Syracuse
Day Trips

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Our most recommended Syracuse Day Trips

From Taormina: Full-Day Guided Tour of Syracuse

1. From Taormina: Full-Day Guided Tour of Syracuse

For those traveling to Sicily, Syracuse is not to be missed. Once the most important city in Magna Graecia, it defeated the mighty Athens in 413 and was home to many a great Greek, including the inimitable Archimedes. At the height of its economic, political, and military power, the city had a population of 300,000 and, according to Cicero, was "the greatest Greek city and the most beautiful of them all.” Join a full-day guided bus tour of this great city, which includes a visit to its archaeological sites as well as the island of Ortygia. First, visit the archaeological site, which is situated in the northwest of the town and is home to a staggering number of well-preserved Greek and Roman remains. The main attraction is undoubtedly the Greek theater, which dates back at least until the 5th Century BC. Its cavea is amongst the largest ever built, its 59 rows could accommodate up to 15,000 spectators. Just over the ridge from the theater, you will see the old stone quarries where today there grows a fragrant lemon orchard. Also, visit the famous Ear of Dionysius, a 20m-high, slender pointed arch cut into the rock face about 65m deep. The rock was once used by Dionysius the Tyrant as a prison for his bitterest enemies. After stopping by the Roman amphitheater, continue on to the Archaeological Museum, which contains a great collection of exhibits from all over the Syracuse area. Spend the second half of your day wandering around the beautiful island of Ortygia. It may be a small island, but it's packed with over 2,500 years of history. Architectural styles vary widely, encompassing Greek and Roman remains, Medieval Norman buildings, and a great deal of understated Baroque visible in the main cathedral. In the afternoon, take a break to relax in one of the island's many restaurants, trattorias or bars, as you take in the sights of the lagoon.

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Syracuse, Ortygia and Noto Full-Day Tour from Catania

2. Syracuse, Ortygia and Noto Full-Day Tour from Catania

Learn the ancient history of Sicily on a full-day sightseeing tour that takes in the archaeological park of Neapolis, home to the majority of classical monuments of Greek and Roman Syracuse. Following a pick-up from your accommodation in Catania, transfer to the ruins of Syracuse, now listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. During a guided walk you will discover many old Roman streets, as well as monuments such as the Greek Theatre, whose cavea is one of the largest ever built by the ancient Greeks. Near the Greek Theatre, you will see the latomie, including the limestone cave known as the “Ear of Dyonisius,” as well as the Christian Church of San Nicolò ai Cordari. Admire the Amphitheatre of the Roman imperial age, and more. Then, continue to Ortygia Island to experience the historic heart of Syracuse. Located at the park’s eastern end, and separated by a narrow channel, Ortygia is filled with Greek temples, Christian churches, and Arabian streets. Visit the Arethusa fountain and Piazza del Duomo, where the baroque palaces, such as Beneventano del Bosco Palace and Senate Palace are among the most beautiful in Sicily. After lunch (own expense), go to the small town of Noto, noted for its unique style of Sicilian Baroque architecture, and declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2002. Wander the open air museum and beautiful Corso Vittorio Emanuele to admire the many palaces and churches that, grouped together, are known as the “Stone Garden.”

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From Catania: Syracuse and Noto Culture and History Tour

3. From Catania: Syracuse and Noto Culture and History Tour

Discover two of the most beautiful cities in Sicily on this guided history and culture tour of Syracuse and Noto. Syracuse is a UNESCO World Heritage Site while Noto is considered the most beautiful city of Sicilian Baroque. See Neapolis Archaeological Park, Ortigia, and more. Meet your guides who will lead to the Archaeological Park of Neapolis, an area rich in archaeological finds belonging to several periods of Syracusan history. Later, continue on the island of Ortigia, the historic center of Syracuse. Walk through alleys that are over 2000 years old and full of history. See the spectacular cathedral. Then, head to the historic center of Noto that's called the stone garden due to the architectural beauty of its palaces. See why this place is considered to have some of the most beautiful examples of Sicilian Baroque. After experiencing Syracuse and Noto, get transferred back to your pickup location.

