Your English speaking driver-guide will be waiting for you as you disembark in the port of Messina. Drivers will be holding a sign with your name on it, so there is no way to miss him! We highly recommend leaving the port as soon as possible to avoid traffic and better enjoy your time. You will be picked up at 8:00 am.
Book this tour, and we will head out of Palermo to learn about the hinterland area and some of the most beautiful towns and villages, not to mention some amazing stories. There are places in the countryside of Palermo sadly famous for events involving the Mafia and for having been the home of many Mafia bosses now locked up in prison.
This tour allows you to visit some of these sites and to admire them for their monuments and for their natural beauty. We will first drive from your port in the direction of the little village of Monreale, driving through wonderful countryside overlooking the “Conca D’Oro” Valley. We will visit the magnificent Duomo of Monreale, which is one of the great sights of Norman Sicily. Founded in 1172 by the Norman King William II, it flanks a monastery of Benedictine Order. The interior of the Cathedral glitters with mosaics designed by Sicilian and Byzantine artists.
We will then reach the tiny village of Ficuzza, located within a forest which is now a nature reserve. These were once the hunting grounds of the Bourbon King Ferdinand IV. Here we will visit his hunting lodge, not nearly as large, but built with the same comforts he had in his palace in Caserta, near Naples. Then we will move on to Corleone, a medieval town surrounded by emerald hills. Here you can visit the Duomo and the Prehistoric Museum. After the visit, it will be hard to believe that this town was home to many terrible Mafia bosses, such as Totò Riina, who is now serving a multiple life-term prison sentence.
If time permits, and optional upon request, we can add a visit at one of most famous wineries in this area named “Principe di Corleone”, for a wonderful wine tasting and light brunch.
You will be returning to the port at 3:30pm, on time for boarding your ship.
* Tickets, meals and extras are not included.
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