Giardini-Naxos (ME)

It was at Cape Schisò that the Greeks, according to Thucydides, established their first foot-hold on Sicily. If Sicily was "the America of the ancient world" this is where the Mayflower landed. The colonists (whose motives may not have been that dissimilar from the first colonists in America) were from Chalcis in Euboea, and the date was around 750BC: they named it Naxos, in honour of the Naxians from the island of Naxos in the Cyclades, who controlled Delos, the sanctuary of Apollo. The ancient town (a pleasant stroll round some unexciting remains) stretches inland from the cape: the modern town of Giardini begins at the other end, across the bay, where a fine Art Deco railway station serves Giardini-Naxos and Taormina.


The station features in Godfather III (cunningly disguised as Bagheria), where Michael Corleone meets his wife Kay, and their children, who are visiting Sicily for Anthony's debut in Cavalleria Rusticana. You can board a train here direct to Milan or Venice. Between the station and the cape is an undistinguished sea-front (always in danger of being washed away in winter), behind which the modern town is set back. It has an ostentatious modern church with electonic bells. It's a good town for food shopping, and restaurants - much cheaper than Taormina. As you walk back towards the cape, the beach begins - it's an excellent one, with fine views to Taotrmina and Castelmola. Note that if you happen to be lying in the shade of an ombrellino, you still have to pay!






Taormina & Castelmola from Giardini-Naxos






Giardini-Naxos from Taormina


Use the table below to find your way around Sicily:
Alcantara gorge

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