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Getting from Palermo to Agrigento

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Naperville, IL
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Getting from Palermo to Agrigento

Hi. Our family of 4 is taking a cruise in June, and we dock in Palermo on the morning of June 19th. We'd like to have a tour guide meet us at the Palermo dock and take us for a day tour of Agrigento, and get us back to the ship by 5 p.m. I've e-mailed 5 tour guide services in Sicily that I googled on the internet and haven't received responses from anyone, so I'm hoping someone can help me out!! Does anyone know of a tour guide company that will respond to my e-mails or phone calls and that is reputable? Also, I read a post on the Agrigento forum from June of 2007 that said that all roads except the main motorways are dirt tracks or sand tracks with one lane per way. Is this correct?

Thanks for any information you can give me!!

Manchester, UK
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11. Re: Getting from Palermo to Agrigento

I agree with Vagabonda, it comes down to personal taste.

I have been lucky enough to visit both of them and I felt I had two different experiences.

Agrigento had its 6 temples built along the south wall of the ancient city, slowly climbing up the hill so to be seen by anyone coming from the sea and still today representing the wealth and power that the city had at one time.

Tourists are jealously kept at a safe distance from the temples by the administration with a fence. The Temple of Concordia is beautiful and you can walk around it and admire its magnificency but you wont be allowed inside.

Along the whole intinary of the archaeological park it’s busy with tourists having photos in front the temples and in the space of 10yards you can hear five different languages. The tourist keep coming in waves when the coach trips arrive. School kinds, Germans, Frenc, Japanese, Brits, all on the same path, all with the same objective. Get to the hightes of the temples (Temple of Giunone). From there if you look north you'll see the modern Agrigento, but if you look south-west you'll see the blue waters of the Mediterranean sea.

Selinunte, the park has two main parts. The Eastern hill and the acropolis. The entrance of the park is on the Eastern hill where you find the rests of 3 temples. Walk between the temples and step inside the Temple of Hera (the best preserved) and feel the air flowing between the columns, walk within the ruins of the other two temples (Athena and Zeus) and get a feel of how big they were. From the Eastern hill you can choose to walk but there is an electric mini-bus that takes you to the acropolis through what once was the harbour.

Once you get to the acropolis feel free to wander through the streets of the town, perfectly orthogonal. Walk within the walls of ancient greek houses and temples, walk up the main street, all the way to the Northern Gate and enjoy the experience to have lived in a real Greek town, even if just for a short moment.

And standing at the most southern point of the acropolis you'll have the sea to your right and to your left and the most amazing sunset in front of you, and then you will understand why the Greeks choose this place to build their home.

Here & There
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for Sicily, Taormina
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12. Re: Getting from Palermo to Agrigento

And the Greeks certainly knew how to pick their spots - what an eye for beauty!

Agree with Sal73x - these two sights are very different and offer two very different experiences. Each is very much worth seeing and it really comes down to personal preference - and sometimes, convenience and time!

Vagabonda

Naperville, IL
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13. Re: Getting from Palermo to Agrigento

Wow! I just got a quote from Holiday Car Rental in Palermo, and they charge $1500.00 per DAY for a compact rental car. That seems kind of crazy, because it then costs less to have a tour guide take us to Agrigento or Selinunte for a 4-hour tour (that's about $600) than to rent a car for a day! I guess we're back to the drawing board;-)

Naperville, IL
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14. Re: Getting from Palermo to Agrigento

Whoops, my bad. I read Holiday Car Rental's rates incorrectly. Sorry to all those nice people out at Holiday Car Rental;-) They actually charge only about $100/day for a compact car, not including gas. That seems to be the best way to go, by far. Still haven't decided whether Agrigento or Selinunte is best. Does anyone know if there are English-speaking guided tours that are offered once you get to Selinunte or Agrigento?

Thanks---!

Here & There
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for Sicily, Taormina
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15. Re: Getting from Palermo to Agrigento

Your post was hysterical! :-)

In Agrigento, all the tourist offices can provide names of English speaking guides, or you could arrange for a guide at the entrance to the park, or contact Michael Gallo, an excellent guide.

www.sicilytravel.net/Agrigento_tours.htm

You can get information about the site at the ticket office in Selinunte.

Call the tourist office at 0924-46251 for guides.

Information on Selinunte:

traveldk.com/sicily/dk/highlight/selinunte

Vagabonda

Manchester, UK
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16. Re: Getting from Palermo to Agrigento

As far as I remember in Agrigento there are English speaking guides outside the ticket office. They usually try to gather 15-25 tourist together and then will show you round. The tour last for about 1 hour 20mins and they will be happy to answer any question you have. Priced between 7 -10 euros per person (kids go free...of course ;-).

In Selinunte at the ticket office is possible rent headphones with audioguide of the temples and history of the town.

Salvo

Here & There
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17. Re: Getting from Palermo to Agrigento

It's also possible to pick up electric carts in Selinunte to take around the entire site - they drop you off at each point and you arrange a pick up time that suits you.

Vagabonda

18. Re: Getting from Palermo to Agrigento

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