Taormina Treats: Sicily’s Most Beautiful Town

Taormina is a cultural melting pot of Sicily’s best. From a history rich in Greek Mythology to family fun friendly traditions, all visitors are welcomed with open arms to explore this true Italian gem. Perched at the top of Monte Tauro on the foot of Mount Etna, historical treasures, sensational seaside cocktails, and gorgeous gardens await. In this blog, actress Catherine Tyldesley shares her thoughts on her family’s recent trip to “postcard picture perfect” Taormina.  

“It’s not often you arrive somewhere in the pitch black and know straight away you’re going to be in love with the place when the sun rises.” - Catherine Tyldesley

Taormina

Taormina holidays are full to the brim with culture and history. The ancient town is built on fabulous historic treasures, waiting to be explored, including the Palazzo Corvaja and Greek-Roman Theatre.  

For nature lovers, the Villa Comunale di Taormina (gardens) are the ideal place for leisurely walks for the whole family. The lush, manicured gardens offer a dream-like escape with miniature buildings and water ornaments, a little like a doll's house. There is also a large children's play area next door for little ones to do some exploring of their own.  

Making your way through the town, you may be reminded of the series The White Lotus, where Taormina was the backdrop. The noticeable ceramics designed in the classic Majolica glazed style with delicate baroque patterns had Catherine Tyldesley pestering her husband, Tom, to see how many they could take home. Just be sure to save time for the local delights and high-end fashion available in town. From the traditional delectable olives to limoncello that will remind you of your sensational stay with every sip, leave enough room to take home some goodies.  

With Mount Etna within sight, there is a constant reminder of her great beauty throughout your stay. This mammoth mountain is a true Taormina treat, adding to the historic nature filled with myths and legends.  

As Catherine and her family explored the surroundings over a few days, beaches became the top activity. Giardini Naxos, only twenty minutes from Taormina, was at the top of the list with some gorgeous sand beaches. Sun loungers, towels, and umbrellas in hand, this is summer beach living at its finest. The historic sites here are also fantastic, with some churches dating back to the late 1600s, giving an untouched feel to the area.  

One of the top activities in Taormina is visiting Teatro Antico di Taormina. This amphitheatre in the heart of the town takes you back in time to Greek performances, where voices and cheers filled this large space so many years ago. It is the second largest theatre in Sicily, so one can only imagine the grand performances during Roman times when games and gladiator battles tore through the amphitheatre. This space holds something truly special, a positive eeriness that makes you feel you’re part of something bigger, something Catherine, Tom, and their son Alfie also commented on.  

If you’re anything like Catherine, food can make or break a holiday. Let’s just say the food in Taormina is unparalleled. The local seafood, particularly the swordfish, is an absolute must-try on your Sicilian holiday. After all, Swordfish has been the love of Sicilian fishermen for more than two thousand years. They celebrate the catch of a swordfish with a blessing to St. Mark, making the sign of the cross four times on the head of the fish – a tradition handed down for centuries.
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Hotel Villa Belvedere

Situated only five minutes from town, Hotel Villa Belvedere puts you in the ideal spot for exploring the historic town of Taormina on foot. From the moment you arrive, the staff welcome you with open arms in true Sicilian family fashion.  

For family holidays, the Villa Rigamonti at Hotel Villa Belvedere is the perfect accommodation. The villa sleeps five and features a small kitchen, a balcony, and air conditioning, much appreciated after a full day of glorious Italian sunshine at the onsite swimming pool. Here, views of the ocean as you awaken will have you grabbing your beach bag, ready for a day of relaxation and exploration.  

Foodies, the buffet breakfast served daily in the breakfast room offers sensational delights, including homemade pastries, sweets, croissants, and Sicilian cannoli, to name a few. Come lunchtime, the à la carte options are delectable, with local specialities on the menu.  

The pool snack bar overlooks the beautiful bay and clear blue swimming pool. Here, you can toast your holiday in style with a range of snacks from the delicious Sicilian buffet spread. But if you’re looking for something more relaxed, the bar at the front of the hotel invites you to sit back in the reading lounge while the younger guests tackle the gaming lounge with free WiFi.  

Diving into the pool after a day of exploring is the ideal way to spend an afternoon while lazing on the loungers under the shade of the umbrellas. If you want to get in on the beach action, Hotel Villa Belvedere offers a shuttle that will have you at Taormina's beaches within ten minutes, sunbeds and umbrellas included.

Discover the Real Italy

Are you ready to explore Taormina like Catherine Tyldesley? To truly experience the best of what Sicily offers, Citalia’s Palermo, Cefalù and Taormina multi-centre holiday invites you on an 11-day getaway that you will never forget. From the ancient Greek amphitheatre and fine sandy beaches to sensational local street food and views of the mammoth Mount Etna, this multi-centre offers something for everyone.  

At Citalia we have 95 years’ experience in tailormade Italian holidays, and our Italy Experts are on hand to help you plan your perfect Italy itinerary. 
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