Hotel Piazza Borsa

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Seventeen: Monday, October 26 - Transfer to Palermo Airport
Note: Carry or roll your luggage from the coach to the check-in counter.

Breakfast: Breakfast buffet at the hotel. Continental style for participants with very early morning departures.

Morning: Coach to and Depart from Palermo airport.

Meals Included: Breakfast


Free Time Opportunities


Palermo
Explore PalermoPalermo is a city rich with history, art and culture. Many of the highlights are located within a short walk of the hotel. You may wish to take a tour of the famed Teatro Massimo, visit the Archeological Museum or stop into one of the beautiful Baroque churches in the neighborhood. Or, stroll down the Via della Libertà and take in Palermo’s Liberty-style architecture.
For additional information, visit: www.bestofsicily.com

Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.

Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
15 nights of accommodations
39 meals: 15 breakfasts, 12 lunches, 12 dinners
6 Expert-led lectures
25 Field trips

Ratings

4.8
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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