The stories of my life on a little island in the middle of the Mediterranean sea ... and my occasional adventures beyond these shores.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Taormina, Ti Amo

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It is an uphill walk from the bus station to Taormina’s main thoroughfare, Corso Umberto 1. I was a bit apprehensive at first. The place was thronged with tourists and it seemed as if each nation was vying to be the loudest, with shrill voices in all languages ringing in my ears. But  I vowed I would not let the din spoil my day. There was so much more to enjoy.
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So I shut my ears and opened my eyes as I set out to discover this town’s charms. If, at first glance, the surroundings seemed to be too perfect and, perhaps, a tad contrived the natural beauty of the place won me over by the time I drank  my first, bitter espresso.
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The main traffic-less street meanders through the heart of Taormina while some of the narrowest streets that I have ever seen in my life (and I come from an island where narrow streets are the norm) rise perpendicularly on one side and fall steeply on the other.
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Gorgeous shops and boutiques line the streets (more on that some other time), balconies are bright with flowers tumbling out of terracotta pots and the surrounding hills are green with a profusion of vegetation that reminds me of the tropics rather than the Mediterranean.
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I think I was a bit bewildered by all the beauty but I was not quite prepared for what came next. The winding road suddenly opened into a square, Piazza IX Aprile, with the white-washed church of San Giuseppe to the right, on the left,the sheer drop to the beaches below and, straight ahead, the smoking plume of Mt Etna. It is an unforgettable sight.
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We stopped for lunch at La Cisterna del Moro (the Well of the Moor).
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The menu was simple but the view was stunning. With sated appetites we emerged once more into the sunlight. The streets had quieted down – people were either eating or taking a siesta. It was a perfect time to explore.
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There is so much to write about: the small and simple 13th century duomo of San Nicola,
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the Baroque fountain,
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the charming hotel in what  used to be the monastery of San Domenico,
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the beautiful houses with picture-perfect gardens …
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But, you see, it would take too long. So we’ll return here some other time. I promise …
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For those that were wondering, ti amo is Italian for I love you.
Recommended reading:
A House In Sicily

14 comments:

  1. So, so incredibly beautiful. I would love to actually see everything there in person. Thank you for sharing the wonderful photos. I love your photo tours of your part of the world.

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  2. What a lovely, lovely place.

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  3. Hope to visit this wonderful place some day.
    I love your picture reportage.
    Sue.

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  4. Oh Loree, breathless photos, stunning place, and most of all I love those flowers in pots. The balcony with flowers is absolutely incredible.

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  5. Gorgeous photos! I find myself longing to visit Sicily & Italy lately...maybe its the amazing photos I've seen from many lately of all the green and beautiful views? I wish Malta was more this way :o)

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  6. OMG ! you wake up such old memories with your pictures ! I have been in Taormina in 1964 and 65, I was engaged to an Italian whose family lived in Messina ! There were no tourists at all in these years and I couldn't go out alone because the people had never seen such a tall blond, they all wanted to touch me, not to talk about the men ! I remember I had a "body guard" who was an old aunt, all dressed in black and armed with an ombrella she hit everybody on the head who wanted to come to close to me ! I couldn't even sit in their garden because they climbed up the wall to see me. I tell you I felt like an animal in a zoo !

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  7. very refreshing photos. this place is so relaxing and beautiful, and you got me with the bitter espresso :).

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  8. Such wonderful views you captured with your camera, Loree! Taormina is a lovely place!

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  9. Catching up on your posts, Loree. I adore your photographs! The Jubilee post was great fun.

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  10. Loree - your pictures of Taormina are simply gorgeous - the water is such a brilliant blue. What artistry I see in your photos. You certainly know how to capture the essence of a place. Thank you for taking me on a tour with you. God Bless.

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  11. i remember this town from a trip long ago. thank you for reminding me how beautiful it is.

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  12. The narrow streets, old buildings and gardens are delightful, looks like a wonderful place to visit!

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  14. Thanks for taking us on tour to this wonderful place, I loved all the pictures especially the one of the balcony with the terracotta pots. I am trying to catch up on your posts, (have been rather busy here) and I'm glad I did!
    God bless you for taking the time to share,
    Doreen

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Thanks for stopping by. I read and appreciate every one of your comments. I will do my best to reply whenever I can.

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