The Sunshine roads of Sicily
Motorcycle Tours Italy
22 September - 4 October
Nine days with the motorcycle and two days of relax discovering Sicily’s secrets, Trinacria, land of the sun, Italy’s largest region that has always been the center of Mediterranean civilizations.
Described by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa “this America of ancient times” Sicily is unique for the richness of its lands and for the majestic footprints of a thousand-year-old history. An itinerary that discovers big cities and uncontaminated places, searching for evidences of ancient populations that used to live there.
An experience that discovers unknown secrets where nature and culture weave together in perfect harmony. This is also an extraordinary trip to plunge into the genuine taste of land and sea that find their victory with the culinary tradition of this gem of the Mediterranean.
The tour starts and ends in Rome which allows easy planning to extend your visit to this fabulous city should you want to.
Enrico Grassi, Tour Leader and Founder of Hear the Road and Giovanni Lamonica, profound connoisseur of the Island of the Sun, have spent many hours discovering the riding routes and the extraordinary hospitality to leave you with a Holiday Adventure you will always remember with a smile.
|The Sunshine Roads of Sicily in a glance|
Where We Ride – What We See – What We Hear
Day 1 “Welcome to Rome!”
A private car will transfer you from the airport to the hotel where you will find your Hear The Road hosts Enrico and Giovanni, waiting to give you a warm Italian welcome. Late morning/early afternoon arrival is recommended.
After you’ve put your luggage in the room and take a good refreshing shower, we convene in the bar of the hotel for a “Meet and Greet” with your tour colleagues. Enrico gives you a general briefing of the tour and will be very glad to answer to all your questions.
Finally we are ready to go to pick up the bikes and bring them to the hotel garage. Then we go all together to taste the “Welcome Dinner”, where you’ll learn more about what to expect for the next exciting days.
Overnight is in Rome.
Highlights: Meet your bike, Welcome Dinner.
Day 2 – Rome to Naples – (354 km / 220 miles) > Overnight ferry to Palermo
In the morning, we will leave Rome with our motorcycles heading south towards Naples, where we will take the ferry to Palermo.
Our itinerary will follow the Latium coastal road, passing through Anzio, well known for the Second World War landing, proceeding along the littoral until Sperlonga, where we will take the spectacular SS82 leading us to the famous Montecassino Abbey, where we will stop for a visit. After its complete destruction in 1944 during the Second World War, the abbey has been accurately rebuilt following the original project.
After the visit, we will jump back on our bikes to reach Naples, where the ferryboat to Sicily is waiting for us!
Overnight on the ferry to Palermo
Highlights: Anzio, Montecassino Abbey
Day 3 – Palermo – Bagheria – Palermo (79 km / 49 miles)
A very tasty surprise is waiting for us upon arrival: breakfast in the elegant Bar Pasticceria Sampolo in the city center of Palermo! After tasting the famous “cannoli” (a typical Sicilian rolled cake filled with ricotta cheese and candied fruit), we will climb the Monte Pellegrino, hosting Santa Rosalia Sanctuary, with a breathtaking view over the city and the Mondello Bay, where we will soon face many hairpin bends.
After a short stop by the small harbor, we will drive through the town towards the near Bagheria, called “Città delle Ville” (city of villas). Here we will visit the Guttuso Museum hosted in the famous Villa Cattolica. At the end of the visit, we will stop for lunch in the historic trattoria Buttitta.
Back on our motorcycles, we will head towards Palermo, and we will have a brief detour along the way in the incredible harbor of Porticello and the amazing promontory of Capo Zafferano. We will then check in at the hotel, and have a free afternoon to visit this beautiful city, of the historical center and some of the principal monuments.
Overnight in Palermo
Highlights: Breakfast in Palermo, Santa Rosaria Sanctuary , Gattuso Museum, Cape Zafferano, Palermo
Day 4 – Palermo to San Vito Lo Capo (162 km / 100 miles)
A beautiful day is waiting for us, driving towards Trapani and its surroundings. We will overtake Monreale, where a stop to visit its spectacular Duomo (cathedral) is mandatory.
Quick stop in Montelepre to visit the grave of Salvatore Giuliano, the guerrilla-criminal. We will proceed on skimming Alcamo and we will reach one of the most fascinating places all over Sicily: Segesta. With a tour guide, we will here visit the archeological park with its famous temple and its spectacular amphitheater.
