Sicilian dolce vita
Do you want to spend a few days away from home? In a lovely and sunny place? Do you like wine tasting and strolling down chic narrow streets? If so…Taormina is the right place for you!
Situated on the beautiful and full of stories island of Sicily, Taormina is perfect for a short, but very romantic summer break. Due to its picturesque location on a cliff overlooking the Ionian sea, the village of Taormina has been the most popular tourist destination in Sicily for years.
Beautifully restored medieval buildings, breathtaking views around every corner and a giddy network of winding streets strewn with antique shops, lively bars and fine restaurants make for a perfect holiday spot.
We went just for a few days simply because we love the Italian culture, the fresh archetypal Mediterranean atmosphere, to amble along its perfectly preserved streets and stairs, to see its Greek-Roman theatre and to admire its dramatic views of Mount Etna – Europe’s largest active volcano.
Taormina is centered around its main thoroughfare – Corso Umberto I. At the beginning of this charming street is perhaps the greatest symbol of Taormina’s long varied history: Palazzo Corvaja. Its architecture is a sublime mix of Arab, Norman and Gothic and includes battlements, mullioned windows and shady courtyards. At the other end is Piazza del Duomo, complete with a 13th Century Cathedral and a Baroque fountain.
One of the loveliest, most whimsical finds in Taormina is the lush gardens at Villa Communale. The gardens are a Mediterranean paradise of palm trees, cacti and delicate flowers, interspersed with Victorian architectural follies – the perfect spot to play hide and seek with the sun on a hot summer day.
Another star of Taormina is Piazza IX Aprile – the town’s main square, built as a terrace with vertiginous views of the Ionian Sea and surrounding villages. Marvel at the rose-tinted exterior of the 17th-century baroque church of San Giuseppe that sits atop a double balustraded staircase, with the towering rock peaks of Castelmola providing the ultimate backdrop. The piazza is an ideal place to sip a glass of Sicilian wine and watch the world go by while seated at one of the many cafés.
Also, Taormina is served by its very own cable car which ferries tourists to and from the seaside resorts down along the coast.
Extensive beaches, rocky coves, tiny islands (such as the famous nature reserve of Isola Bella) and sea stacks abound, making this enchanting coastline a must see among travel aficionados.
The rest, as they say, is storia.