Elegant Taormina and The Eastern Coast

Situated high above the Ionian Sea on Sicily’s eastern coast, the ancient city of Taormina is a picturesque place that has inspired artists, writers, and tourists for centuries. But the breathtaking view of the sea isn’t the only thing to love about this magical city. The town has been called the “greatest work of art and nature,” according to Goethe, and with its Greek colonial ruins, mild climate, and snow-capped Mount Etna, it’s not hard to see why. Discover this paradise in this Italian culinary vacation.


Latest Review

We gave this trip 5 stars
Evann & Linda
Florida
Trip taken April 2018
We absolutely loved our cooking tour experience. It was a perfect balance of cooking and touring mixed with just enough free time. Paolo was truly amazing and allowed as much customization as we would like. This allowed us to truly enjoy the visit and vacation. The cooking lessons themselves were so diverse in location, (although not as much in the actual food we cooked, but I know the Sicilians cook what is in season). The time each day spent was absolutely perfect and we can’t wait to go back!

Trip Details

Explore Sicilian cooking in 3 unique Italian cooking classes.

  • The first class will be in Catania, including a visit to the amazing fish market.
  • The second will be on Mount Etna
  • The third will be in Taormina at the Villa Britannia.

In all your cooking classes, you’ll discover the wonderful flavors and traditions of Italian and Sicilian cooking.


We Can Help Plan It All

Flights, additional nights and tours, Transportation, and Much More

We might not be able to pack for you, but there are tons of things we can help with to make your vacation that much better.

Contact us for more information, or you can indicate your interest during check out and we will follow up directly!

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4 or 6 Nights Starting At $2,400

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Itinerary

Day One

  • Meet your driver at Catania airport and transfer to Taormina.
  • Check-in to the 4-star Hotel Villa Diodoro.
  • Time on your own to explore the historical center of Taormina.
  • Dinner at a local restaurant (drinks not included) and overnight.

Day Two

  • Following breakfast, head to Catania for a visit of the fish market and your first cooking lesson with Loredana.
  • Lunch to follow based on your efforts.
  • In the afternoon, enjoy a half-day Godfather tour, which includes a visit to the small village of Savoca, the main location for the Godfather movie. You will also see Bar Vitelli, where Michael (Al Pacino) lived in Sicily, as well as the amazing 17th-century Villa “deli Schivai,” otherwise known as the Corleone house.
  • Return to Taormina for dinner on your own and overnight.

Day Three

  • Breakfast
  • Experience a full day excursion to Siracusa, where you will see the historical city center Ortigia and the beautiful city’s most known sites.
  • Return to Taormina for dinner on your own and overnight.

Day Four

  • Breakfast.
  • Experience a full-day visit to the highest active volcano in Europe, Mount Etna.
  • Transfer to a special wine estate “Barone di Villagrande” near Milo. This picture-perfect family-owned estate dates back to 1727 and produces first-rate wines. Explore the winery and cellar as well, and of course enjoy a tasting of wines accompanied by a light lunch.
  • Return to the hotel in the afternoon for some free time in Taormina.
  • Dinner on your own.
  • Overnight.

Day Five

  • Following breakfast, depart for Castiglione di Sicilia, a village under Mount Etna.
  • In the late morning, for your second cooking class, Chef Mariolina will help you prepare a traditional Sicilian lunch, which you’ll then enjoy in the amazing rooms of the estate il Tanaceto.
  • Return to Taormina for dinner on your own and overnight.

Day Six

  • After breakfast, your third hands-on cooking class, this time at the Villa Britannia with their chef.
  • Lunch to follow.
  • Private transfer service back to the hotel for some time on your own to use the hotel’s panoramic pool or the private beach.
  • Farewell dinner in a local restaurant.
  • Overnight.

Day Seven

  • After breakfast, transfer to Catania airport.

