The Secret Side of Sicily

sicily walking tour

Scheduled tours

2024 dates


  • May 22-28 available places
  • Sept 11-17 available places
  • Oct 16-22 bookable upon request

Scheduled tours

2025 dates


  • MAY 21-27 available places
  • SEPT. 10-16 available places

Private tours

price p/p: varies according to group size. Check Price below here

Departures: anytime

SCHEDULED GROUP SIZE with guaranteed departure: min 1 – max 18 guests

PRIVATE GROUP SIZE: min 1 – no limit

DURATION: 7 Days & 6 Nights


  HOTEL STYLE: very comfortable to stylish – ensuite bathroom



Overview on Sicily Walking Tour

Experience the less travelled enchanting eastern side of the island and discover Sicily’s rich cultural tapestry and diverse awe-inspiring terrain.

History, Culture, Food and Adventure

Explore the must-see historically significant Ortigia islet, the elegance of Noto’s baroque architecture and the magical beauty of Taormina. Trek through the lesser-known untouched beauty of the Vendicari natural reserve and be swept away to the mesmerizing Aeolian islands. Ascend a volcano and enjoy breathtaking vistas on island hillside trail treks. Along the way, immerse yourself in Sicilian culture with traditional music and encounters with local artisans. This tour takes you on a captivating exploration of Sicily’s hidden treasures!

Our Sicily Walking Tour is also a gourmet delight. Savour delectable treats like cannoli, pasta with sardines and raisins, and fried calamari, complemented by local Catarratto and Insolia wines during our delightful lunches and dinners. The Aeolian islands remain a sanctuary for local fishing and agriculture communities, preserving their unique way of life.
Don’t be surprised when you find yourself enjoying your farm to table meals in picturesque and remote places!

This off the beaten track tour invites you to discover the unique cultural and geographical wonders of this secret side of Sicily.

Join us for an unforgettable adventure in Sicily! See you there



    6 night stay at hotels (one 5 and one 4 starred hotel with ensuite bathrooms). Book early and we will try to accommodate you in a room with a view.

  All breakfasts, 5 lunches, 4 dinners. Local wine is always included with lunches and dinners. Vegetarian? Vegan? No problem!

  Transportation along the tour

  We carry your luggage from hotel to hotel

1 local guide for groups smaller than 10. Groups larger than 10 people will be guided by 2 local guides (valid for group tours)

Entrance tickets for all the special events

Boat ride

 All taxes

Itinerary of Sicily Walking Tour

Day 1 – Meeting in Siracusa and visit of the city (night at hotel in Siracusa)

Sicily Walking Tour commences! Today you meet the guide that will present the tour during a quick briefing. Your city guide will take you to explore this beautiful and posh city that was founded by the Greeks.  Ortigia, the old center of Siracusa, is an amazing combination of little streets and alleys and big piazzas. One of the largest squares is the Cathedral square that is the symbol of Siracusa. We visit the Cathedral inside, and you soon realize how it was first a Greek temple than turned into a church. The fountain Arethusa is another symbol that we visit: a huge amount of fresh water available right in the middle of the city.
Dinner tonight is at a delicious restaurant that serves Sicilian specialties.

3 km = 1,8 miles

Caportigia Boutique Hotel- Siracusa



Day 2 – Vendicari natural reserve and the baroque town of Noto (night at hotel in Siracusa)

After a nice breakfast based on Sicilian specialties, we drive for about 30 minutes to get to the Natural reserve of Vendicari. The reserve was established in 1984 to protect the fauna, flora and the archaeological remains. The algae called Posydonia is an environmental indicator that enriches the sea with a big amount of oxygen. The special condition attracts more than 300 species of animals such as flamingos, herons and sea turtles. We visit the relic of a Tonnara (tuna fish farm) that dates back the seventeenth century and used until last century. Our hike is on a relaxed coastal path for about two hours. We get to a farm restaurant that serves their own production of vegetables, wine and olive oil.
After lunch a 20 minutes van ride take us to Noto. In 2002 Noto was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. After 1693 earthquake the former town was re-built in a different location with a baroque style and today this town is considered one of the world’s capitals of Baroque art. About 1 hour of free time to enjoy a delicious pistacchio gelato or lemon granita (ice slush) and relax in main street. We drive back to our hotel.
Later we enjoy a great restaurant in the old city that will serve fresh fish and seafood.

