My name is Pasquale (Frank) Ferrara, welcome to my island home of Sicily.
I feel that my birth place island is the most splendorous place in the world, with uncontested beauty in archaeological monuments, magnificent views and culturally more fascinating than any other place on Earth.
A holiday to Sicily is a journey to the roots of the world, a journey to a rich source of nature, history and culture, melted into a small triangle of land in the center of the Mediterranean Sea.
With about 5,200,000 inhabitants, 25,711km2, Sicily is the most extensive region in Italy and the largest island in the Mediterranean and it is separated from the Italian peninsula by the Strait of Messina.
Almost a country in itself, it’s a piece of Europe with a bit of Africa and a touch of Asia all in one fascinating part of the world.
Sicily has always been a microcosm: a composite world in which people of different races, religions and languages have clashed and met in different periods of its history. The Phoenicians, the Carthaginians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Byzantines, the Vandals, the Arabs, the Normans, the Swabians, the Spanish, the French and the English each have had their own impact on the island. The ever changing influences in Sicily have created a unique interchange of civilisations, leaving a rich heritage in terms of culture, architecture, food and lifestyle.
It is my heartfelt desire to share the love I have for Bedda Sicilia with you, and the wondrous treasures it contains.
After visiting the cultural and natural wonders Sicily has to offer, return to Casa Catena and immerse yourself in an authentic Sicilian lifestyle. Wake to the smell of freshly baked bread and ricotta, dine with the locals and experience the joys of a simple way of life thousands of years in the making.
Located in the peaceful town of Francavilla di Sicilia, Casa Catena is the perfect base for your Sicilian travels. It is only 18km from the beautiful coastal town of Taormina, 48km from Messina to the north, and 69km from Catania Fontanarossa Airport.
Casa Catena comfortably houses up to 6 adults & includes:
Take in the views of Etna, surrounding villages of Motta Camastra and Castiglione perched atop the ridge, and explore the local wonders this historic town has to offer.
Casa Catena has one of the best-rated locations in Francavilla di Sicilia and is just a step away from these attractions.
Explore these local attractions as well as everything else Sicily has to offer, including Mount Etna, the ruins of Agrigento, the Aeolian Islands and more.
Select from the following tours overleaf and be conveniently picked up and delivered back to your door.
Alternatively, simply relax into the historical surrounds of Francavilla di Sicilia.
This is the common name of the most exciting island in the oldest sea in the world. Due to its history of totally different cultures, Sicily is uniquely blessed with natural beauty, exquisite monuments & architecture, and a rich tapestry of traditions that make it like no other place in the world. If you love history, nature, architecture, and a delicious variety of cuisine, this is the best place to experience a holiday full of emotion and satisfaction.
With the convenience of your own door to door shuttle, it is easy to join each tour and then return to the comfort of Casa Catena, Francavilla di Sicilia.
Excursion to the volcano Etna, the highest in Europe with its 3,350 meters, as well as UNESCO site since 2013. Departure by bus with Tour Leader and arrival at the “Rifugio Sapienza” at 1,900 meters. Stop with the possibility of soft trekking to visit the most recent lava flows and the Silvestri craters, now extinct. Possibility for lunch or snack optional.
Optional ascent by cable car up to 2,500 meters and continuing on board jeeps up to the authorized crater zones at approximately 3,000 meters with the assistance of licensed Guides of the CAI (Italian Alpine Club); a stop to admire the eventual activity of the summit craters in a safety zone according to weather conditions.
Warm clothing and suitable shoes are strongly recommended.
A unique occasion to admire the volcano Etna in the evocative atmosphere of the sunset. The volcano, perpetually active and UNESCO World Heritage site since 2013, with its 3,350 meters, is the highest in Europe. Departure by bus with Tour Leader to arrive at Etna’s station of altitude 1.900 meters. Short stop for services.
