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Messina, Sicily, Italy (5/7/18)

We visited Messina, Sicily on the Breeze in 2012. On that visit we toured Taormina and Mt. Etna on one of the best private excursions ever! I'll have to do some research to see what we want to do this trip. Palermo is too far away at 155 miles. What amazed me the most about Sicily, or the area we visited, was how mountainous it is and how they built town and villages right up the sides of the cliffs.

Messina is the 3rd largest city on the island of Sicily, and the 13th largest city in Italy, with a population of more than 238,000 inhabitants in the city proper and about 650,000 in the metropolitan area. It is located near the northeast corner of Sicily, at the Strait of Messina, only 2 miles from the Italian mainland. Messina is steeped in history although it has suffered two major devastating events in recent history: the earthquake of 1908 and Allied bombardments of World War II. Thus, most of the ancient architecture was destroyed.

The picture below shows the port town of Taormina with the Teatro Greco (Greek Theater) in the center. Many think it is a Roman Amphitheater, but they are partially wrong as it was It was built by the Greeks and enlarged by the Romans. It is still in use today for both rock and classical concerts as well as for the Annual Taormina Film Festival.

Taormina Pic

 Our ship will dock in Messina, very close to downtown and about 32 miles from Taormina.


Taormina (Messina) Port Page - Cruise Critic port page for Taormina (Messina.)

Messina Attraction & Activities - Tripadvisor's Things to do in Messina, with ranked lists of attractions and activities.

WhatsInPort - Great info about the port including a webcam (some ports), printable map and ships in port: no ships includes the Horizon are listed.

Frommer's Messina - a well respected travel guide, has their take on Messina, with lots of links to explore.

Lonely Planet's Messina - Lonely Planet's coverage of Messina.

Tours by Locals Messina - Discover Western Sicily's storied past and many charms with a knowledgeable local guide. Experience Messina through the eyes of a local private guide! Browse our tour 'suggestions' - each can be customized just for you.

Viator's Messina Tour Offerings - Viator is a consolidator, meaning that they source tour companies and resell them. What is nice is that you can pay in USD with your credit card before you leave home. I've used them in a few places and was very pleased. If you can find the company they are using to book directly, you can save a bit.

Discover Italy-Messina - The Messina page from

Italy Guides-Messina - Virtual travel to Messina with history, facts and travel tips.

Rick Steve's Best of Sicily - a 24-min, med-def video. They travel through Messina, but it is only a small part of the video.

Messina - A Quick Tour - A 4-min, hi-def video of the sights of Messina with music and brief titles for each site, but no narration.

More to come...

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