7,4 km = 4,59 miles

Caportigia Boutique Hotel – Siracusa

breakfast, lunch, dinner

SHOW DAY 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

Day 3 Taormina! (night at hotel in Lipari)

Sicilian breakfast is amazingly rich: cannoli, great espresso coffee, all kinds of breads. After breakfast we take one-hour and 20 minute ride to get to Taormina. Upon arrival, engage in a rejuvenating trek through the lush landscapes surrounding the town, offering breathtaking views of the Ionian Sea and Mount Etna. The ancient theater, perched on a hill, stands as a testament to the region’s rich history. After the trek, savor leisure time strolling along Corso Umberto, exploring charming boutiques and enjoying local cuisine on your own.
We then drive from here to the harbor of Milazzo (about 1 hour drive). We take 1 hour hydrofoil ride to Lipari. We then settle at our new hotel with swimming pool. Dinner will follow at the hotel restaurant.

4 km = 2,5 miles
Aktea Resort – Lipari
breakfast,  dinner

Day 4 – The southern side of the Island of Lipari (night in Lipari)

After breakfast we take a nice walk in the southern half of the Island awaits for us with amazing views on the Island of Vulcano. The hike will take us to a panoramic point through a path surrounded by beautiful villas and macchia mediterranea (Mediterranean shrub) that produces a pleasant smell.
In the afternoon we visit the town of Lipari and it’s beautiful castle.
Dinner based on many different kinds of pizza will follow at a small pizzeria in main street of Lipari.

6 km = 3,7 miles
Aktea Resort – Lipari
breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 5 – The Island of Vulcano (night in Lipari)

Your route today begins with a boat ride to the Island of Vulcano. After an espresso caffè stop at the port of Vulcano we start our hike to the mouth of the volcano. The word “volcano”, and its equivalent in several European languages, derives from the name of this island, which in turn derives from Vulcan, the Roman god of fire. It takes one hour to reach the main crater, known as Caldera de La Fossa. The caldera is huge, with a 500 meters diameter. The last eruption here occurred in 1890, but there are plenty of fumaroles that eject steam. If you don’t feel like hiking up to the top of the mountain, we will provide an optional program for you, strolling in the village of Vulcano with shops and easy walks in the surroundings.
Lunch is served in a simple but lovely restaurant with seats outside. We will enjoy one of the most well know food of the island: pani cunzato (focaccia seasoned with anchovies, fresh tomatoes, capers, mozzarella). It’s delicious!!
In the afternoon we take a boat ride back to Lipari for rest time at hotel or for exploring the town of Lipari (so many things to do and see in Lipari).
Dinner tonight is on your own. Your guide will provide options for restaurants.

3 km = 3,7 miles with some elevation gain or alternative easier walk
Aktea Resort or Cutimare Hotel – Lipari
breakfast, lunch (dinner on own)


Day 6 – The Island of Salina (night in Lipari)

After a well-presented breakfast we take a boat and we cruise to the Island of Salina. The name of the island derives from saltern as in the south east of the island there was a salt production plant.
The boat will drop us off in the small village of Rinella and with a short bus ride we get to the town of Leni. After having explored the town we venture on a hike with amazing view on the archipelago, allowing us to see the islands of Alicudi, Filicudi, Panarea and Stromboli. Today lunch is al-fresco with delicious panini. At the end of the walk we get refreshed at a local snack café in Leni. We take the boat back to Lipari. Some time of rest at your 4 starred hotel before we get ready for the farewell feast to celebrate new friends and Aeolian Islands.

8 km = 5 miles
Aktea Resort or Cutimare Hotel – Lipari
breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 7 – Transfer to Catania, Departure

A scenic hydrofoil ride delivers you to the port of Milazzo. You arrive in Catania by early afternoon. We stop in Catania train station and then Catania airport. Do not plan to fly back earlier than 4pm if you are planning to fly on the same day of the end of tour. Do not book your train from the Catania station before 2.30pm

8 km = 5 miles
Aktea Resort or Cutimare Hotel – Lipari
breakfast, lunch, dinner


note on the itinerary

Please bear in mind that this is a typical itinerary, and the actual walks and sites may vary due to season, special events, or weather. We reserve the right to alter the itinerary since tour arrangements are made up to a year in advance, and in unforeseen circumstances that mandate changes may arise. Itinerary changes are made to improve the tour and your experience.


