Friday, December 7, 2012

Taormina...A British Holiday Destination

Talk to most people from Britain about Sicily and they will ask, "Did you go to Taormina?"  When I've introduced my grandparents to some of the local Italians that work on base they always state, "Did you take them to Taormina?"

Taormina is the jewel of Sicily.  Taormina is clean.  Not like around here.
This is very common around here.  (photo courtesy of Donald  Curran)
This is Taormina.

Quite a difference.  

We went to Taormina on Sunday.  We left the house around 10 am and arrived there around 10:50 am. There is a toll road and that was easy enough.  The toll was 1.70 euro each way. Someone had recommended a great parking garage right by town.  We found it easily, Porta Catania, and ended up paying 7 euro for 3 hours of parking. (take your ticket and pay on your way back to the car when you are finished).  The garage has free restrooms and you take an elevator to the top floor and you are on the level of the town. The other garage requires you to ride a bus up to the town.  

We walked through the gate of Taormia.  There is a gate on each end of town.   We saw this tiny church on the edge of town and the presepe located inside.  

The tiny church

I think this one is Jesus and Mary Magdalene, but I'm not positive.

A presepe.  The entire town. It was behind glass.

We walked all the way down the main street of town and stopped into a souvenir shop to get a few postcards.  We saw the three big churches and the plaza with a fountain.  

A fountain with a church in the plaza.

Norah pointing out the water in the fountain.

Details above one of the churches
This plaza with this church had benches.  We sat down for a bit and Norah pulled out her princesses to play.  A little Italian girl came up and started talking to Norah and wanting to play with her. Norah wasn't really sure what to do.  The girls mom pulled out a princess from her purse and the two started to play together.  It was a beautiful moment.  They went over the names of the princesses.  It really was a nice cultural exchange. 

While we were sitting there the church bells began to ring.  I'm not sure what it was signaling, but we heard them from two different churches at two separate times.

Church in a plaza with benches  

We walked all the way through town and went to the Greek Theater.  They still use the theater for concerts and film festivals.  

Papaw at the Greek theater

After walking all over the theater we made our way back through town to find a lovely little place to get some gelato.  Gelato is so yummy!

Nana and Norah enjoying some strawberry gelato.

Cody got cookie gelato that came with a cookie spoon! 

After a wonderful day of sight seeing we returned home for some rest and relaxation.  On the way back to the car we spotted a pharmacy with this lovely bad boy machine out side.  Pretty awesome if you are in need of some prophylactics and the pharmacy is closed!  

Super convenient condom machine!

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