Taormina, Pearl of Sicily, Italy | Day Trip, What to See & Travel Tips | wayamaya


Taormina, Pearl of Sicily, Italy | Day Trip, What to See & Travel Tips | wayamaya

Wayamaya travel guide (day trip & what to see) with useful travel tips to:

Taormina, the Pearl of Sicily, Italy

in the Metropolitan City of Messina.



Taormina | a romantic day trip to the Pearl of Sicily

A wonderful view of the town & coastline, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
A wonderful view of the town & coastline, Taormina | Sicily, Italy


Taormina | a must-see town in Sicily

Taormina is undeniably the most charming town in Sicily (certainly the most interestingly located) and simultaneously one of the most picturesque locations in all of Italy. Taormina is not only said to be the top travel destination, but it's absolutely a must-see town for anyone traveling to Sicily. It doesn't matter if you just want to spend a relaxing day in Taormina, take a romantic wedding, stay in Taormina for a week or for the holiday - you don't need a travel itinerary. Taormina is easy to visit!




Taormina | what a diversity

City view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
City view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

Taormina has got the very best of what an Italian city could offer - the ancient Greek amphitheater with a stunning view of Etna volcano, the charming Old Town brimming with history, the amazing island of Isola Bella with its pleasant beach and clear waters, the fabulous Castelmora's mountain views and a lot of unforgettable experiences.
Without exaggeration, we can honestly say that Taormina is and probably will always be a point of reference wherever we go.



Interesting facts about Taormina, the Pearl of Sicily

City view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
City view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

Taormina is located on a high hill (about 250 meters above the sea) just off the Ionian coast. Taormina is perfect for a day trip from Catania or Messina because it's about halfway between those cities (traveling by car is fine unless it's the high season).
Just like Catania, Taormina lies in the shadow of Mount Etna (less than an hour drive), often with a cloud of smoke rising up its snow-covered slopes.

Landscape view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Landscape view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

Travel tip: transport - Taormina can be reached by train directly from Catania, Messina or even Rome. Also, frequent shuttle buses stop at Taormina-Giardini (main train and bus station).
Travel tip: this small town is sometimes so crowded that it might be a tourist trap. Therefore, it's best to avoid visiting Taormina in the summer.

Travel tip: you can take the Godfather tour in Sicily and visit places in Taormina where the movie was filmed.
Travel tip: Taormina is a very safe town and many Sicilians say that's because the mafia spend their holidays there :)



Ancient Greek-Roman Theatre of Taormina

Greek Roman Theatre, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Greek-Roman Theatre, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

From all of Taormina must-see places, Teatro Greco (Teatro Antico di Taormina) is the most fascinating. The historic site is simply spectacular so it's not surprising that it's one of the world’s most popular tourist attractions.

Greek-Roman Theatre, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Greek-Roman Theatre, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

The amphitheater was built in the third century BC in accordance with Greek theatres plans and arrangements, but with Roman bricks. Therefore, it's also known as Greek-Roman Theatre. It might be the second largest of its kind in all of Sicily (behind the Greek Theatre of Siracusa), but it's definitely more famous.



The view par excellence

Greek-Roman Theatre, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Greek-Roman Theatre, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

The ancient amphitheater is on the top of the things to see in Taormina and the views from the ruins are beyond description! This historic site offers everything a tourist needs - stunning views of a small Italian town, the fabulous Ionian seacoast and islands and the spectacular mountains with active Etna volcano as a backdrop.
The theatre is very well preserved and there are often operas and concerts performed.

Book your stay in Taormina (Booking.com)

Landscape view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Landscape view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

Travel tip: each year in June there is a film festival in Taormina and Taormina is famous for its carnival.
Travel tip: entry fees are not expensive but depend on the season and day (ticket prices for adults vary between 8 and 12 € and on some Sundays, you can enter for free).
Travel tip: it's best to check the Etna weather forecast before going for a day trip to Taormina - the day might be clear, but it doesn't mean that there won't be clouds obscuring Etna view from the theatre.