Day One

  • Meet your driver at Catania airport and transfer to Taormina.
  • Check-in to the 4-star Hotel Villa Diodoro.
  • Time on your own to explore the historical center of Taormina.
  • Dinner at a local restaurant (drinks not included) and overnight.

Day Two

  • Following breakfast, head to Catania for a visit of the fish market and your first cooking lesson with Loredana.
  • Lunch to follow based on your efforts.
  • In the afternoon, enjoy a half-day Godfather tour, which includes a visit to the small village of Savoca, the main location for the Godfather movie. You will also see Bar Vitelli, where Michael (Al Pacino) lived in Sicily, as well as the amazing 17th-century Villa “deli Schivai,” otherwise known as the Corleone house.
  • Return to Taormina for dinner on your own and overnight.

Day Three

  • Breakfast
  • Experience a full day excursion to Siracusa, where you will see the historical city center Ortigia and the beautiful city’s most known sites.
  • Return to Taormina for dinner on your own and overnight.

Day Four

  • Breakfast.
  • Experience a full-day visit to the highest active volcano in Europe, Mount Etna.
  • Transfer to a special wine estate “Barone di Villagrande” near Milo. This picture-perfect family-owned estate dates back to 1727 and produces first-rate wines. Explore the winery and cellar as well, and of course enjoy a tasting of wines accompanied by a light lunch.
  • Return to the hotel in the afternoon for some free time in Taormina.
  • Dinner on your own.
  • Overnight.

Day Five

  • After breakfast, transfer to Catania airport.

Trip Details

Included in the 6-Night Trip

Accommodations

6 nights accommodation in classic room at 4* Hotel Villa Diodoro (or similar)

Food & Beverages

  • Daily breakfast
  • 4 lunches (wine included)
  • 2 dinners (wine not included)

Classes & Instructors

Explore Sicilian cooking in 3 unique Italian cooking classes.

  • The first class will be in Catania, including a visit to the amazing fish market.
  • The second will be on Mount Etna
  • The third will be in Taormina at the Villa Britannia.

In all your cooking classes, you’ll discover the wonderful flavors and traditions of Italian and Sicilian cooking.

Excursions

  • Half-day ‘Godfather Tour’ to see the village of Savoca, where the Godfather movie was filmed.
  • Visit of Catania, including the fish market
  • Excursion to Siracusa
  • Visit of Mount Etna including winery visit and tasting

Transfer Details

  • Group arrival and departure transfers from/to Catania airport.  (Late arrivals, early departures, or transfers separate from the group may incur an additional fee.)

Not Included

  • Beverages with dinners

Included in the 4-Night Trip

Accommodations

4 nights accommodation n classic room at 4* Hotel Villa Diodoro (or similar)

Food & Beverages

  • Daily breakfast
  • 2 lunches (wine included)
  • 1 dinner (wine not included)

Classes & Instructors

Explore Sicilian cooking in a unique Italian cooking class in Catania, including a visit to the amazing fish market. You’ll discover the wonderful flavors and traditions of Italian and Sicilian cooking.

Excursions

  • Half-day ‘Godfather Tour’ to see the village of Savoca, where the Godfather movie was filmed.
  • Visit of Catania, including the fish market and city center
  • Excursion to Siracusa
  • Visit of Mount Etna including winery visit and tasting

Transfer Details

  • Group arrival and departure transfers from/to Catania airport.  (Late arrivals, early departures, or transfers separate from the group may incur an additional fee.)

Not Included

  • Beverages with dinners

Accommodation Information

The elegant Hotel Villa Diodoro is named after the Greek historian Diodoro Siculo, who attracted travelers to the city of Taormina by describing it as a place of beauty, sun, art and culture. Today the hotel features 102 spacious rooms that offer amazing views of the surrounding area — both the bay of Naxos and Mount Etna — as well as modern amenities. Guests can use both the pool on the terrace or enjoy free access to a private beach.

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Pricing & Tour Dates

Looking for tour date information?


