We were fortunate enough to get on Shannon’s 2018 Sicily tour, and it was a set of experiences we will always cherish. To start with, her tours are the perfect size – I came to feel like we were in a “traveling dinner party”. What this small group size enabled us to do was enjoy dinners and wines in intimate settings with restauranteurs, chefs, and vintners interacting with us personally. This made for truly memorable connections with Sicilians who are passionate about their crafts, as well as connections with each other.
In addition to the intimate group, the other thing that Shannon has perfected in her tour of Sicily is a perfect balance between relaxation time, amazing and unique cultural experiences, and of course incredible food and wine at the best vineyards in this amazing and beautiful land. We will never forget the venerable craft of the marionette show, and the witty and gregarious artisans who put this show on, as has been done for centuries. We ate fresh – as in made before our eyes – cheese with a saffron farmer, walked the Palermo and Catania markets with a couple native Sicilians, and learned new appreciation for the history and culture that have amassed in this crossroads of centuries of western civilization. Perhaps the most memorable was a private lesson and recital in the history of music in a 14th century home by a world renowned music historian, luthier, and musician who crafts ancient instruments and teaches their playing. These amazing experiences were always punctuated by great foods and sublime wines in beautiful settings.
While we anticipated great things in Sicily, our trip exceeded all of our expectations. We will definitely be making another trip with Shannon- and it will be hard to resist the temptation to repeat Sicily!
Bob & Margaret F. Washington D.C.
We enjoyed immensely our tour of Sicily in May with GrapeHops. This was our fifth tour with GrapeHops. We appreciate the careful attention to detail that seem to make the tour progress in a seamless fashion. The places we visited were informatively presented and amazing from Greek ruins to a family run saffron farm where we had fresh ricotta. The food, including cooking classes, and wines were remarkable examples of the regions we visited. Even though we had a full itinerary, we did not feel rushed, and overall the tour was relaxing and amazingly satisfying.
Don & Mary M. Marshfield, Wisconsin
Our Sicily Tour with Shannon of Grapehops exceeded even our already high expectations. Meeting the winemakers, seeing the actual vines, drinking the wine, eating the food – all were generous and delicious.
The tour was varied, well-paced, smoothly run, and hospitably informed by our guide, Gianluca, and by the locals he introduced us to. Our eight fellow travelers made dinners and tastings convivial and interesting.
Alex & Ann C. Berkeley, California