Catania & Taormina Tour
Catania and Taormina, two of Italy's most important and flourishing cultural and artistic centers
We offer unique travel experiences in Sicily with personalized and tailor-made tours. Let’s explore Catania & Taormina together, local friendly staff and comfortable vehicles at your disposal.
Catania is an ancient city both medieval and baroque that was often completely destroyed by earthquakes, by the Etna eruptions and by different wars. For this reason here there are very few historical constructions: in the Catania cathedral you can see the ancient ruins of a Roman amphitheatre, of some Roman spas and of some Arab-Norman palaces. This city was completely rebuilt during the XVIII century. Catania is placed at the bottom of the Etna volcano on the Ionic coast. It is an important industrial centre and its territory is characterized by the presence of many citrus plantations. Today the Catania historical centre is crossed by two main streets: the first one is Via dei Crociferi where you can admire ancient palaces and baroque churches, the second one is Via Etnea that ends with a wonderful view of the Etna. Here there is the Catania University that dates back to the 1434 including the Volcanological Institute with its museum and the Astronomy Institute. The Dome Square (Piazza Duomo),this is the main square in Catania being characterized by harmonious XVIII century palaces and by its central monument representing the symbol of the city: the Fountain with the Elephant. This is a Roman monument made up by stone formed by lava. Always in this square you can admire the Cathedral with the Sant’Agata Chapel where there is the very precious Sant’Agata treasure and the Palace of the Elephants (Palazzo degli Elefanti) that is the seat of the Catania municipality. From this square you can arrive to the most important street of this city: Via Etnea where there are wonderful baroque buildings with their lava powder façades and many shops and pastry stores. The Ursino Castle this is the unique medieval construction visible today in Catania. It was built in 1240 to protect this city from the sea but it was also used as a royal residence and as a prison. In 1934 it became the seat of the Civic Museum where you can admire various ancient paintings, sculptures and ceramics.
Time for pictures and drive to Taormina. Taormina has one of the best climates in Europe all through the year. Location of the city is strategically in a good place being close to Etna, Syracuse, Enna and Airport of Catania and close to Savoca and Forza d`Agro where was filmed scenes from famous film “ Godfather”. Upon arrival we will visit the most impressive monument of the city: the Greco-Roman Theatre. It has the finest site of any theatre in the world and one of the most striking monuments of antiquity. We continue our walking tour to the Villa Comunale: the public gardens which are planted with a huge variety of flowering plants and shrubs ranging from the most common to the exotic, your guide will be able to describe you all the botanical curiosity. Taormina is a charming old town with narrow streets, terraces, breathtaking sightseeing’s and architecture full of history. Although Greek- Roman Theatreis not the biggest one in Sicily, it has many vantages. The views that open from there to Etna, mountains and the crystal-clear sea of Giardini – Naxos and Isola Bella makes it one of the most valued sightseeing in all over Europe. Being close to the first Greek colony Giardini Naxos, Taormina has played an interesting roll in the history of the island, that goes back to the 8th century B.C. when ethnic group called Sicels inhabited Sicily, because they found Monte Tauro perfect strategic place to fight against the enemies. When Dionysius raised most important tyrant in Sicily he managed to conquer Taormina and Castelmola in 392 B.C. With Tyrant Andromaco who was the father of a famous historian Timeo, followed a splendour time in the history of Taormenion. Nowadays walking in the streets You can witness the history Yourself by discovering different names of Taormina hotels and streets, realising that citizens have tried to keep the happenings of the place in the memory of visitors. The city of Taormina has been accomplished during different centuries by Sicels, Greeks, Romans, Saracens, French, Spanish and Bourbons. If You are looking for the best overview of all the pearls of Taormina and Giardini- Naxos You will find it in Madonna of the Rocks, the interesting inside the rock build church from 1621, who is known as well as second important saint of the city after St. Pancratius.
CUSTOMIZE YOUR TOUR!
In case none of the above excursions suit your need and you wish to customize something for you, kindly write us specifying: - Your Group Size (and average age); - Your interests; - Port of Call and Cruise schedule. Our local staff will be pleased to work together with you to find something that fit your needs.