We will continue in direction of Castellammare del Golfo, until the ancient hamlet of Scopello, recently reevaluated thanks to the proximity of the Riserva Naturale dello Zingaro. We cannot miss a visit to the Tonnara, one of the most important and ancient in Sicily; the Tonnara was built around XIII century and considerably enlarged by Sanclemente family over XV and XVI centuries.
Overnight in San Vito Lo Capo.
Highlights: Monreale, Montelepre, Segesta, Scopello
Day 5 – Free day in San Vito Lo Capo
Day entirely devoted to laziness, we could even only stay in the fantastic caribbean beach that overlooks the landscape!!! The low houses of the village are covered by vines, and in the background you can admire a brilliant blue stain…it is so difficult to remain indifferent! Famous as few, San Vito Lo Capo beach is definitely a disarming beauty…an absolute delight!
Possibility of boat trip to the Riserva Naturale dello Zingaro, 7 kilometers of uncontaminated nature where birds of prey live and nest, for those who love to plunge into a timeless nature, where past and present blend harmoniously, this is something you cannot miss. The ancient Greeks and the Romans used to call it “Cetaria” for the abundance of the tuna fishes in its waters.
It is not easy to describe the beauty of this place with a few words: the small bays paved by white pebbles, the sea that gets unexpected shapes of green and blue, the sharp cliffs between the small beaches, the Mediterranean scrub that seems to dive into the sea, and the old farmhouses built on the rock follow one another mixing up with perfumes and colors, showing all their charm.
Dinner is at restaurant Ghibli, masters of the famous couscous, typical local course.
Overnight in San Vito Lo Capo.
Highlights: It’s your free day…you can do what you want!
Day 6 – San Vito Lo Capo to Menfi (180 km / 112 miles)
Charged by such beauty, we resume our journey. Our first stop will be in one of the pearls of Sicily: the town of Erice. Set in a panoramic position, Erice preserves untouched its medieval center, perfectly integrated with the mountain morphology and harmoniously blended with the surrounding nature.
After a stop for tasting the delicious almond cakes at Convento bakery, we proceed on heading south towards Marsala, famous for the “sbarco dei mille” (literally the “landing of the thousands”) in 1860 and for its high-level wine production.
Carrying on onto our itinerary, we will drift to the inland towards Salemi, Gibellina Nuova, city-museum invented to soothe the desolation post-earthquake, until the ruins of Gibellina Vecchia, destroyed by the earthquake during the night between 14th and 15th January 1968, covered by a flow of cement and lime. A few kilometers afterwards the road ends in a ghost town, the ruins of Poggioreale, the jewel of Belice area, an intimate, emotional, living place.
Overnight in Menfi.
Highlights: Erice, Marsala, Gibellina, Poggioreale
Day 7 – Menfi to Agrigento (226 km / 140 miles)
We resume our trip on the empty SP79 towards Sciacca, riding then inland and following a triangle of roads among the evocative villages of Corleone, Prizzi (balcony-village par excellence) and Palazzo Adriano, real open air movie location of “Nuovo cinema Paradiso” of Giuseppe Tornatore, winner of the Oscar prize in 1990.
The arrival, after about 200 km of secondary roads with low traffic, sometimes not in good condition but definitely fascinating, will be in Agrigento. Few words to spend: one of the most visited places in Sicily and Italy. In the afternoon, we will enjoy a guided tour to the Temples Valley, UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1997. The archaeological route is a journey through time that will lead us to the discovery of the remains of the glorious civilizations of the past.
Overnight in Agrigento.
Highlights: Temples Valley in Agrigento
Day 8 – Agrigento to Ragusa (223 km / 138 miles)
We begin the day by driving along the coastline. Near Licata, we will bend inward towards Naro, a beautiful example of Sicilian Baroque style with its medieval hamlet around the castle on an isolated hill.
The most important stop of the day is of course the splendid Villa Romana del Casale in Piazza Armerina, where we will have a guided tour of the archaeological park.
We will then proceed on to Caltagirone. With its land rich in clay, Caltagirone is worldwide known for the production of handmade pottery that still involves hundreds of artisans. Do not miss a walk through the streets of the town animated by many small shops with typical products: tiles, chandeliers, whistles, plates, jars, vases. Something that deserves a special attention is the spectacular staircase: 142 steps that connect the upper town to the lower town. The staircase was built in ‘600 and in 1954, the rises of each step were coated with majolica tiles, with sparkling geometric patterns.
Overnight in Ragusa.
Highlights: Naro, Villa Romana del Casale, Caltagirone.