Here are some examples of what you’ll be eating and drinking, during the tour. It’s a gourmet experience!

Tuscany hotel

Sicilian seafood

Sicilian seafood is a culinary delight that reflects the island’s rich Mediterranean heritage. Here’s a description of Sicilian seafood…

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Sicily, surrounded by the pristine waters of the Mediterranean, boasts a seafood tradition that is as vibrant and diverse as the island itself. Picture azure coastlines meeting rocky shores, where an abundance of marine life thrives in these fertile waters. Sicilian seafood is a testament to the harmonious marriage of nature and gastronomy.

Freshness is the cornerstone of Sicilian seafood cuisine. Each day, local fishermen haul in a bountiful catch of treasures from the sea. From succulent prawns to tender calamari, plump mussels, and sweet, briny clams, you’ll find a seafood lover’s paradise here. But the crowning jewel of Sicilian seafood is undoubtedly the catch of the day, whether it’s fragrant swordfish, delicate red snapper, or the revered tuna, each dish is an ode to the ocean’s bounty.

Sicilian seafood is prepared with an artisanal touch, passed down through generations. The flavors are simple, allowing the natural tastes of the sea to shine. Grilled over open flames, marinated in fragrant herbs and olive oil, or gently stewed in tomatoes, garlic, and wine, Sicilian seafood dishes are a testament to the island’s dedication to preserving tradition while embracing innovation.

As you savor each bite, you’ll discover a symphony of flavors. The Sicilian sun infuses the seafood with a unique sweetness, while the salty breeze adds a bracing freshness. Herbs like oregano and basil, as well as the island’s renowned citrus fruits, such as lemons and oranges, provide a burst of aromatic zest that elevates every dish.

When you indulge in Sicilian seafood, you embark on a journey through history, culture, and the essence of the Mediterranean. It’s an experience that captures the heart and soul of this beautiful island, where the sea meets the kitchen to create unforgettable culinary masterpieces.

Tuscany hotel

Arancine, rice balls

Arancine, a beloved Sicilian specialty, are delicious rice balls that are a true culinary delight. These mouthwatering treats are an iconic part of Sicilian street food and are cherished by locals and visitors alike. Here’s a description of arancine in Sicily…

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Arancine are typically made by taking a mound of perfectly cooked and seasoned risotto rice, which is often sautéed with a flavorful ragù (meat sauce) or mixed with ingredients like peas, mozzarella cheese, and sometimes saffron. The rice mixture is then shaped into round or conical balls, resembling small oranges, which is where their name “arancine” comes from (as “arancia” means orange in Italian).

Next, these rice balls are coated in a light, crispy breadcrumb crust, which gives them a satisfying crunch when you bite into them. They are then deep-fried to golden perfection, ensuring a delightful contrast between the crispy exterior and the tender, flavorful rice filling.

The flavors of arancine can vary across Sicily, with different regions and even individual chefs putting their own unique twist on the classic recipe. Some variations include fillings like ham and cheese, spinach and ricotta, or even seafood for a coastal twist.

Arancine are not only a delicious snack or appetizer but also a symbol of Sicilian culinary tradition and innovation. They can be found in local eateries, street food stalls, and bakeries throughout the island, making them a must-try when exploring the rich gastronomic landscape of Sicily. Enjoying a freshly fried arancina is a delightful experience that embodies the flavors and warmth of Sicilian cuisine.

Tuscany hotel

Pane cunzato

Pane cunzato, a traditional Sicilian dish, is a true delight for the senses. It starts with a rustic loaf of Sicilian bread, typically a round or oval-shaped loaf with a thick, crunchy crust and a soft, airy interior. The bread is sliced horizontally, creating a large “sandwich” base.

The magic of pane cunzato lies in its toppings. Generously drizzled with the finest extra-virgin olive oil, the bread becomes the canvas for a vibrant mosaic of flavors. Here’s what you might find adorning this Sicilian specialty…

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1. **Tomatoes:** Sliced or diced ripe tomatoes provide a juicy, refreshing layer.

