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Your Travel Guide to Taormina, Sicily

History: Nestled on the eastern coast of Sicily, Taormina is a captivating town that boasts a rich history dating back to ancient times. Originally settled by the Greeks in the 4th century BC, Taormina has been influenced by various cultures, including the Romans, Byzantines, Arabs, and Normans. Its most iconic landmark, the ancient Greco-Roman Theater, showcases the town's historical significance and offers breathtaking views of Mount Etna and the Ionian Sea.


Taormina

Transportation: Taormina is accessible by train, bus, and car. The nearest major airport is Catania Fontanarossa Airport (CTA), approximately an hour's drive away. *Beware the Catania airport is a nightmare* Once in Taormina, the town itself is best explored on foot, as its narrow streets and charming alleys can be challenging for larger vehicles. Uber is not reliable and neither are taxis, so be prepared to walk most of the city and go up and down many flights of stairs if you want to go to Taormina Mare.


Safety: Taormina is generally a safe destination for travelers. However, it's wise to be cautious of pickpocketing, especially in crowded areas. It's recommended to keep your belongings secure and be mindful of your surroundings.


Ocean

Neighborhood Guide: Taormina is divided into two main areas: the historic center and the coastal area. The historic center is characterized by its medieval architecture, bustling markets, and stunning views. The coastal area, known as Taormina Mare, offers beautiful beaches and a more relaxed atmosphere.


Must-See Places:

  1. Ancient Theater of Taormina: Explore the remarkably preserved Greco-Roman theater, offering panoramic views and hosting various events and performances.

  2. Corso Umberto: The main street of Taormina is lined with shops, cafes, and historic sites.

  3. Isola Bella: A charming nature reserve and pebble beach accessible by a narrow path.

  4. Taormina Cable Car: Take a scenic ride to the beach from the town center, enjoying breathtaking vistas along the way.

  5. Palazzo Corvaja: A medieval palace showcasing local history and culture.

Food: Sicilian cuisine is renowned for its bold flavors and diverse influences. In Taormina, indulge in local specialties such as arancini (check out our recipe HERE), pasta with seafood, cannoli (sweet pastries), and granita (a semi-frozen dessert). Don't miss the opportunity to savor freshly caught seafood at seaside restaurants.


Taormina

Nearby Attractions:

  1. Mount Etna: Europe's tallest active volcano offers hiking and breathtaking vistas. Guided tours are available.

  2. Giardini Naxos: A nearby coastal town with beaches, restaurants, and archaeological sites.

  3. Castelmola: A charming hilltop village overlooking Taormina, known for its stunning panoramas.

Language: The official language is Sicilian, and while English is widely spoken in tourist areas, it's helpful to learn a few basic Italian phrases to enhance your experience.


Tipping Customs: Tipping in restaurants is customary, typically rounding up the bill or leaving a 5-10% tip. It's also common to leave small change for services like taxi rides and hotel staff.


Currency: The currency used in Taormina and Italy is the Euro (EUR).


Fancy Beach Town

Is the Water Safe to Drink? While tap water is generally considered safe to drink in Taormina, many travelers prefer to drink bottled water to avoid any potential discomfort.


Number of Days Needed to Explore the City: A stay of 2-3 days is usually sufficient to explore the main attractions of Taormina. However, if you wish to visit nearby attractions and fully immerse yourself in the local culture, consider extending your stay to a week.


Fancy Beach Resort

Average Cost of a Hotel Room: The average cost of a hotel room in Taormina can vary widely depending on the type of accommodation and the time of year. On average, you can expect to pay around €200-300 per night for mid-range accommodations. There are a few very high scale, luxury hotels in Taormina, including The San Domenico Palace a Four Seasons Hotel which is the hotel from the show, White Lotus.


Average Cost of a Beer: The cost of a beer in Taormina can range from €3 to €6, depending on the establishment. Prices may be higher in touristy areas and upscale bars.

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