Day 9 – Ragusa to Taormina (282 km / 175 miles)
Ready to enjoy another day and to admire Sicilian beauties! We will dedicate our attention to two within the most picturesque towns of Ragusa province and all Sicily: Scicli, our favorite, and Modica. Proceeding on eastwards, we encounter Ispica, the picturesque small marina of Marzamemi, until reaching Noto, small jewel of the baroque style perched on an upland that dominates the Asinaro valley, covered with citrus fruits.
Back on our motorcycles, we will reach Siracusa, one of the largest metropolis of the ancient world, and the biggest Greek town. In its most ancient heart, the archeological area of the Neapolis, we find the evocative Greek Theatre and the Dionisio’s Ear, an artificial hole obtained by the stone extraction. Do not miss a stroll among the characteristic alleys of the town of Ortigia, searching for the right place where to enjoy a very tasty ice cream. Back on our seats, we will pass the city of Catania and will take the unique highway path on the Island’s travel itinerary to reach Taormina for the end of the day: a terrace over the clear blue sea.
Overnight in Taormina.
Highlights: Scicli, Modica, Marzameni, Noto, Siracusa
Day 10 – Free day in Taormina
A relaxing day between sea and culture in Taormina. Thanks to its location, to the neighboring attractions and the nearby beaches, Taormina is a famous destination for tourists coming from every part the world. The most famous monument of the town is the Greek Theatre, from where you can enjoy a stunning view over the surrounding region, and appreciate the historical environment.
The Theatre was built in III century B.C. from the Greek population in a spectacular position that was a natural set for their musical or dramatic representations. The structure was afterwards enlarged and restored from the Romans that used it for gladiatorial games and battleships. The picturesque historical center is very evocative and will invite you to a nice walk among the myriad of alleys, and in the characteristic restaurants and cafes, you could have a rest and taste a typical product.
Overnight in Taormina.
Highlights: It’s your second free day…enjoy your time in Taormina by your own.
Day 11 – Taormina to Catania (126 km / 78 miles)
Last day on the Island, our trip is almost finished. We will start driving on the spectacular roads that lead to the departure point for excursions to the crater of the highest active volcano in Europe (3.340 m), Etna, which dominates the landscape, the mountain where fire, water and light meet, blend and weave together to offer a unique show.
Nature offers pure uncontaminated landscapes and incredibly spectacular roads within the Etna Park, the first park established in Sicily, in 1987. We will drive eastwards along the giant volcano, on very panoramic roads. After the excursion, we will head towards Catania, and if we have enough time, we will visit its historical center, where the baroque style has been declared UNESCO Heritage.
Overnight on the ferry to Naples
Highlights: Mount Etna (Volcano), Catania
Day 12 – Naples to Rome (227 km / 141 miles)
Our journey is about to end. Driving on highway and backroads roads, we will reach Rome, where we will give back the motorcycles. A quick shower and then we will all go together out for dinner to celebrate this wonderful Italian experience.
Overnight in Rome.
Highlights: Last backroads to Rome – Farewell Dinner
Day 13: Departure day
Time to say, “Arrivederci” to our new friends, collect the souvenirs and cameras and pack the bags. After breakfast, guests will be transferred to the airport.
Art / History
Food / Wine
|Rider in Shared Room||Rider in Single Room||Couple|
Motorcycle Class 1
BMW G650 GS – BMW F700 GS – BMW F800 R
MOTO GUZZI V7
|€ 5.100||€ 5.790||€ 8.640|
Motorcycle Class 2
BMW F800 GS – BMW F800 GT - DUCATI SCRAMBLER
|€ 5.270||€ 5.960||€ 8.810|
Motorcycle Class 3
BMW R1200GS – BMW NINET – BMW R1200R
BMW R1200 RS – DUCATI HYPERSTRADA
|€ 5.400||€ 6.090||€ 8.940|
Motorcycle Class 4
BMW S1000 XR – BMW R1200 RT - BMW R1200 GS ADV
|€ 5.580||€ 6.270||€ 9.120|
Motorcycle Class 5
BMW S1000 R – DUCATI MONSTER 1200
DUCATI MULTISTRADA - DUCATI DIAVEL
|€ 5.560||€ 6.350||€ 9.200|
Motorcycle Class 6
BMW K1600 GLT
|€ 5.790||€ 6.480||€ 9.330|
||€ 4.150||€ 4.830||€ 7.690|
*Rented Motorcycle Subject to Availability
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Creation of the tour: Associazione Culturale Hear The Road.
Organization and marketing: Hear The Road srl.