2. **Cured Anchovies:** Salty, briny cured anchovies are a staple in pane cunzato, adding a burst of intense umami flavor.

3. **Caciocavallo or Pecorino Cheese:** Thin slices of sharp, aged cheese, often either caciocavallo or pecorino, are layered onto the bread, contributing a rich, savory element.

4. **Olives:** Sicily is renowned for its olives, and they play a prominent role in pane cunzato. Varieties like black Gaeta olives or green Castelvetrano olives offer diverse flavors and textures.

5. **Fresh Herbs:** A handful of fragrant fresh herbs, such as basil, oregano, or parsley, is scattered over the top, infusing the dish with aromatic notes.

6. **Red Onion:** Thinly sliced red onions provide a sweet and pungent crunch.

7. **Salt and Pepper:** A pinch of salt and a sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper enhance all the flavors.

8. **Optional Extras:** Depending on regional variations and personal preferences, you might also encounter ingredients like capers, roasted red peppers, or even a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

The result is a mouthwatering, open-faced sandwich that combines the freshness of the Mediterranean with the bold flavors of Sicilian cuisine. Pane cunzato is a beloved street food and picnic dish in Sicily, offering a satisfying and flavorful experience that captures the essence of this beautiful Italian island. It’s a must-try for anyone exploring Sicilian culinary traditions.

Tuscany hotel


Cannoli are a beloved and iconic Sicilian dessert, renowned for their delicious and indulgent qualities. These delectable treats consist of delicate, crispy pastry shells that are typically tube-shaped. The pastry shell is made from a mixture of flour, sugar, and a touch of wine or vinegar, which gives it its distinctive texture and flavor…

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The magic of cannoli lies within their rich and creamy filling. Traditionally, the filling is a velvety mixture of ricotta cheese, sugar, and sometimes a hint of vanilla or cinnamon. The ricotta is whipped to perfection, creating a smooth and luxurious consistency. Some variations also incorporate candied fruits, chocolate chips, or pistachios into the filling for added flavor and texture.

Cannoli are often garnished with powdered sugar, a sprinkling of cocoa powder, or chopped pistachios on the ends, adding a delightful contrast to the sweet, creamy interior and the crisp outer shell. They come in various sizes, from bite-sized minis to larger versions that are perfect for savoring slowly.

Sicilian cannoli are not just a dessert; they are a culinary work of art, embodying the essence of Sicilian cuisine and culture. When in Sicily, indulging in a fresh cannolo is a must-do experience that will tantalize your taste buds and leave you with a sweet memory of the island’s culinary delights.

Tuscany hotel

Granita and brioche

Granita and brioche are a beloved and iconic Sicilian breakfast or snack combination that captures the essence of the island’s culinary culture. Here’s a description of each…

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1. **Granita**:
– Granita is a semi-frozen dessert that resembles a slushy or shaved ice. It’s made by blending or scraping together ice crystals, sugar, and flavorings. The most popular flavor of granita in Sicily is often citrus-based, using fresh lemons or oranges, but it comes in a variety of other flavors as well, including almond, coffee, strawberry, and more.
– Sicilian granita is distinct because it has a smooth and delicate texture, more like a sorbet, rather than the coarse or chunky texture found in other icy desserts. The secret lies in the slow churning and scraping process during preparation.
– It’s typically served in a glass or a bowl, often accompanied by a sweet, fluffy brioche (brioche con gelato), especially during the summer months. The refreshing and sweet granita provides a delightful contrast to the warm, buttery brioche.

2. **Brioche**:
– Sicilian brioche, also known as “brioche col tuppo” or simply “tuppo,” is a sweet, yeasted bread roll with a soft and fluffy texture. It’s slightly sweetened with sugar and often flavored with a hint of vanilla or citrus zest.
– What makes Sicilian brioche unique is its distinctive shape. It’s typically round and features a “tuppo,” a knot or bun on top, which gives it a characteristic appearance. The brioche is lightly glazed with a sugar syrup or egg wash before baking, giving it a glossy finish.
– Brioche is often enjoyed in various ways. One of the most popular ways to savor it is by splitting it open and filling it with a generous scoop of granita, creating a delightful sandwich-like treat. The contrast between the slightly sweet, tender brioche and the icy, flavorful granita is a harmonious and indulgent combination.

