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Taormina Italy Sicily Travel Sicilian Panorama

Taormina

"The pearl of the Mediterranean Sea"

Best time to go  |  How long  |  Getting to & around  |  Where to stay  |  Day trips

The scenic Sicilian town of Taormina is so worth seeing that Trafalgar includes it as a free day on many of their multi-day tours. Whether you visit Sicily’s legendary resort town on your own, or as part of a group, it is worth it!

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Taormina, your next holiday destination!

On Sicily’s east coast is the hilltop town of Taormina. It is situated close to Mount Etna, an active volcano with trails to its top.

Rock Elephant Sea Taormina Sicily Italy Travel

How many days

If you’re going to explore the traces of The Godfather and nearby Baroque architecture, plan three days in Taormina. Otherwise, two days will be enough to see all the highlights in Taormina. 

Is it just me, or does this rock look like an elephant!?

Taormina Sicily Balloons Italy Cafe Resort Holiday

Best time to go

The best months to go to Taormina are March through June and October because of the minimal crowds, numerous festivals, and comfortable weather. Usually, they have plenty of festivals in the days before Easter. The beaches and resorts can be hot and crowded during July and August. The busiest (and most expensive) month is September.

10 best things to do in Taormina

Taormina Theater Theatre Greek Sicily Ruins

Main attraction

Visitors from across the world flock to set foot in its ancient Greek-Roman theatre, Teatro Antico di Taormina.

Isola Bella

Cliffs that descend towards the water near the theater create coves with sandy beaches. The little island and nature reserve of Isola Bella is connected by a short section of beach.

Italy Sicily Italian Taormina Sicilian Market

Explore and adore

Take a stroll through its perfectly preserved medieval streets.

Taormina Sicily Shopping Shops Tourism Tourist

Corso Umberto

Early evening passeggiatas or nice walks can be enjoyed along the main Corso Umberto, which is closed to public traffic and is mostly open to police cars and delivery trucks.

Main Plaza Taormina Sicily Italy

Piazza 9 Aprile

About halfway down Corso Umberto is Piazza 9 Aprile with its black and white checker tiled floor made from Iarva. The 18th-century Saint Joseph church is on one side, while the Santa Agostino church is on the other (S. Giuseppe).

Sea Taormina Sky Panorama Day Wave

Swimming in Taormina

Smooth sand on the beach and no large stones in the water, what more could I ask for? 

The Godfather

Part of the blockbuster movie, The Godfather, was filmed about twenty minutes’ drive from Taormina in Forza D’Agrò and Savoca.

Food Experiences

From wine tasting to food walks and cooking experiences, Taormina has a surprisingly wide range of food experiences for such a small town.

Mount Etna

Even if you’re not a fan of history it is an amazing feeling to be amidst the third-century ruins with spectacular views over the Ionian Sea and Mount Etna, the highest active volcano in Europe.

Taormina Porcelain Plate Hand Painted Decoration Ceramics

Siracusa – Ortigia & Noto

On a full-day journey, discover Syracuse, Ortigia, and Noto. Discover historic ruins, UNESCO-listed baroque architecture, and breathtaking vistas. In Ortigia, sample and purchase Sicilian goods.

Taormina Sicily Stairs Street Sidestreet Colorful Art Outdoors

Travel Tip(s)

Take note!

Walking in Taormina always entails climbing and descending steps.

Getting to and around

Sicily Life City Taormina Home House Living Iron
Italy Sicily Naxos Taormina Beach Sun Vacations

Getting around in Taormina

Like I said, it’s a hilltop town so getting to the beach means you hop into a cable car that runs about every fifteen minutes during high season.

Alternatively, put on your walking shoes and walk down to the beach. It’s a beautifully scenic walk of around 35 minutes – if you don’t stop to take photos. Loved it!

Also, most of the resorts offer a free shuttle to the beach. (Check before making your reservations). 

Do you need a car?

This is the one cost you won’t have when you visit Taormina because from the one end to the other end of the town it takes around 15 minutes of walking! Let alone that there is no parking.

Catania airport runway

Nearest Airport

Catania–Fontanarossa Airport (IATA: CTA, ICAO: LICC), also known as Vincenzo Bellini Airport, is an international airport in Sicily’s second largest city, Catania. The airport that is named after Vincenzo Bellini (a famous opera composer, born in Catania) is 65 km from Taormina.

Flights to Catania, from...

Trains to Taormina from the airport

There are regular trains from Vincenzo Bellini Airport to Taormina. One of the primary stops on the Messina-Catania train line is Taormina-Giardini Naxos housed in a magnificent 19th-century Art Nouveau building.

By car

Either rent a car or book an airport transfer. If you self-drive, take the A18 highway and exit at the Taormina sign. It will take you about an hour.

Best Places to stay in Taormina

Where to stay in Taormina

Most of the resorts have exquisite views over Mount Etna and the beach below. Like San Domenico Palace with its beautiful terraces. It is the most popular hotel around.

Stay in Taormina with a private beach

La Plage Resort is the resort to book if you want to stay away from the town center, and on a beachfront. It comes with very good ratings.

Best resorts in Taormina Sicily Villa Zen Taormina

Stay outside the old town

Villa Zen Toarmina is about twenty minutes on foot to the old town, with plenty of steps to climb.  When you book, check if they’ve added aircons to the rooms. That is of course if you’re like me and enjoy the coolness of the AC.

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Day trips near Taormina

42 km to Catania, Italy.

171 km to Palermo, Italy.

345 km to Naples, Italy.

Day trips near Taormina