A quick stop in Messina, en route to Taormina was had. My screenplay opens in this city on the 15th August so I just had to be in alignment with it. Being the Feast of the Assumption, town was closed and quiet but nonetheless, I wore white to pay my respects to the Virgin Mary.It was a very spread-out city with the most beautiful harbour and its distinctive citadel. I needed to find the Cathedral but we confused the domes and inadvertently climbed this huge hill to the National Defence building but the views were great anyway and we got our bearings. When we reached the Cathedral Square, a large crowd had gathered to celebrate the feast day and the church tower was playing beautiful music. Inside was the most divine singing that brought me to tears. There wasn’t too much else to see and we may return here as there is a day here on a cruise I’m looking for next year, so we may return to explore further.
On arrival, we unintentionally took a wrong turn, watching other drivers lost and we simultaneously encountered a hailstorm. In shock, we stopped and watched the temperature plummet rapidly. Our wee Fiat 500 couldn’t make it up this hill and our destination time to arrival went from 12 minutes to 33 minutes. Hubby thought it was fun, I found it stressful. We finally arrived, at the Taormina Park Hotel, scoring the last carpark. Boom. See you in three days Fiat.
TripAdvisor had a mixed bag of reviews for this 4 star property but we absolutely loved it and highly recommend it. I’d stay again in a flash. The décor was gorgeous and the staff very friendly. As for the room with a view, it was worth every penny. I could have stayed on our balcony for the whole three days with the glorious view and fabulous pool below.
Taormina is something else and more. Its beauty never ceased to amaze me. Our hotel was really close to these beautiful gardens filled with an aviary and fabulous art. We visited several times and ate our arancini there. The town itself is quite large and you need at least three days to see everything. It’s full of beautifully clad locals and tourists and just buzzes with beautiful boutiques, cafes, restaurants, gelaterias, bakeries etc. It boasts a beautiful ancient outdoor theatre and ruins and the whole city oozes happiness, positivity and beauty. The views of the sea are to die for.
Day three we decided to walk, (yes walk) about 12km down from Taormina to the furtherest point of Giardini Naxos; the beachside village below. To be honest there wasn’t much to see and we wouldn’t rate it, but the walk (down) was great and we’re so proud we did it. The walk up was more challenging and good cardio. Most normal people would take the cable car but that only brings you to the railway station, and it’s still a walk into town from there. As for the railway station, I didn’t take any pics, (not sure why) but it was one of the most beautiful railway stations I’ve ever seen. The building was stunning and there were private waiting rooms with an amazing café, so even that was worth a visit.
I just loved every moment, every second of this place and inhaled the breath-taking views, stunning churches and doorways and alleyways. This is such a must and was the most wonderful way to end our stay. I have the most amazing fond memories of Sicily. It was everything I hoped for and more. Definitely bucket-list material – well isn’t pretty much the whole of Italy.
See you next week where I’ll be in Dubai for our final stop.