Taormina

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WorldMediterraneanItalySicilyTaormina
Taormina
37°50.42′N, 15°17.37′E Chart icon.png
TaorminaView.jpg
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Taormina

Taormina on the E coast of Sicily is one of the most spectacularly sited towns in the whole of Italy, lying on a steep bluff at the foot of Monte Tauro and offering magnificent views over the sea and the brooding, often snow-capped bulk of Mount Etna 28 kilometres to the SW. Settled by Greeks in the 5th century BC, who built the superbly sited theatre, the town was subsequently occupied by the Romans and became the Sicilian capital under Byzantine rule until its virtual destruction by Saracen invaders at the beginning of the 10th century. Enough of the town’s historic architecture survives, however, along with its spectacular site, to make Taormina a magnet for tourists from all over the world. The town and the beaches lying below it are packed during July and August and it can be a relief to return to peace and quiet on your anchored yacht (there is no harbour at Taormina).

Charts

British Admiralty
1941 - Capo Passero to Capo Colonne
1018 - Approach to Stretto Messina
Italian
918

Weather

The prevailing winds around the Aolian Islands during the summer tend to be from NW or NE, although in calm weather seabreezes can be encountered from any direction blowing onto and between the islands. While infrequent, gales are not unknown during the spring and early summer and careful forward planning is necessary as there are only two harbours which offer adequate shelter (and even then, not in strong southerlies). In winter, the gregale is a strong NE wind that can affect the whole of the island group and blow for several days.

Sources for weather forecasts:

  • There is a continuous (computerised voice) weather forecast on VHF 68 - first in Italian and then followed with an English translation.
  • The same forecast is given in Italian and English on VHF coastal stations following a notification on channel 16
  • Navtex weather forecasts are broadcast from stations at Roma, Cagliari (Sardinia) and Augusta (Sicily)

Passages

List popular passages/routes, timing, etc.

Islands

None.

Communication

Also see World Cruiser's Nets.

Navigation

The town of Taormina is unmistakeable on its high terraces under Monte Tauro. A Saracen castle above the town is also very conspicuous. There is no harbour at Taormina, but in settled weather a yacht may anchor in one of the five anchorages off the town and visit by dinghy. In winds of any strength from S or E the anchorages are uncomfortable and in gales or near-gales untenable.

Berthing

Marinas & Yacht Clubs

Giardini Naxos

Giardini-Naxos bay seen from Castelmola - Italy 2015.JPG
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Giardini-Naxos bay

Marina Yachting

Marina Yachting/wiki/Taormina#Marina_Yachting
Berth icon Marina Yachting [[Taormina#Marina Yachting|Marina Yachting]] 37°49.596'N, 015°16.468'E

Giardini Naxos is a small harbour at the southern end of Taormina Bay.

Moor alongside the central portion of the jetty in 3.0 - 4.0 metres, avoiding the sunken wreck/wiki/Taormina#sunken_wreckDanger icon sunken wreck [[Taormina#sunken wreck|sunken wreck]] lying just off it. There is space here for up to four yachts. Alternatively, moor on one of the four floating pontoons if there is space (June to September only). Depths range from 1.3 metres on the innermost to 4.5 metres on the outermost pontoon. Water and electricity are usually available on the pontoons.

Anchorages

All the anchorages below should be used in settled weather only. If strong winds are forecast from east or south it is wise to head for refuge in Messina or Catania. All the anchorages are very busy with water sports and may be partly buoyed off for swimming in summer. The anchorages are listed from north to south.

Mazzaro Bay

Mazzaro Bay is small cove north of Capo S. Andrea. Beware rocky shoals on the north side of the bay and off the headland on the northern side.

The safest approach is to the landward side of Mazzaro Rock south of the entrance to the cove. Anchor in 4.0 - 6.0 metres on the south side of the bay. The holding is good in sand and rock.

San Andrea Cove

This cove is between Capo S. Andrea and Isola Bella.

Anchor in 5.0 - 8.0 metres on sand and rock. The bottom has some large rocks and a trip line may be advisable.

Isola Bella

The bay between Isola Bella and Capo Taormina. Anchor wherever there is space in 6.0 - 8.0 metres. Reasonable holding in sand and rock.

Taormina Bay

Taormina Bay is the wide bay south of Capo Taormina.

Anchor towards the centre of the bay in 5.0 - 10.0 metres on sand. Good holding. There are also around 20 orange buoys in place from June to September suitable for boats up to 140 ft. Reservations can be made with George Rizzo +39 335 82 24656 Yacht Hotel. While somewhat expensive, they provide security in the swell that can develop and most importantly they provide dinghy service which is valuable as it is difficult to leave a dinghy along the beach.

Yacht Repairs and Services

Marine Stores

None.

Repairs/Yards

None.

Fuel, Water, & Electricity

None, unless you can get on the pontoons at Giardini Naxos.

Things to do Ashore

Tourism

The town of Taormina is a ‘must visit’ site, not least for its wonderfully sited Teatro Greco. In spite of its name a Roman theatre, the natural amphitheatre in which is it built affords superb views down over Taormina and its anchorages and across to Mount Etna. The town itself revolves around one long street, Corso Umberto, which runs between two gates at either end of the old town walls and is lined with upmarket shops and souvenir patisseries. Don’t miss the magnificent view from the terrace at the end. Some interesting Moorish palaces too. The gardens of the Villa Comunale, with their beautiful collection of plants and flowers, are a delight to explore or use as a picnic venue. Finally, there are several Moorish and later Norman palaces along and near Corso Umberto which are worth at least a look or even a visit if they are open.

The Roman theatre at Taormina
Corso Umberto, Taormina
Villa Comunale gardens
Anchorage at Taormina Bay

Grocery & Supply Stores

In Taormina, but a long haul back to the anchorages.

Eateries

All one could wish for in Taormina.

  • Il Barcailo 37:51.4 15:18.1 is in a pretty cove you can dinghy to. Food is excellent.

Internet/WiFi

No.

Laundry

No.

Motorbike & Car Rentals

Rental outlets in Taormina.

Garbage Disposal

Yacht Hotel will dispose of your garbage.

Transportation

List transportation (local and/or international.)

Friends

Contact details of "Cruiser's Friends" that can be contacted for local information or assistance.

Forums

List links to discussion threads on partnering forums. (see link for requirements)

Links

References & Publications

See Italy.

Comments

We welcome users' contributions to the Wiki. Please click on Comments to view other users' comments, add your own personal experiences or recommend any changes to this page following your visit.

Verified by

Date of member's last visit to Taormina and this page's details validated:



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Names: Lighthouse, Athene of Lymington,Monterey


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