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Taormina

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    Taormina

    Hi all,
    Has anyone any experience of getting to Taormina in Sicily from the Messina cruise port?
    Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated
    Tim

    #2
    Originally posted by 1fifthavenue, birmingham View Post
    Hi all,
    Has anyone any experience of getting to Taormina in Sicily from the Messina cruise port?
    Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated
    Tim
    Hi Tim

    DIY or excursion?

    It is doable by public transport.

    Annie

    Comment


      #3
      Hi Annie, would be looking to DIY - I've had a quick google and it looks to be about an hour's train journey, just wondering if anyone has done it and has more info?

      Comment


        #4
        Cant help with DIY sorry, but we would go back if we were in the region, enjoyed an afternoon there, great gelato after walking up to and around the amphitheatre

        John

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          #5
          Originally posted by 1fifthavenue, birmingham View Post
          Hi Annie, would be looking to DIY - I've had a quick google and it looks to be about an hour's train journey, just wondering if anyone has done it and has more info?
          Well I did it 40 years ago - timetables may have changed

          Get from Messina Sicily to Taormina by Train - Tickets, Timetables, Prices

          Annie

          Comment


            #6
            We're more interested in DIY as we're unsure whether we will go, as this holiday will be more about the ship and chilling rather than exploring (with the exception of Capri)... We're at Messina again on our Xmas cruise so may leave it until then, depending how we feel - it does look beautiful, didn't make it in November due to Andy's leg

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              #7
              We went to Taormina from Messina by ships tour. It was an On Your Own one so that we could explore at our own pace and in our own way but had transport from the ship into the town itself.

              We usually prefer diy but having researched getting to Taormina from Messina decided to book the tour, i.e. use the ships transport. That was because the information I had was that the train goes to only to the bottom of a very steep hill some considerable walking distance (uphill) from Taormina town. People had generally advised against it. Having seen the rail area and the climb and distance to Taormina we were very glad that we had taken the tour bus.

              I dont know where the station is in Messina but my guess is it could be some way from the port. Ships dock in the old part of Messina, the newer commercial part of town is a walk or bus ride away.

              In short, its your decision but on a cost benefit basis we decided that the train was too difficult and time consuming to do a day visit to Taormina justice, and we think we made the right call. We were also glad that we did visit Taormina rather than stay in Messina.

              Comment


                #8
                I have done Toarmina several times, by local bus, local taxi and private excursion twice.
                I will dig out my info and report back later, but dont make the mistake we made - local bus, there is an express bus but we missed it and got on the 'normal bus' service it took us that long around the coast with all the stops that by the time we got there we only had 20 mins before the bus went back again. A tale in itself.

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                  #9
                  Messina itself isquite a busy town but with not much of interest apart from typical town shops. You might like to see the ornate clock which has some mechanical gold figures which pop in an out of the clock intime to music at midday. Its a very poplular tourist attraction and easily walked from the ship in 5 maybe 10 minutes.

                  The ship berths literally on the edge of the town along a very busy and deceptive road. Just a warning be very very careful of this road - we have seen two very serious accidents with passengers crossing this road as its very deceiving. It looks like its one way dual carriageway but its not - the traffic on both bits comes both ways!!

                  Taormina. There are only two express buses which go along the autoroute so timing can be an issue (the other local bus takes two hours) A taxi is best option and it takes around 40mins. Its a very pretty little town, you can also visit the ampitheatre. I would make this my choice if you have never been. Its perched high up and has spectacular views down over the bay.

                  I have done two private excursions which I booked myself, one with a group of people I contacted via cruise critic - I ended up booking two eight seater mini buses and again another one with our friends and otthers from cruise critic roll call.

