Social events & cultural tours



Sunday, 16th September

Time:             17:15 – 20:00
Place:             Ancient Theatre in Taormina, a unique and  unforgettable location to open SOFT 2018
Admission:    Free access for all registered participants, accompanying persons and exhibitors.  

For security reasons, admission to the Teatro Antico will be allowed only to registered participant carrying the Symposium badge. Participants who have no time to collect the badge before the opening ceremony can show a copy of the registration confirmation letter with the barcode sent by e-mail. Please remember to print and carry it with you.

Transfer:         Transportation will be provided from Giardini Naxos to Taormina and back. Transportation will be provided by buses leaving the Symposium venue from 14:45 to 15:45 to Taormina (Porta Catania). The participants will have the opportunity to walk along the magnificent baroque centre of Taormina (about 1.2 km) to reach the Teatro Antico and to admire the view on the coast and the ETNA vulcano. After the Ceremony the participants may either return to Giardini Naxos or have dinner in Taormina. Shuttle service to Giardini Naxos will be available at Porta Catania at 20:30 (at the end of the ceremony), at 22:00 and at  23:30 hours. Pre-registration is required.

Monday, 17th September

Time:             18:30 – 20:00
Place:            In the green park of Atahotel Naxos Beach,  in front of the beach, Giardini Naxos
Admission:    Free access for all registered participants, accompanying persons and exhibitors

Transfer:        No  transportation will be provided.

Wednesday, 19th September

Thursday, 20th September

Time:             19:30 – 23:00
Place:             "Radice Pura" in Giarre, an enchanting location rooted in the landscape of Sicily between Etna and the Ionian Sea.
Admission:    Free access for all delegates and accompanying persons with a valid ticket. 

Transfer:         Transportation will be provided from Giardini Naxos to Giarre and back.

TOUR TO ORTIGIA (SYRACUSE) - September 19, afternoon

 Leaving the Ata hotel Naxos Beach by coach with an English speaking guide, we enter the freeway to the south,  motoring between the impressive shape of Mount Etna and the blue-green Ionic sea, passing among orchards of orange and lemon trees. After about 1 hour and half we shall reach Syracuse.  This magnificent town, one of the most important archaeological sites in Sicily, was founded by Greeks in 734 BC. Its growth was rapid and Syracuse soon became one of the most important towns in Sicily. The town fought many enemies and at last was conquered by the  Romans in 212 BC. After the Romans the Arabs, the Normans  and the Aragonese  occupied  the  city.  Arriving in Syracuse you will visit the old city located on the small island of Ortigia. Since busses are not allowed in this area we shall leave the bus at the parking area  and  will continue  our visit on foot :  Pancali Square, the ruins of the Apollo’s temple  dating to the first quarter of the 6th century BC, Corso Matteotti, the main and most elegant shopping area, Archimede Square with the fountain of Artemide. The walking tour of the area keeps on with    the Cathedral from the exterior and   Fountain Aretusa. We shall give you some free time for wandering around and  flavouring the atmosphere, shopping or enjoying a cappuccino or an ice cream.

In the end, gathering of all the participants and departure from Syracuse back to Giardini Naxos .


13.30 depart from Giardini Naxos

15.15 arrive Ortigia parking

15.30/17.00 walking tour of Ortigia

17.00/18.30 free time

18.45 departure from Syracuse

20.30 arrive at Ata Hotel Naxos Beach hotel

Rate per person Included in the registration fee
Rate includes Deluxe motor-coach, english speaking guide, entrance ticket, vat.
Time 13:30 – 20:30 
Level of difficulty   Easy


TOUR TO THE VOLCANO  ETNA 1900 mt – September 19, afternoon

We shall depart from Ata Hotel Naxos Beach in Giardini Naxos.

We shall enjoy a panoramic road winding up the slopes of Mount Etna, passing by the villages of Zafferana and Santa Venerina and across woods of chestnuts, hazelnuts, fertile fields and vineyards. Large areas of solidified lava, effects of past eruptions will let you admire the black petrified rivers descending from the top of the mountain Etna.

