Isola Bella Nature Reserve
Considered to be the “Pearl of the Ionian”, due to its
wild but unspoilt beauty, in spite of Man’s presence, Isola
Bella is protected by the WWF and was recently declared a Nature
Reserve. It is a magical place that cannot be missed if you are
This small island can be reached from the town along long groups
of staircases and lanes, crossing over the National Strada Statale,
down Monte Tauro 200 meters until you reach sea level where the
island is connected to the land by a thin strip of sand.
The best period to visit this area is from the beginning of spring
to the first days of autumn. There are several sea birds that live
in this place: Herring Gulls, Kingfishers, Peregrine Falcons, Cormorants,
and Grey Herons. The luxuriant vegetation on Isola Bella is a fantastic
mixture of Mediterranean scrub and rare exotic plants, imported
by its original owner, the eccentric Miss Travelyan.
The sea beds surrounding the island are also amazing from Nature’s
point of view: if you have mask, snorkel and flippers, even the
most inexpert explorer can look at a spectacle that will stay impressed
on your minds forever. This stretch of sea is home to multitudes
of organisms, various species of seaweed, multi-colored fish, all
sizes of crustaceans and other living beings.
How to get to Isola Bella from Taormina
In Via Pirandello you can take the municipal cableway to Mazzarò.
Once there, turn right onto the National Strada Statale: the entrance
to the Reserve is about 200 meters away.
If you want to walk, cross Via Pirandello onto the viewing point
“Isola Bella”: from there, there is a path made of stairs
and lanes that take you right up to the Reserve entrance.
Alcantara River Park
Alcantara River Park, an extremely attractive place about 25 km
Taormina, is famous for all its Gole, or gorges, fashioned into
the rock by geological phenomena whose origins are lost in the mists
of time. All this took place when, long ago, a small volcano erupted
and spurted out a mass of lava that formed a huge crack. In the
part of its path where there was most clay, the lava sunk to a depth
that formed two large black columns of basalt that were 50 meters
high. This crack is now run along by the River Alcantara, whose
name comes from the Arabic Al Qantarah. A visit to the Gole dell’Alcantara,
walking along a small stretch of the river bed, is a truly unique
experience, but it can only be done from May to September, when
the water level lowers. If you want to try out this adventure, we
advise you to wear “river boots” (like the ones with
braces used by river fishermen), as a safety measure and to stop
you from getting cold: the river water is freezing even in summer!
At other times of the year, trips there only go as far as the entrance
to the gorges. The sight before you is amazing: the gorges, so black
and prismatic, create wonderful reflections of light and shadows
as soon as the sun hits their surface.
This is a tiny, picturesque village that is about 500 meters above
sea level, with a fantastic view looking out over the sea.
This is an ancient town. Castelmola was built to defend Taormina
from the attacks of potential invaders. There is still an atmosphere
of “old times” that transmits a feeling of temporarily
going back in time. This feeling is made even stronger by the fact
that no cars can be driven in Castelmola.
The cathedral dedicated to San Nicolò of Bari and the seventeenth
century church built to honor San Giorgio are very characteristic.
Castelmola is famous for its vino alle mandorle and for the medieval
<< General information Taormina
all properties to rent in Taormina