What more can I say about today? Lots of swimming in the beautiful clear water, book reading and Relaxing. We’ve been craving quality beach time for ages – Leo more so than me, because he didn’t come to Australia last year. I’m not so happy about his sunburn though! Why do men think they’re bigger than sunscreen?!
The Internet connection is stronger today, so I uploaded the photos to yesterday’s post if you fancy having a look at a few more.
Wishing you a wonderful day.
3 thoughts on “July 30: Taormina”
Your sojourn in Sicily put me in mind of the fact that I was there about this time last year. So just in case you didn’t read it the first time – or loved it so much that you want to read it again – following is the extract from my diary on my time in Taormina.
Messina – Scilly. Messina is a relatively ‘new’ city in that much of it was destroyed in 1908 by an earthquake and then it was relatively heavily bombed in WW2. Took a tour to Taormina which is an old walled city. Trip took about 45 minutes from Messina around some very winding coastline. The Messina Straits are the area between Scilly and mainland Italy – at its closest there is about 2 miles distance between the two and about 19 miles distance at the furthest point. The coastline is quite rugged with only a small amount of flat land before you are in the hills. The coastline is heavily built in a very long strip as a result. Most of the building has occurred since about 1960 and is all very similar in construction (and nothing of any interest). On our trip we went through about 30 tunnels – so dealing with the mountains is a real issue. We saw Mt Etna in the distance which is always smoking and apparently has been erupting/effusing a bit in the last month although the lava is only visible at night and not during the day.
Taormina is just beautiful – it is at the top a mountain/hill with spectacular views out to the sea and surrounding countryside including Mt Etna. History goes back to BC times. It is now essentially a tourist town with lots of shops of all sorts and descriptions. Three lovely plazas with lots of cafes with those spectacular views. There is a Greco-Roman theatre which we visited. Originally built by the Greeks who built it to put on plays. They apparently preferred simple design and built the theatre with columns and then open space at the back of the stage so that patrons could sit and watch the plays (comedy and tragedies) and see Mt Etna and surrounding landscape at the back. The Romans came along and enclosed the whole theatre and then used it as an amphitheatre – lions and gladiators. Certainly made me think that I preferred the Greeks to the Romans in more ways than one! The theatre, like much of the ancient Italian buildings fell in to disrepair and then was essentially used as a ‘free building materials’ site with much of the theatre demolished through this process. There has been a rebuilding of some parts of the theatre to give you an idea of what it was like which is good – combination of old materials that were still there and some new materials to ‘fill in the gaps’. The theatre is heavily used for a whole variety of concerts and events – many local performances and many international ones – Three Tenors; Sting; Elton John etc etc. During summer it is set up with rows of plastic chairs for patrons – they really look horrible but I guess it makes the space usable – although I have to say I think they could do better in terms of aesthetics.
That was a brilliant wrap of the area Judy, thank you! It was even better the second time – being there and reading it!
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