Together, granita and brioche are a Sicilian culinary tradition that combines the refreshing coolness of granita with the soft, sweet comfort of brioche, making it a must-try experience for anyone visiting Sicily, especially on a hot summer day.

Tuscany hotel

Wines in Sicily

Nero d’Avola was one of the most popular and widely recognized red wine grape varieties in Sicily. It’s often referred to as the “Black Grape of Avola” and is known for producing rich, full-bodied red wines with flavors of dark fruits and a hint of spice…

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However, the popularity of wines can change over time, and new trends and varieties may have emerged since then. Sicily is home to a diverse range of grape varieties and wine regions, so there are many other noteworthy wines produced in the region as well, including whites like Grillo and Catarratto, and other reds like Frappato and Cerasuolo di Vittoria.

Accommodations with ensuite bathroom

Sicilian Flavors Hotel

Caportigia Boutique Hotel – Siracusa

Cleverly realized by skilled workers, the rooms of Caportigia Boutique Hotel are elegantly furnished and enriched by sophisticated details and, despite the central position they guarantee relax and tranquillity by the complete soundproofing. Equipped with new technologies and high-speed WI-FI connection, the rooms of our hotel in Siracusa are designed to guarantee to customers a regenerating sleep and a relaxing stay, thanks to the quality of beds and pillows. See Caportigia hotel website.


Sicilian Flavors Hotel

GrandE albergo Alfeo – Siracusa

The hotel is located in the historic Umberto center of Syracuse, a stone’s throw from the fascinating island of Ortigia. You can reach the monumental attractions, and in general every corner of the city in just a few minutes. All the rooms of the early 20th century noble palace of the Grande Albergo Alfeo have been completely renovated and made welcoming. Check their website.


Sicilian Flavors Hotel

Aktea Resort – Lipari

Situated in a very convenient location close to the small town center of Lipari the Hotel Aktea offers all the comforts of a newly restyled hotel with swimming pool. This is going to be the base of our excursions during our stay on the Aeolian Islands. See Aktea Hotel website



2024 Private tour

Price per person changes depending on the occupancy number of your private group. Valid 2024
Number of guests price in double room (euros) single supplement (euros)
1 contact us  
2 or 3 5070 640
4 or 5 3640 640
6 or 7 3420 640
8 or 9  3250 640
10 or 11 3030 640
12 or more 2920 640
More guests? Please ask us a quote. We can also tailor the tour to your needs.
  • deposit 300 EURO
  • balance is due 95 days ahead of trip beginning date
  • you can pay in instalments
  • if you travel in July or August there is a seasonal surcharge of 300 euro per person

2025 Private tour

Price per person changes depending on the occupancy number of your private group. Valid 2025
Number of guests price in double room (euros) single supplement (euros)
1 contact us  
2 or 3 5690 350
4 or 5 4090 350
6 or 7 3890 350
8 or 9  3590 350
10 or 11 3440 350
12 or more 3290 350

More guests? Please ask us a quote. We can also tailor the tour to your needs.

  • deposit 300 EURO
  • balance is due 95 days ahead of trip beginning date
  • you can pay in instalments
  • if you travel in July or August there is a seasonal surcharge of 300 euro per person



Ermes and Gianni were fantastic guides. They complemented each other with their guiding and jokes etc. We would recommend this tour to others.


Klive, South Africa We had a fantastic group and the trip was more than we could have wished for.


A fantastic, boutique walking tour. Ermes and Gianni were great guides who were very accommodating and supportive; Hotels were in great location, clean and friendly staff. Breakfast was great. Great food. The ability to accommodate for individuals food requirements was great.

Helen W (Australia), 2023

We loved both Gianni and Orietta! 

Charles, USA

We had a fantastic group and the trip was more than we could have wished for.

Klive, South Africa

The best way to get to know a country, is to walk with the locals! This week in Sicily with Gianni and Ermes was an intimate experience of the hospitality, the food, the geology and the life of the Sicilians. Highly recommended!