Optional ascent by off-road jeeps up to the authorized crater areas at approximately 3,000 meters escorted by licensed Guides of the CAI (Italian Alpine Club). Possibility to admire the sunset at a safe distance from the central crater. The darkness makes it possible to observe better an eventual volcanic activity. Stop until sunset and return at 1,900 mt. Dinner in a typical restaurant is an optional extra. We strongly recommend warm clothing and suitable shoes. Departure time may vary according to sunset time.
Two civilizations, the Greek and the Roman in one excursion. The opportunity to visit two antique cities of art, UNESCO World Heritage sites. Across Sicily by bus with Tour Leader and Local Guide service towards the city of Agrigento, situated on the south coast and famous for its archaeological park called “Valley of the Temples” consisting of well-preserved temples built by the Greeks between 510 and 430 BC.
Upon arrival in Agrigento, visit the Valley of the Temples (Juno, Concordia, Hercules, Zeus, Castor and Pollux). Break for lunch (extra). Continue to Piazza Armerina, in the center of Sicily for a visit to the well-known “Villa Romana del Casale” of about 3,500 square meters with its famous Roman mosaics dating back to the fourth century AD. Entrance fees to the sites extra.
A full tour of Mount Etna, a UNESCO site since 2013, through the various valleys with the possibility to explore the slopes of the craters with the help of an on-board Tour Leader. The first destination is the Alcantara Gorge, where it is possible to walk along the river bed by paying an extra ticket. The trip continues on board the “Circumetnea” an old traditional narrow-gauge train up to Adrano in the south.
Then by bus again to reach “Rifugio Sapienza” at altitude 1,900 meters on the southern side. Stop with the possibility of soft trekking to visit the most recent lava flows and the Silvestri craters, now extinct. Lunch is extra. Optional ascent by cable car up to 2,500 meters and continuing on board jeeps up to the authorized crater zones at approximately 3,000 meters with the assistance of licensed Guides. Warm clothing and suitable shoes recommended.
Excursion by bus with Tour Leader towards Syracuse, one of the most ancient Greek colony in Sicily, heritage of humanity and UNESCO site. Meet with the Local Guide and visit of the Archaeological Area of the V century. B.C.. with the Greek Theatre, the Roman Amphitheatre, the Altar of Hieron II and the Latomies of Paradise with the Ear of Dionysius.
After that, a visit to the historical center of the island of Ortigia, with the Temple of Apollo, the Cathedral, the important Baroque church built on an ancient temple, and the Fountain of Arethusa with the famous papyrus plant. Free time for an individual walking tour to the Grand Harbour with the “Foro Italico” on Porto Grande and optional lunch in typical restaurants. Entrance fees are extra. Suitable attire for visiting sacred sites is recommended.
A minicruise to discover 2 of the Aeolian Islands, an archipelago of 7 islands north of Sicily, famous for their lush vegetation and the typical Mediterranean architecture. The islands are the patrimony of humanity as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000. Depart by bus with Tour Leader to the port of Milazzo and then continue by private-owned motorboat to the island of Lipari.
Visit the historical center with the Archaeological Park and the Cathedral. Free shopping time in shops on the island then back on board to sail along the “Faraglioni” and the “Horse’s Cave”. Arrival at Vulcano with the possibility to bathe in the sulfurous mud baths in a dedicated paying area (extra). Optional lunch on the island. On the return, navigating along the coast viewing the “Rock of Papa Giovanni”. Eco-tax to be paid on board not included. Hat, bathing suit, towel and sunscreen lotion recommended.
Mini cruise to explore two of the most famous Aeolian Islands, UNESCO world heritage site since 2000. Panarea is very famous for its fine architecture, and Stromboli, island of conical shape, is dominated by a perpetually active volcano. Departure by bus with Tour Leader to the port of Milazzo and proceeding on board a private-owned motorboat towards Panarea.