Pricing:

6-night Program
US$3600 per person based on double occupancy
  • Add US$500 for single occupancy (use of a double room by 1 person)
  • Subtract US$500 per person when booking 4 or more people
  • Add US$600 per person to upgrade to Junior suite

30% deposit due to confirm booking.
Balance payment due 60 days prior to tour start date. Questions? Please contact us!


Tour Dates

Available the following weeks March through November. Other months also available on request, please inquire. (Please note that November through March is low season and some stores/restaurants will be closed.)

2019
March 3-9
March 10-16
March 17-23
March 24-30
March 31-April 6
April 7-13
April 14-20
April 21-27
April 28-May 4
May 5-11
May 12-18
May 19-25
May 26-June 1
June 2-8
June 9-15
June 16-22
June 23-29
June 30-July 6
July 7-13
July 14-20
July 21-27
July 28-August 3
August 4-10
August 11-17
August 18-24
August 25-31
September 1-7
September 8-14
September 15-21
September 22-28
September 29-October 5
October 6-12
October 13-19
October 20-26
October 27-November 2
November 3-9
November 10-16
November 17-23
November 24-30

Looking for tour date information?


Year-Round Pricing:

4-night Program
US$2800 per person based on double occupancy
  • Subtract US$250 per person when booking 4 or more people

30% deposit due to confirm booking.
Balance payment due 60 days prior to tour start date. Questions? Please contact us!

Single supplement: please inquire.


Tour Dates

Available the following weeks March through November. Other months also available on request, please inquire. (Please note that November through March is low season and some stores/restaurants will be closed.)

2019
March 3-7
March 10-14
March 17-21
March 24-28
March 31-April 4
April 7-11
April 14-18
April 21-25
April 28-May 2
May 5-9
May 12-16
May 19-23
May 26-30
June 2-6
June 9-13
June 16-20
June 23-27
June 30-July 4
July 7-11
July 14-18
July 21-25
July 28-August 1
August 4-8
August 11-15
August 18-22
August 25-29
September 1-5
September 8-12
September 15-19
September 22-26
September 29-October 3
October 6-10
October 13-17
October 20-24
October 27-31
November 3-7
November 10-14
November 17-21
November 24-28

Pricing & Dates

Class Pricing

Reviews

We gave this trip 5 stars
Evann & Linda
Florida
Trip taken April 2018
We absolutely loved our cooking tour experience. It was a perfect balance of cooking and touring mixed with just enough free time. Paolo was truly amazing and allowed as much customization as we would like. This allowed us to truly enjoy the visit and vacation. The cooking lessons themselves were so diverse in location, (although not as much in the actual food we cooked, but I know the Sicilians cook what is in season). The time each day spent was absolutely perfect and we can’t wait to go back!
No rating given with this review
The cooking classes were perfect. Chef Pietro was so much fun and provided so much philosophical knowledge about cooking and eating local and fresh foods, in addition to his culinary skills. But as wonderful as he was, it would have been nice to have a third chef experience, rather than going back to Pietro for the dessert class. Our trip to the country cooking was also great. Maria was the opposite of Pietro, and gave us a contrast between a chef and a "cook" (her word). She and her husband provided the true hands on family style experience that was fun, and educational as well. Overall, all the tours were great. Patrick was an incredible driver and so energetic and upbeat all the time, even in crazy traffic… The local guides were very knowledgeable and friendly. The Godfather tour will stand out just because of our host and how gracious he was. Wineries and meals there were amazing... I would definitely recommend the International Kitchen to friends and would love to do another trip myself. [Regarding The International Kitchen staff:] Your Chicago staff was very helpful. Adrian recommended our hotel in Sorrento, the one that your Amalfi Coast cooking school uses. It was beautiful, perfectly located, and the staff couldn't have been nicer. I did not correspond directly with your staff about our meals at the Hotel Diodoro, but seemed they were very attentive to our request for alternate dinner arrangements. Thank you for that! Marilyn R., CA