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We are on the Train bound for Taormina. It isn't very full, so we take a window seat where we can view the Ocean. We pass through suburbs, some of them not very good, gradually, we leave them behind and start passing countryside.
The Trainline, hugs the side of the Ocean most of the way, and we do have nice views, but nothing spectacular. The country looks dry and thirsty!
On the way back, we view the inland, and that wasn't much either!
Just a form of transport from A to B.
Written Oct 18, 2011
This Church had quite an impressive look! Inside, I thought was worth a quick visit, as there was a nice Marble Font, and some other decorative pieces.
It may be a little daunting going in, as either side of the entrance door, were two Beggar's wanting money.
Written Oct 17, 2011
Address: 12 Piazza Canterina Valverde
I suggest that you walk to the square in front of Messina cathedral and watch the action with the moving figurines finishing with the sounding of a cock starting at 12.00pm sharp.This would be something interesting even for the kids.
Updated Jun 2, 2009
One place to see a smoldering volcano and sometimes a very active one is on Sicily.
Mount Etna reigns supreme as the mover and shaker of Sicily. You can go to the base of the latest lave flows and even a restaurant and tourist shops will await you. Standing 10,991 feet high and considered the most documented volcano for eruptions in the world, Mount Etna is worth a visit, if no lava is flowing at the time of your visit.
To see some wonderful air photos of the Island of Sicily and the erupting Mount Etna, the written word is in Italian but the pictures are phenomenal, go to the website of the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Volcanologia-Sezione di Catania by clicking the highlighted name or go to website listed below.
Updated Aug 2, 2008
Address: South side of Sicily
The Campanile has been much reworked but maintains its civic centrality and Norman design topped by 4 pinnacles, a central spire, and clocks.Wishing to make a strong religious and community statement, in 1933 Bishop Paino commissioned a Strasbourg firm to build an astronomical clock and automata on selected religious themes with tasteful architectural setting by F. Valenti in the oft rebuilt Tower. You can get a pictur pamphlet in the Church giving the details and symbolisms of the show which occurs only at Noon(daily). Do not forget to study the complex clock on the South wall of the tower.The sound effects are rather quaint for the 21C (the rooster sounds like its neck is being wrung!) and the Ave Maria must have been the background of a Caruso recording. The Tomb of Bishop Paino is prominently displayed in the Duomo. The Duimo, Campanile plus 2 August Religious and Folk processions and festivals have become fused into Messina's pride of survival and are vividly remembered by the transplanted natives I encounter in my home town!
Written Mar 22, 2005
Address: Piazza del Duomo--next to the duomo.
After its 2nd destruction in WWII, the determined Messinians rebuilt the Duomo in the Romanesque style used by Roger II in 1160, incorporating as many original fragments as they could find and using original plans. An example of this are the horizontal bands along thr facade of carving and tilework. Be sure to examine them and try to figure them out!The doorway are 15-16C, and are Gothic in type. The restoration inside is also striking: the restored columns and wood ceiling and a silver 17C high altar with a 15C baldachin and a reproduced revered Virgin and Child backed by a restored Christ mosaic in the apse. Other treasures include a restored Montorsoli work, an Antonello Gagini (the most talented of the clan)"John the Baptist". Visit the interior before 12 so you can be in position for the Noon Campanile Show.
Written Mar 22, 2005
Messina is an elongated "sickle-shaped" city and the museum is in its northern section, We found parking among the residents north of the museum.The muuseum is in a beautifully restoed building with fine grounds and a courtyard that have scattered archeological pieces decoratively placed. The art collection is locally derived witha few superb items by such as Antonello (of course!) and Caravaggio (who hid out here) Regrettably they did not permit camera of any sort and did not have books or cards for sale.We expected to hve a minimal visit but it turned out thaat thebeautiful people (i.e. rich) of Messina were having a gala and they stayed open for them(we were not dressed for the occasion but we looked foreign and elderly so-- (the attendants snickered to us about it). Since I have no picture I include a view of the sickle coastline of the city(The museum is one block inland).
Updated Mar 21, 2005
Address: Up the Viale della Liberta 3km from the Duomo.
Bernard Berenson calls this the finest fountain in Italy. Finished in1547, it is Montorsoli's masterpiece. He was a Florentine and a disciple of Michelangelo. He cut his eye-teeth doing some of the figures and the dirty work on the Medici Chapels with the Master. The fountain employs all types of Michelangelesque devices without Mannerism, a restraint the headman abandoned.There is an explanatory sign nearby. Read some of it and go back and forth looking and then seeing. Unfortunately I could find no illustrated booklet on it. It is hard to decipher the videos I took but the work is very fine. Montorsoli then did much of the Neptune Fountain but damage and other less talented additions make it hard to tell what is his. But it is big.
Written Mar 21, 2005
Address: Piazza del Duomo
From June to August/September you might want to spend some fresh nights assisting at theatre/music/opera performances in Taormina. There is for any kind of taste, many in the charming environment of the Greek Theatre.
Suggestion: get tickets very in advance
Written May 5, 2004
The church of the "Annunziata dei Catalani" stands on one of the most historically important sites of the Straits. Nearby, there was once the Byzantine shipyard, guarded by the fortress of Castellamare. The church was built between 1150 and 1200 on the remains of a pagan temple dedicated to Neptune. It is an interesting example of how various architectural styles were added to a late Byzantine construction typical of those built by the Basilian Order of monks. The blind loggias and the play of colour created by the exterior stonework, along with the two-tone arches of the interior and the elongated layout of the church, are all indications of Islamic and Byzantine influence, and also reflect contemporary architecture on mainland Italy.The original lenght of the naves was almost double their present length: they were shortened and the facade was redone following a flood in the Middle Ages, wich caused the front section of the church to collapse. The church has been known by the name "Catalani" ever since the 16th century, when the senate of Messina gave it to the powerful guild of the Catalan merchants. The guild made it their headquarters and placed the coats of arms of Catalonia on the main entrance. The great difference in height between the ground level of the church and that of the surrounding streets and buildings is due to the piles of rubble caused by the eartquake of 1908, which were later levelled for reconstruction.
Updated Feb 13, 2004
1 Review and 0 Opinions I have not been a guest here, but comments from people I know are positive. I visited the place...