Visit a typical village, or enjoy the beach and have lunch in a local restaurant (extra). Back on board to sail around the rocks in front of Panarea. Transfer to Stromboli to land for a tour of the island until sunset. Return on board and light dinner with drinks included. Visit from the sea of the “Sciara del Fuoco”, with its spectacular explosions weather permitting. Eco-tax to be paid on board not included. Return in the late evening depending on sunset time. Wind jacket, hat, bathing suit, towel and sunscreen recommended.
Visit two of the most important cities of art in Sicily: Palermo and Cefalù, UNESCO sites from 2015 for their Arab-Norman itineraries. Palermo preserves the most important Arab- Norman, Byzantine and Spanish monuments. Departure by bus with Tour Leader and arrive in Palermo, meeting up with the Local Guide and the tour starts by walking through the Quattro Canti, the Martorana church, Piazza Bellini, Piazza Pretoria, the Cathedral and the whole historical center. Visit of the typical local market “Capo”.
Or alternatively, an individual visit of Monreale, famous for its mosaics. After lunch (extra), departure for Cefalù on the north coast. Visit of the historical center and the Norman Cathedral with the famous mosaic of Christ Pantocrator. Return via Messina. Entrance fees to the sites extra. Suitable attire for visiting sacred sites is recommended.
Visit Mount Etna, the highest active volcano in Europe, a UNESCO site since 2013 and discover the local life and history of a town on the slopes of the volcano. Departure by bus with Tour Leader from Taormina towards the Alcantara Gorge for a short stop (entrance extra). The tour will then proceed to Randazzo, an antique Medieval village, with a visit of the Cathedral, built of lava stone, and of the typical Sunday market.
Then, travel by bus to reach the altitude of 1,900 mt. Stop with the possibility to do soft trekking visiting the most recent lava flows. Possibility to have lunch at a local restaurant (extra). Optional ascent by jeeps to the authorized crater zones at approximately 3,000 meters assisted by licensed guides of the CAI (Italian Alpine Club). Stop to admire the eventual activity of the summit craters in the area of security. Warm clothing and suitable shoes recommended.
In a single day, the possibility to visit the Capital of the “Baroque”, a UNESCO heritage since 2002, to admire the mosaics of an ancient Roman villa and to discover the life of a fishing village. Departure by bus with Tour Leader on board. Arrival at Noto and a visit on foot of the Baroque historical center with its suggestive cathedral splendidly restored.
Continue towards the archaeological site of the House of Tellaro to visit the wonderful mosaics of the IV century AD. Entrance fees are extra. Continue to Marzamemi, a typical fishing village and free time for swimming and for shopping of typical products of tuna fishing “Tonnara”. Lunch optional. Recommended clothing: hat, bathing suit, bath towel and sunscreen lotion.
Tour dedicated to shopping in a reconstructed village in the Sicilian architectural style of the end of ‘800. The Sicilian Outlet Village, located in the center of Sicily, offers all year round discounts from 30% to 70% off the list price. More than 140 shops including Gucci, Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Trussardi, Versace, Michael Kors, Zegna, Tod’s, Hogan, Fay, Etro, Polo Ralph Lauren, Hugo Boss, M Missoni, Cavalli Class, La Perla, Ferrari, Calvin Klein, Abercrombie & Fitch, Brooks Brothers and many other top brands.
The location of the village is in the midst of the green countryside with numerous places for refreshments and play areas for children. Our Tour Leader will give general information about Sicily and of the “Sicilian Outlet Village” in particular. All participants will receive a discount card offering 10% off the outlet price in shops joining the initiative. Lunch not included.
Upon arrival in Catania simply take a shuttle to Francavilla di Sicilia and your home away from home at the Casa Catena apartments.
All transport will be booked during your stay to take you to your selected tour departure location and return you back to your apartment using a local shuttle service.
The 2 apartments can be booked for long or short stays for families, couples or large groups. Up to 20 people can be booked when combining both apartments.
Your booking can be included with or without return flights from Australia or other global locations.
Contact us today and begin your magnificent and historical journey of Sicily. Phone or email Frank or simply visit our website and fill in our online booking form for itinerary and quotation.