                  Here is an excerpt from my blog/ review:
                  MESSINA: Here I had prearranged a private tour through Sicily with Mario, which started off with a call out on the web to see if anyone wanted to join us. This quickly grew from just 7 of us to 15. They provided two 8 seater mini vans which were needed for our visit to Castelmola as the coaches are not allowed right up to the little town and would have involved a bit of an uphill walk. So first stop was this pretty little town above Taormina, a lovely place with fabulous views back down over the bay. It was quickly decided we would like to stay here for a lunch stop and having already had an hours walk around I had spotted an ideal (if little unusual) place for lunch before we then headed back down to Taormina where we stopped for two hours giving people time to walk around the Greek amphitheatre, the town or take the cable car down to the sea. The Cable car ride was 3 euros each way however the beach immediately infront of the drop off was very disappointing and very overcrowded with no public area. I think a 15 min walk to the right may have found us in a better place. The tour finished with a whistle stop tour of the key sights in Messina and was well worth the 40 euros each. They provided extras such as plentiful cold drinks and bottled water and a tray of local sweet cakes. Anyway back to the lunch, when I said we would take lunch in Castelmola we were marched off to a restaurant despite me having said I wanted to go back to the local bar I had visited earlier. I took one look at the very touristy restaurant and thought not for me and I really did not want a 3 course heavy lunch for 25 euros. The little bar was calling me where they did Brushetta, Pizza, Toasted Sandwiches etc, so I said if anyone wishes to eat here please feel free to do as you please but I am going back to the bar I spotted earlier and having already teased them a little with what I had seen, I was duly followed like the Pied Piper to this bar – now I am not going to tell you what the ‘unusual attraction’ was but you can find out for yourself here by googling turrisibar Castelmola but don’t look if you are easily offended (think man bits). It certainly provided a good laugh and conversation point. Pizza were huge, tasty and only cost 6 or 8 euros. Brushetta or toasted sandwiches cost 4 euros. The menus, chair backs, chair arms, lamp stands, handrails, hooks, just about everywhere you looked were carved in a certain fashion. I think the tour driver was a little miffed as I am sure they were getting some sort of commission from the restaurant but everyone agreed my choice was the best.

                  For anyone visiting Messina and not doing a tour, apart from the ornate church clock which has animated figures at 12 noon (easiliy walkable just 3 or 4 minutes from the ships berth) there is not much else to see as its just a normal town with city shops.

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                    #10
                    Do google the Turrisibar, it really is so much fun, go up the stairs and have a drink on the first floor and make sure you visit the loos too!

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                      #11
                      I vaguely recall a return taxi was around $140 euros but that was at least six years back.

                      My recent tour with Mario was about 4 years ago but again you can google Sciily with Mario and easily find the tour. I didnt have to pay anything up front, but relied on people who had agreed to join us from our roll call turning up!

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                        #12
                        I have just remembered too, the last time we went we walked down to the Public Botanical Gardens. So interesting and created by Lady Florence Treveleyn a Scottish Lady. I would recommend if you have time to walk down to see this with lots of quirky statues and 'tree houses' / buildings. It takes around 7-10 mins to walk down from mid pointish off the main drag.

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                          #13
                          We did it a couple of years ago with no great problem. Train takes about an hour - timetable on Trenitalia, then bus stop outside station. (Buses can be pot luck but we only waited 5 mins) About 10 mins on bus - straight up the hill - don't walk. Stops in a small bus station about 5 mins from centre - uphill. The return times are posted in bus station. We spent about 2 hours there and back in Messina mid afternoon. The tram outside the port passes through station forecourt but is an easy 15 min walk - just follow tram tracks.

                          Note rail station is not called Taormina but Giardini.

                          Cheers

                          Tony B

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                            #14
                            We went on a ship tour couple of years ago. Length of tour "on your own" is sufficent to walk main street, visit amphitheater coffee break and giftshops. Bus stops in very tight car park and u ascend by lift to start of main st. Is it worth doing, definitely. On return walked around messina, but it was a sunday and fairly closed up. Wouldnt try public transport for this visit.

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                              #15
                              I've done Tao twice from Messina.

                              Do not use the 'White Taxis' in the port area unless you like being mugged for more than the agreed price.

                              Cross the main road, walk up any of the side streets to the main square and use one of the official yellow and black taxi's.

                              We agreed a price between four of us which included a two or three hour wait and return. It was a few years ago, but I seem to recall it was about €120.

                              The journey by cab takes 40 minutes each way.............Wilba
                              Wilba

                              Comment


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