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Catania: Siracuse, Noto, and Ortigia Tour

4. Catania: Siracuse, Noto, and Ortigia Tour

After meeting with your guide at the tour starting point in Catania, you will begin your tour with a visit to Noto, a town declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO which is also considered the Sicilian capital of Baroque. Following that, continue on to Ortigia, which is characterized by a narrow road that will lead you to the discovery of the Temple of Apollo, the Cathedral, and the Fonte Aretusa. At lunchtime, enjoy some free time to eat and stroll around. In the afternoon, the tour continues with a visit to the Archaeological Park of Neapolis, which is characterized by its Greek and Roman monuments (such as a Greek Theater and Roman Amphitheater). It will be there that you can also discover fantastic caves, which include the Ear of Dionysius. At the conclusion of your Sicilian day out, you will return to your tour's starting point in Catania.

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Syracuse: Town Museum and Lunch

5. Syracuse: Town Museum and Lunch

Journey in time as you discover Buscemi and Palazzolo Acreide. Visit several house-museums and explore ancient trades, traditions and arts. Enjoy a typical Sicilian lunch at the home of a local family. Take a long walk and stop in one of the oldest pastry shops in town. Drive through the narrow streets of the typical Sicilian rural landscape, aboard a comfortable minivan, reaching Buscemi, the "museum city". Discover ancient trades, traditions and arts and through an ethno-anthropological route. Visit several house-museums dedicated to the craft professions of the time: the farmer's house, the mill, the blacksmith's shop, carpentry and many other typical trades of the time. Feel the past thanks to the passion of the citizens who, by donating precious mementos and historical finds, have contributed to maintaining these small houses of Buscemi exactly as they were when inhabited by their ancestors. Head towards Palazzolo Acreide, a village of Greek origins and built in the Baroque style, where you will visit the Greek Theatre and two churches that are now UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Reach the house of a family from Palazzolo Acreide who will welcome you to enjoy a typical Sicilian lunch together. Take a long stroll and stop in one of the oldest pastry shops in Noto.

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From Catania: Syracuse, Ortygia, and Noto Tour

6. From Catania: Syracuse, Ortygia, and Noto Tour

Enjoy three beautiful places in Sicily with this full-day tour from Catania. Listen to historical facts and facinating anecdotes with your audio guide as you stop at the Neapolis Archaeological Park, Ortygia, and Noto.  Meet your driver in Duomo square in the center of Catania and sit back and relax in the comfortable van on the drive to the Neapolis Archaeological Park in Syracuse. Purchase tickets to the park to admire the magnificent Greek theater, Roman Amphitheater, and stone quarries. Continue to the ancient fortified island of Ortygia. Spend some time wandering the streets to discover the mythical Fountain of Arethusa, Piazza Duomo, the fortress walls, and stunning Baroque churches and palaces. Finally, drive to the town of Noto where you can discover the Sicilian capital of Baroque architecture. Have some free time to see sights like the Fountain of Hercules, and noble palaces like Palazzo Astuto and Palazzo Trigona Cannicarao. Return to the meeting point in Catania.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Syracuse

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What people are saying about Syracuse

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 95 reviews

Pick up and return on time. Corona-proof in these times because 2 mini-vans for 10 people in total, wearing masks inside all the time. Professional and friendly guides. Tour partly guided, partly with free time, enough time for questions and lunch.

It was great to see a few different places. Nando was friendly and informative. It’s quiet this year so we ended up having a private tour. I recommend it!

Not is beautiful, well worth a visit to slowly stroll the streets and enjoy the atmosphere. The ruins are magnificent.

It was a great trip. You get to see a lot in a day. Salvo was a great guide.

Guide very knowledgeable, flexible in schedule and helpful.