Eras, South Africa




Founder, trip organizer and guide at Walk About Italy (with a degree in Geology)

I am 51 years old.  Geology is my background (Ph.D.) but to me life is about more than an academic degree. Music and walking are my passions. I have been a certified guide for nature walks since 1999. After working many years as a guide and also in the back stage of the travel industry for foreign walking tour companies, I earned my Tour Organizer business license, valid in Italy and the rest of the world. Let me organize your vacation to Tuscany and other parts of Italy.

Tours he guides: Tuscany, Amalfi, Sicily, Umbria – Assisi & Le Marche



I was born to travel the world (with a degree in International Relations and Human Rights)

Native of Palermo, with degrees in International Relations and Human Rights, Ermes has spent years working in social tourism and as a cultural mediator. Ermes has been travelling the world and now  with an extensive knowledge of history, flora, and fauna, looks forward to sharing his expertise.

Tours he guides: Sicily and Amalfi



a love for travels (with a degree in foreign languages)

Orietta guides our Sicily trip. A native Sicilian, Orietta grew up in Germany. She has got a degree in foreign languages. Because of her love for nature Orietta earned her qualification as licensed guide, tour leader and guide for nature trails.

Orietta loves to travel. You can stop with her and talk about all the destinations you have seen.
She also gives tours to people who are interested in searching their Sicilian roots through  genealogy research first and then inviting guests to meet the family. Awesome, isn’t it?
Orietta is associated to Addiopizzo, a group of professionals that work for mafia-free tourism, a new frontier for the ethical tourist.

Tours she guides: Sicily

Trip facts

group meets here:

Hotel in Siracusa (check the hotel’s name of your departure)

at what time?

4.00 pm

trip ends here:

Catania train station and airport

at what time?

2 pm

Useful information on the tour


How to prepare for this trip

Walking or jogging for 60 minutes 3 times a week for 5 weeks ahead of trip will make your experience more enjoyable. In case you live in a flat area you might also incorporate some steps in your physical activity.


What to bring:

  • Walking shoes with good traction (sometimes we might have mud on the trail)
  • Hat, Swimming suit, sun cream, water bottle to refill with tap water
  • Dinners at Italian restaurants do not require any special dress code.
  • Wear shoes with good traction. 
  • We provide walking sticks.

An average day of the trip

On a typical day you hike/walk with your guide in the morning for 3 hours, then we stop at a restaurant or farmhouse for lunch (lunch can last 1hour and half). We serve local food and wines as we believe that food plays an important role in the enjoyment of Italy.
In the afternoon there might be some more walking or town stroll. Around 4.30 or 5pm your guide will take you back to the hotel.
Before dinner you will be able to rest a couple of hours.
Local wine is always included for lunch or dinner. We serve vino della casa (house wine). You are welcome to buy your own wine from the list.



In general, the climate in Sicily is very mild. Usually summers on the coast are hot with little or no rain. July and August are the hottest months (but still nice for walking as there is always a breeze blowing up on the hills). Spring (April and May) and Autumn (October and November) are milder. You can have some drops of rain but not too many. Winter is colder but you still can count on many sunny days.

Month   avg. High     avg. Low

Apr   66 °F (19 °C)    46 °F (8 °C)
May  73 °F (23 °C)   54 °F (12 °C)
Jun     81 °F (27 °C)   59 °F (15 °C)
Sep    81 °F (27 °C)   59 °F (15 °C)
Oct     72 °F (22 °C)  52 °F (11 °C)
Nov    61 °F (16 °C)  45 °F (7 °C)

Tipping your guides

Single Guide Tour: If your tour is led by a single guide, it is customary to provide a minimum tip of 20 euros per day, per customer. Your guide will be your primary source of information and assistance throughout the tour, and this gesture will reflect your gratitude for their personalized service.

Dual Guide Tour: In cases where your tour is led by two guides, we recommend a minimum tip of 10 euros per day, per customer, for each guide. This ensures that both guides are acknowledged for their contributions to your tour experience.

Tipping your drivers

If you wish to tip your drivers each of you might want to tip them 5 euro per day per driver.

Extra expenses

Plan to have extra cash or money in your credit card enough to buy a couple of coffee or tea every day (5 euros average) . One night out of six you are on your own for dinner (20-25 euros per meal per person, average)

Snapshots from the tour

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