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Taormina on horseback
Discovering Taormina on Horseback, discovering the beauty and surroundings of one of the most elegant cities in Italy on horseback is an emotion that we at Club Cavallo Italia offer to those who, like us, love horses and their elegance.
Guy de Maupassant in La Vie errante, 1885, wrote: If someone were to spend a single day in Sicily and asked: “What should I see?” I would answer without hesitation: “Taormina“.
First we know Taormina
Before discovering Taormina on horseback, let’s get to know Taormina, which overlooks the Ionian Sea, in Sicily, and its territory, which Goethe has called the “strip of paradise on earth” for horseback riding while admiring breathtaking views during which you can taste the typical cuisine and find relaxation by the sea, from Capo Sant’Andrea to Capo Taormina.
Taormina is located on a rocky plateau at about 200 meters above sea level, in an extraordinary position, a balcony overlooking the Ionian Sea, facing Etna in a unique scenario for variety and contrasts, also a sign of the different peoples who occupied it during of the centuries, and is a territory also rich in beautiful beaches such as Mazzarò, Lido di Taormina and Isola Bella.
The history of Taormina
The first name of Taormina was Naxos, founded by the Greeks around 735 BC, and lived in peace until Dionysius I, the tyrant of Syracuse, wanted to extend its territory up to here, making the inhabitants who settled on Mount Tauro escape , together with the Sicilians.
Thus Tauromenion became Taormina.
Subsequently the city allied with Rome and, at the fall of the Roman Empire, it became the capital of Byzantine Sicily.
It was then conquered by the Arabs, destroyed and then reconquered and, in 1079, conquered by the Normans who gave it a long period of prosperity.
Until the unification of Italy, Taormina was occupied by different peoples, such as the Spanish, French and Bourbons, and the signs of these different cultures are clearly seen in its architecture.
The climate of Taormina
Without excesses of heat in summer and cold in winter, the climate of Taormina is typically Mediterranean and the best times to visit Taormina on Horseback and its magnificent territory are certainly spring and autumn but to enjoy the magnificent beaches and crystal clear sea we naturally recommend the summer, hot but dry.
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Where to sleep
The tourist reception lives up to the world fame of Taormina, with offers ranging from B&B to 5-star luxury hotels.
We can recommend the Hotel Villa Carlotta, the Hotel Villa Belvedere and the Hotel Villa Ducale but the offer is really wide and you will have no difficulty finding the right hotel for you.
What to eat
Especially in the south, Italian cuisine is unrivaled, which in Taormina is influenced by the different dominations it has undergone in past centuries.
In the dishes you can taste the flavors of Norman, Arab, Spanish and French are mixed.
For example the famous Arancini di Riso (Rice Balls) are of Arab origin while the Normans are responsible for the different fish dishes such as stockfish and cod.
Taormina is a fairly expensive city, especially if you want to eat fresh fish but there are still ways to save without giving up to quality.
Some restaurants, such as Sapori di Mare Taormina and Trattoria Don Ciccio, offer abundant and tasty dishes at fairly low prices.
In desserts the choice is vast: ranging from the famous cassata to cannoli, from granita to coffee and other different flavors, including those based on almonds, and it is practically impossible not to start the day in Sicily with the “granita câ panna e câ brioche “.
Getting to Taormina
To get to Taormina by car you need to embark on the ferries to Villa San Giovanni for Messina (they leave every 20 minutes) and then take the highway towards Catania and exit at Taormina while, if you decide for the ship, a ferry leaves from Genoa which arrives in Palermo, from where you can reach Taormina.
By plane the nearest airport is Catania Fontanarossa, about 45 km away, which you can travel by bus, with pick-up service (by booking at least a week before) or by taxi.
Getting around in Taormina
The village of Taormina is closed to cars.
You must therefore leave your car it outside the historic center, small and full of wonders, and we recommend that you use public pay parkings, but if you choose the Mazzarò Parking you must use the cable car to reach the center, a cable car that you can also use for go down to the sea, as an alternative to the bus service.
What to visit in Taormina
One more moment before discovering Taormina on horseback and its surroundings because Taormina is one of the most famous and appreciated places in the world.
It is a village nestled between sea and land of a rare beauty that fears no comparison and which tells its long history, the result of an intense interweaving of different cultures and you must plan a visit to Isola Bella, an islet of just a kilometer rich of vegetation and joined to the mainland by a thin strip of land south of Taormina, in the inlet after the promontory of Sant’Andrea.
Among the most important churches in Taormina, the Duomo, or the Cathedral dedicated to San Nicola di Bari built around 1400 that you can admire in the historic village of the town.
Another important baroque church is the Church of San Pancrazio, bishop and patron of Taormina, dating back to the eighteenth century and built on the remains of a Greek temple dedicated to Jupiter Serapis while the buildings bear witness to the glorious past of Taormina.
Do not miss the famous Hellenistic Greek Theater, completely rebuilt by the Romans, it is the second largest Sicilian theater after that of Syracuse and is home to numerous events.
Finally we recommend a walk in the Villa Comunale of Taormina, a wonderful park where you can relax surrounded by nature.
Taormina on Horseback
Where to go
The panorama is the real protagonist for Taormina on horseback, where it will be fantastic to get lost between sea, sky and earth and it is impossible to miss Etna with the perennial plume of smoke that dominates it to remember its majesty.
To discover Taormina on horseback, there are many routes to the most suggestive corners such as, for example, the aforementioned Isola Bella, also known as “the Pearl of the Mediterranean”.
To see is also the beautiful Bay of Mazzarò with one of the most famous beaches in the world with crystal clear waters about ten minutes from the center of Taormina.
To choose among the many routes, the ones you love the most we suggest you contact the equestrian centers of Taormina (you can find them on the FISE Sicily Regional Committee website) who will be happy to show you their proposals.
If, on the other hand, you are traveling with your horse, read our advice on how to travel with the horse here. Thanks.
Taormina on Horseback. What to do… after
After discovering the treasures of the city and its territory on horseback, and to fully experience its international spirit, the Ancient Theater of Taormina is the perfect setting with many concerts by national and international artists during the summer but also the Christmas period is truly suggestive, among stalls, music and culture with the Trappitello Christmas market and the Living Nativity scene with the exciting nativity scene in the Parish of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
Corso Umberto I ° is a succession of boutiques and shops, ranging from high fashion to casual, jewelers interspersed with panoramic points on the sea and Mount Etna while the whole historic center is full of craft souvenir shops and ceramic products typical.
The nightlife in Taormina is refined and elegant, in every corner there are clubs and cocktail bars and in the heart of the historic center, in Garibaldi square, throughout the day until late afternoon you can enjoy excellent aperitifs while, late at night , DJ sets and exclusive events are held.
Paladini square and IX Aprile square offer many lounge bars, while Corso Umberto I is full of bars that open onto the street, with outdoor tables and in summer you can frenzy to the sound of music until the first light of dawn in the many beach club on the sea.
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On horseback also in…
After visiting Taormina on horseback, we recommend you visit Normandy on Horseback, the land of horses in France.
Normandy is waiting for you
Finally, after Taormina on horseback, we invite you to discover how our Collection of Jewels was born in the precious Ceramics of Vietri, naturally dedicated to horses and their elegance.
Before leaving for your travels, we invite you to our Bags Collection dedicated, like all our collections, to horses and their elegance, made in Italy by the hands of our master leather makers in real and soft Italian leather, to … smell, the ideal companion for your travels.
Thanks for the time you spent with us, we hope to see you soon in Taormina on Horseback and, if you liked our advice, send the link of this page to those who will appreciate them and we will be delighted.
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See you soon and thanks again.