The pearl of the Mediterranean: things to do in Taormina

Tania ScipillitiArt and Museums, Castelmola, Etna, Food and Wine, History and Culture, Messina, Savoca, Sea and Nature, TaorminaLeave a Comment

Dive into wild shopping or enjoy one of the most beautiful walks in Europe in total relax? Things to do in Taormina to discover its undisputed charm.

Things to do in Taormina Sicily

This short article aims to suggest some things to do in Taormina.

It is to be intended as a sort of guide to the possible tourist that intends to visit Taormina and that is curious to know, in advance of his visit, the things to do in Taormina Italy.

Taormina sites to see

Surely, the best thing to do in Taormina is to book a Tour Taormina or Taormina private tours to appreciate better the place. Taormina is a must-see for those people who want to do excursions in Sicily. In particular, Taormina tours offer to the tourists a perfect combination of nature and architecture, being geographically located in a hilly area of ​​incomparable beauty that lends itself very well as a cradle and frame of noble palaces, private villas, squares, churches and valuable works of art in general.

The Sicilian "capital" of fashion and tourism is situated in a rocky terrain that stands in an elevation of 206 meters above sea level, to which the town that lies on the Tauro Mount (since its shape is similar to that one of a bull, hence the name of Taormina), descends sinuously until it meets the coastal villages of Letojanni, Mazzarò and Giardini Naxos, whose beautiful beaches are a popular destination for Italians and foreign visitors that visit our island in summertime. These bays have private and public beaches overlooking rock formations that have curious shapes and which emerge from the limpid and temperate waters of the Sicilian Ionian coast. Among these rocks stands out the most famous Isola Bella: you cannot say that you have visited and left Taormina without doing one of the best day trips from Taormina to Isola Bella Taormina, it cannot miss in your list of things to do in Taormina!

In fact, from the bay of Giardini Naxos, the first Greek colony in Sicily dating back to 734 BC, it is possible to leave for Isola Bella excursions on boat, tours that last about two hours in which sea and photography lovers  can enjoy themselves immortalising the crystalline waters of the Ionian Sea and the caves, rocks and bays that precede the small island of Isola Bella Taormina, that is connected to the land by a line of sand that appears and disappears depending on the tide. In the nineteenth century Isola Bella was owned by the English noblewoman Lady Florence Trevelyan who took care of its flora, and now is a nature reserve and museum.

Taormina what to do in one day

If you have asked yourself what to do in Taormina if you have just a short time, it may be useful to you to know that it is possible to visit Taormina also in one day, because even if the things to do in Taormina are many, you can also enjoy them in some hours. Your Taormina walking tour will begin or end by passing through one of the two gateways to the city, respectively Porta Messina and Porta Catania.

Among the things to see in Taormina, in the middle of the two gates you will find the main boulevard Corso Umberto I, and in its sides, you can see its typical alleys. In Taormina coexist harmoniously the past and present thanks to the presence of the typical Taormina shops.

Taormina shops are mainly high fashion boutiques and restaurants for refined palates in which you can taste the local specialities, all located within ancient buildings. It will come naturally to you, as one of the things to do in Taormina, to stop to see its colourful windows!

In fact, if at first glance shopping, cuisine and art, which are the main things to do in Taormina, seem to you irreconcilable activities, then you will discover that in Taormina go even arm in arm! This is why this stunning place meets the taste of visitors with very different interests.

Taormina must see

Due to its geographical position, set between the green hills and the blue of its sea, Taormina is also well-known as the "pearl of the Mediterranean".

The Visit of Taormina is pleasant in every period of the year, also because the things to do in Taormina change following the course of the seasons: in spring the climate is mild and the vegetation is lush; in summertime it reaches its height, and is chosen not only as a tourist destination by hikers and cruisers, but also as the place of Taormina star tour in which VIPs spend their time thanks to the organisation of national and international events that are inscribed in the "Taormina Arte" calendar, which hosts a series of events concerning theatre, dance, music and, last but not least cinema, with its "Taormina FilmFest", that is an international film festival that takes place in the evocative location of the Teatro Antico. There’s plenty things to do in Taormina, but the fans of the VIP usually don’t care about this and prefer to look for its favourite VIP walking through Taormina to ask for a selfie!; autumn is probably the ideal season for those who do not like chaos: the weather is still favourable and you can enjoy the place with greater peace of mind; finally, Christmas  time dresses Taormina of lights and colours that give a magical atmosphere to an already enchanting place. Don’t forget that, in every case, you can book Taormina private tours with Discover Messina!

It should also be noted that in May 2017 Taormina was chosen by the major world powers as the location to host the G7 summit.

Taormina things to see

Among the things to see in Taormina we point out:

  • Palazzo Corvaja, that houses the Sicilian Museum of Popular Arts and Traditions
  • Piazza IX Aprile, in which there are the churches of San Giuseppe and of Sant’Agostino, and that is an authentic belvedere surrounded by prickly pears. From here, you can enjoy the view of Mount Etna, the highest volcano in Europe still active and the coast of Taormina
  • Villa Comunale, a public garden just a few steps from the town centre in which take a relaxing break

But the major architectonic work and the most beautiful place to see in Taormina is undoubtedly the ancient theatre: it could not be in your list of things to do in Taormina! This is a place of unique beauty situated on a natural slope with a panoramic view.

The things to see in Taormina are not just these ones. There are also the church of S. Caterina d'Alessandria, built on the remains of the ancient Roman Odeon, the Roman naumachia, Duomo Square with the fountain of Minotaur symbol of the city, Ciampoli Palace and numerous other building of the ancient aristocracy and convents now converted into hotels.

Day trips from Taormina

Even if the things to do in Taormina are many and varied, the Visit  of Taormina is just one of the many tours Sicily available. For a more complete overview, it would be good not just to visit Taormina but also its surroundings, probably less renowned but no for this reason less beautiful.

We suggest just some options for day trips from Taormina:

Not far from Taormina there are the places chosen by Francis Ford Coppola to shoot some important scenes of the Godfather. The Godfather tour includes a visit to the villages of Forza d'Agrò and Savoca.

You can also reach Castelmola, a small village on a rock just above Taormina, where you can enjoy a breath-taking view.

All three villages are included in the circuit of the most beautiful villages in Italy.

It takes about 60 km from Taormina to reach Messina and its strait. Do not miss the visit of the Duomo bell tower at noon which, since 1933, offers every day to a crowded square, a show unique in the world thanks to its complex mechanism and the largest astronomical clock in the world. To see in Messina this and much more: let yourself be seduced by the beauty of its multiple panoramic views over the Strait, whose narrowest point with the mainland is only 3km. Here, you will find pleasant climate and tasty food, all in a city whose history is marked by the earthquake of 1908, event that left deep cracks in the buildings and in the souls of the citizens, from which, however, filters sunlight and the desire of rebirth and redemption.

Tour Taormina Etna: From Taormina, you can also leave for Mount Etna that stands at an altitude of 3300 meters above sea level. For our ancestors it was the seat of the gods, and since the time began it passionates volcanologists, scholars and tourists. There, you can walk on the extinct craters or take the cable car to reach almost the top of the highest volcano in Europe.