Centro Storico di Taormina

Porta di Mezzo Piazza IX Aprile, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Porta di Mezzo Piazza IX Aprile, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

The charming historic district of Taormina (the Medieval Quarter) is the best place to stay, to eat and to get the full experience of the city. The Old Town is distinguished by a variety of buildings and styles - there are those dating back to Arab times, remembering the rule of the Normans or later Gothic and Baroque buildings.
The top place to visit is a historic square Piazza IX Aprile with Torre dell'Orologio - tower with a clock, which is also a gate (Porta di Mezzo) and San Giuseppe church. Piazza IX Aprile square is also another great viewpoint of Mount Etna and the Ionian coast.



Corso Umberto - the main street of Taormina

Corso Umberto street, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Corso Umberto street, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

The main historic and mostly pedestrianized boulevard of Taormina is almost always crowded but it's very likely that during the entire stay in the city your walking route will barely move away from Corso Umberto. Most of the major attractions are located just a few minutes from this busy thoroughfare.
Corso Umberto stretches for almost 800 meters between two city gates - Porta Messina and Porta Catania and it's absolutely perfect for a longer stroll.
Travel tip: remember to stop in BamBar - world-famous for its Granita dessert.



Wandering through Taormina

Balcony with masks, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Balcony with masks, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

Strolling through Corso Umberto you will mostly come across nice cafes, shops, galleries and best restaurants (especially seafood) but they are all geared towards tourists. Therefore, it's really worth to get off the beaten track (especially in the high season) and walk into uneven streets filled with colorful flowers and other beautiful decorations.
There are a lot of things to do in Taormina and it's best to enjoy the town not only through its majestic views but also by its elegant culture, luxury resort atmosphere and lively lifestyle.
Travel tip: search for unexpected sights.



La Baia dell'Isola Bella di Taormina

Isola Bella beach & island nature reserve, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Isola Bella beach & island nature reserve, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

Isola Bella (Beautiful Island) bay is one of the top sights in Taormina and our favorite highlight there. Both the island (a nature reserve covered with forest) and the small pebble beach deserve special attention. You can see the wonderful view of Isola Bella bay from Teatro Greco or Piazza IX Aprile, but the closer you get, the more beautiful it becomes. 

Isola Bella beach & island nature reserve, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Isola Bella beach & island nature reserve, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

A narrow path connects the island to the mainland beach but it's covered by the water at high tide. Isola Bella is, without doubt, Taormina’s most beautiful beach, although not as beach-goers friendly as Giardini Naxos nearby. It's really hard to describe the atmosphere of Isola Bella and no photo will give it justice - you just need to feel it by yourself.

Isola Bella beach & island nature reserve, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Isola Bella beach & island nature reserve, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

Travel tip: the seaside is accessible by a funicular (10-minute ride cable car) running between Via Pirandello in Taormina just outside of the Porta Messina
Travel tip: you can rent one of the sun umbrellas and beach beds, but there are also free beach areas.



Driving in Taormina

Road view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Road view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

As we mentioned in our 26 useful Sicily travel tips and tricks | Italy travel advice article driving in Sicily is not for the faint-hearted and Taormina is not an exception. It's even worse there because the roads are very narrow (two-way streets are wide enough for one car only) and run steeply uphill. In the summer Taormina is also quite crowded and it can be a nightmare to drive through it. We almost felt sorry for the locals, but considering their road temperament they probably deserve it :)

Balcony landscape view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy | wayamaya
Balcony landscape view, Taormina | Sicily, Italy

Travel tip: there is a large public parking just below the historic center of the town and most parking spaces are for locals only.
Travel tip: if you are a good driver and have no fear of scratching your car then you should definitely drive to the very top of Taormina to see how Taorminians live. There are some open balconies with wonderful views.


If you haven't seen them already, check out wayamaya series of travel blog posts about useful Sicily travel tips, Sicily travel essentials, where to go in Sicily, things to do in Sicily, the best places to visit in Sicily and the top things to see in Sicily, Italy:



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Wayamaya top things to do in Taormina, best places to see in Taormina in one day trip & Taormina travel tips. Greek Theatre, Corso Umberto street, famous BamBar & Isola Bella beach & island in the Pearl of Sicily, Italy #italy #italia #sicily #sicilia #traveltips #taormina #travelphotography #traveldestinations #wayamaya
Taormina, Pearl of Sicily, Italy | Day Trip, What to See & Travel Tips

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