Etna is the largest and tallest volcano of Europe, and one of the most active volcanoes on the Earth. Its eruptions occur both at the summit, where currently there are four craters, and from its flanks, down to a few hundred meters above the sea-level. 

Once we arrive at 1900 meters we will visit the Silvestri Craters. Late in the afternoon, on the way back to Giardini Naxos, we will visit Zafferana Etnea.

Rate per person Included in the registration fee
Rate includes Deluxe motor-coach; English speaking guide; vat.
Time 14:00 – 19:30
Level of difficulty   Easy
Notice Comfortable walking shoes and warm casual clothing are recommended.


EXTRA TOUR TO THE  VOLCANO  ETNA 2900 mt - September 19, afternoon

Only for those who wish to go up to 2900 meters, once we arrive at the Silvestri Craters, we shall begin our exciting climb towards the summit of the volcano, first by cable car and then by four wheel drive minivans. We will reach an altitude of about 2900 meters above the  sea level (8800 feet), close to where the most recent crater opened, and will go on on foot for a short panoramic walk in the area of the craters.  

Rate per person € 66,00
Rate includes Deluxe motor-coach, English speaking guide, cable car and four wheel drive minivans, vat. 
Time 14:00 - 20:00
Level of difficulty  Difficult
Notice Comfortable walking shoes and warm casual clothing are recommended.Not recommended for guest with reduced mobility or with cardiac problems and high blood pressure.





September, 17

Catania and Cyclops coast

€ 34,00

September, 18 Messina Museum & Cathedral € 36,00
September, 20 Savoca & Forza D’Agrò : On the footsteps of “Godfather” € 28,00


TOUR TO CATANIA - September 17, full day

 An English speaking guide will pick up us from ATA Hotel Naxos Beach Hotel on departure time, get on board on our comfortable buses and then drive to Catania

Catania is a really splendid Baroque city and provincial capital. It is situated on an extensive plain of citrus groves on the Ionian sea at the foot of mount Etna. The town, due also to its  port, is a busy industrial and commercial centre.. With its 500,000 inhabitants, Catania is the second city of Sicily. We suggest a walking tour through the commercial centre of Catania, which has a lot of shops and famous boutiques. Its remarkable geographic location, with a setting that includes Mount Etna and the Ionian Sea, has played a major role in the thousands of years of history of this city. The growth of Catania has clearly been affected by its relationship with the volcano: the volcano made the fields remarkably fertile and as the lava cooled it served as a quarry for the volcanic stone with which houses were built. We shall start the walking tour through Uzeda Gate and then arrive at the Cathedral Square, built immediately after the earthquake of 1693 . In the main square we shall admire the fountain of the elephant, the symbol of the town. All the buildings surrounding the square, which is dominated by the cathedral’s facade, are designed by the architect Vaccarini in an harmonious baroque style. We shall also visit the fish market, Via Crociferi, Collegiata, University, and just at a glace the Bellini Opera House (not entering in). During the tour we’ll taste a Sicilian Cannolo with ricotta cheese. Time at leisure to discovery Catania city center on our own and tipical Sicilian food with shopping opportunity. Our  bus will drive along the coast passing through typical Sicilian villages as Aci Castello, which grew up around a Norman fortress,  Aci Trezza,  a village with maritime tradition, made famous by the novel “I malavoglia” written by Giovanni Verga; a famous Sicilian writer,  and  we shall see the Faraglioni dei Ciclopi rising on the horizon line on the sea. At the end of the visit we shall  drive back to the Ata hotel Naxos Beach.

09.00 depart from Giardini Naxos to Catania

09.45 arrive  in Catania

09.45/11.45 visit of Catania city centre with Cathedral, Fish Market and Via Etnea.

11.45/12.00 Cannolo tasting

12.00/15.30 time at leisure with shopping opportunity

15.30/17.00 leave Catania and depart to Giardini Naxos trough the Ciclop’s coast with stop to see Faraglioni.

17.00 arrive at the hotel