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Taormina And Etna With The Gold Of The Gods

Sicily is known for sights and flavors, experience them all with this wonderful chance to indulge in visiting the spectacular Taormina, the imposing Mt. Etna and then the charming quaintness of a local farm to partake in the tastes of Italy.

From Messina you will begin your exciting day and travel in comfort towards Taormina, approximately 1-hour away. Taormina's genesis and early history began with the Greeks who founded and named the town in 358 B.C. The climate is a dream, its position, perfect panoramas, monuments and luxurious flora and fauna render Taormina a location admired by all who visit it. The city lies on a terrace, with a view of the ancient Amphitheater against a backdrop of citrus groves with Mount Etna engulfed in the glory of the Ionian Sea beyond.

Once in Taormina, you will be guided for just over 1-hour with your local, knowledgeable and friendly guide where you will discover some of the treasures this medieval village keeps. Known as the Pearl of the Ionian Sea, view the ancient churches, palaces, unique squares with astonishing views, architecture, cafes and exclusive boutiques.

From here, continue to Mt. Etna where you will stop for a short visit at 1900m high. This is Europe's highest volcano and one of the most active in the world. Towering above the city of Catania on the island of Sicily, it has been growing for about 500,000 years and is amid a series of eruptions that began in 2001. It has experienced a variety of eruption styles, including violent explosions and voluminous lava flows. More than 25% of Sicily's population lives on Etna's slopes, and it is the main source of income for the island, both from agriculture (due to its rich volcanic soil) and tourism.

Leave Etna behind and begin to make your way back to Messina and make your last stop of the day at a local farm to discover what is known as the "Gold of the Gods", the local honey. The quaint, local village of Zafferana Etnea lies at the base of the volcano. At approximately 500m above sea level, the commune provides a cooler climate during the oppressive heat of summer. Nestled between mountain and sea, the green hills rise to the heights of Mt. Etna but is minutes to the Ionian Sea. Here you will indulge in a delicious tasting of local products to savor the true flavor of Sicily. Enjoy olive oil, bread, dried tomatoes, wine and honey that will give you a reason to never forget this destination.

Starting At
 
Tour Type
Group
 
Group Size
Standard
 
Activity Type(s)
Cultural, Active, Scenic
 
Tour Duration
7 Hours
 
Activity Level
Moderate
 
Tour Leaves From
Cruise Ship Pier
 
Food/Beverage Provided
Snacks, Beverages
 
Special Instructions
We recommend wearing comfortable, lightweight clothing and comfortable walking shoes. We also suggest a windproof jacket, hat, scarf, sunscreen and sunglasses.
 
Restrictions
Guests must be able to get in and out of transportation and walk on even and uneven surfaces. Guests must be of legal drinking age to consume alcohol. This tour is not wheelchair accessible.
Location Overview
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About Shore Excursions Group
ABOUT US
Shore Excursions Group was created with one goal in mind: to provide exceptional travel experiences to cruise passengers in the ports they visit around the world. To accomplish this, we have compiled an exceptional array of tours delivered by local experts with decades of experience serving travelers and delivering excellent tours. Our owners and management team are comprised of seasoned travel industry executives who leverage their considerable experience to deliver memories of a lifetime.

We are experts in providing exceptional shore excursions. We understand that in today's fast paced world, vacations have become an increasingly important way to relax, reconnect with family and friends, and experience new and interesting places. With this in mind, we provide the highest quality tours by performing extensive research, and detailed reviews. While other companies also offer excursions, we strongly believe our expertise and approach set us apart. The large cruise lines sell shore excursions - typically in very large groups visiting high traffic sites. We focus on smaller groups visiting more interesting and authentic locations using more personalized local operators. While the cruise lines are experts in delivering cruises, we are experts in delivering shore excursions.

Our Approach
We believe quality service is not only highly valued by customers, but ultimately leads to better experiences and higher satisfaction. Unlike the cruise lines and other tour companies that rely almost entirely on websites, we encourage customers to call us. We want to invest our time answering your questions, providing input, and selecting the excursions that best meet your needs.

Our Tours
Our goal is to provide customers a wide array of exciting, appealing, and enriching tours. For those customers who prefer to travel in smaller groups with more personalized service, we offer a wide variety of small group tours around the world. These tours generally range in size from 2-12 people compared to larger tours which can number up to 50 people. While exploring the destinations and ports on this website, feel free to search for these "Small Group Tours". For those customers interested in private tours, we offer many outstanding excursions that allow you to travel with your party alone and, in many cases, to fully customize your tour. Search for "Private Tours" if you are interested in this experience. Our "Scenic" tours provide up close and personal access to some of the most spectacular natural environments on Earth from majestic glaciers in Alaska to spectacular reefs in the Caribbean. Our "Cultural" tours allow customers to experience local customs, entertainment and culinary delights ranging from tribal dances in Alaska to an outstanding local meal in Santorini, Greece. Our "Active" tours offer a multitude of exciting and adventurous ways to experience our destinations. Our customers can kayak the turquoise waters of the Caribbean, hike to a spectacular waterfall in Hawaii, or bicycle through quaint villages in France. Our "City" tours allow travelers to see the highlights of great cities around the world with unique insights provided by our expert tour guides.

Our People
In our experience, exceptional travel experiences are almost always delivered by exceptional people. With that in mind, we utilize a comprehensive approach to select and employ the leading tour guides and tour providers around the globe. We hold our people to very high standards which we measure by our comprehensive Quality Control process and, most importantly, by our customer feedback, which we will actively seek from each of our customers.

Our Owners
Shore Excursions Group is owned by seasoned travel executives possessing extensive experience across many sectors within the travel industry.

Bradford J. Miller
Mr. Miller is the former Executive Vice President and Chief Development Officer for Abercrombie & Kent, the World's leading luxury travel company. In that role, Mr. Miller was responsible for contributing to Abercrombie & Kent's international growth through the development and acquisition of tour products and travel experiences around the world with a specific focus on cruising and land based experiences. Prior to joining Abercrombie & Kent, Mr. Miller held a variety of executive positions with Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruises for more than a decade. These positions included Vice President of Guest Sales & Service, Vice President of Brand Development, and Vice President of Onboard Revenue (which included shore excursions). Mr. Miller also led Celebrity Expeditions, a collection of outstanding and unique tours around the World.

Michael Bonner
Mr. Bonner has over a decade of experience working in the cruise industry in a variety of roles for both Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. and Viking River Cruises. Most recently, Mr. Bonner was the Chief Operating Officer for The Scholar Ship, a Royal Caribbean program aimed at providing college students onboard educational programs in conjunction with enriching shore excursions around the world. Mr. Bonner also helped co-manage Viking River Cruises U.S. Operations, and he ran the corporate, strategic, and deployment planning functions at Royal Caribbean. While at Royal Caribbean, Mr. Bonner was responsible for forming Royal Celebrity Tours, Royal Caribbean's land-based tour operation in Alaska, which takes cruise passengers on multiple day tours through the interior of Alaska either before or after their cruises. Prior to working at Royal Caribbean, Mr. Bonner was a consultant for Booz Allen & Hamilton.

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Prices are per-person based on double occupancy, unless otherwise noted.