Post Conference Tour: Greek Sites in Sicily

Greek Sites in Sicily Tour: Thursday July 29 – Saturday July 31, 2021 (3 days, 2 nights)

This tour is designed to minimize travel and time in the bus in respect of COVID protocols. We cannot yet confirm that the tour will be possible, however. Participants will not be billed until the tour can be confirmed. Please do not make fixed travel arrangements based on the itinerary until it is confirmed.

Thursday, July 29

We will depart Siracusa by private coach for a morning visit to the site of ancient city of Eloro (Helorus), mentioned by Thucydides and known as a colony of Syracuse.  The ruins are rather sparse, but the seaside setting is spectacular and there is a secluded sandy beach nearby.  More spectacular ruins can be found nearby at the Villa Romana di Tellaro where expansive Roman mosaics depicting scenes from Homer and Greek mythology were found by accident in 1971.

After coffee at the Villa, we will head to Akrai – the ancient summer residence of wealthy Syracusans, founded in the 7th century BCE.  The city was important enough to play an important role in the Peloponnesian war. Its site is expansive and includes a well-preserved theater, as well as ancient rock carvings taken to be the site of a cult of the Magna Mater. The adjacent city of Palazzolo Acreide is also a nice place for lunch

An afternoon drive deeper into the mountains will bring us to our farmhouse lodging near Enna – site of Hades’ mythical abduction of Perseophone – for an evening meal and overnight.

Friday, July 30

In the morning, we will visit the complex site of Morgantina, another ancient city controlled by Syracuse, but one settled by a mix of Greek and indigenous peoples.  The site is expansive and complex, and accompanied by the excellent Archaeological Museum of Aidone, which will be our next stop on the tour.

After lunch we will make our way to the Villa Romana del Casale near Piazza Armerina, one of the most extensive and best-preserved collections of Roman mosaics in the world.  The images include scenes from mythology, Greek and Roman games, hunting, and even ironic and erotic scenes.  From there, we’ll head to Agrigento to check-in to our hotel and take a break before viewing the floodlit temples at night and enjoying an elegant group dinner.

Saturday, July 31

Our day at Agrigento will begin with the Temple of Hera Lacinia and continue downhill to the temples of Concord, Heracles, and Olympian Zeus, finishing up at the temple of Castor and Pollux. After a break for lunch, we will visit Agrigento’s magnificent museum, featuring a 5th century marble ephebe and a seven meter-tall reconstructed Telamon from the Temple of Olympian Zeus. 

We will finish the tour in Catania with stops at the airport and downtown (Piazza Borsellino), around 5PM.

Tour Price: 650 euro per person/double occupancy. Single supplement 70 euro. Package includes entry tickets to all sites, 2 nights deluxe hotel with breakfast, 2 evening meals, and transportation by private bus. Departure depends on a minimum number of participants and covid restrictions. To reserve your place, contact Susi Kimbell directly by email: skimbell@exedramc.com