A tiny coastal town in Sicily, Castelmola offers panoramic views over the Mediterranean Sea and Mt. Etna. Neighboring Taormina is 670 feet above sea level while Castelmola is higher up at 1,700 feet above sea level. Adventurous travelers hike uphill from Taormina to Castelmola to see its churches, visit a 13th century castle, and to taste local almond wine.
Travel to the Greek Theater in Taormina is popular to take in views of the Sicilian coastline. For views at an even higher vantage point, visit the town of Castelmola. Staircases and an uphill path connect the two villages. Castelmola is home to restaurants and cafes plus several small churches. Some tour itineraries exploring this section of the coast from Catania include a stop at Castelmola.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Castelmola is a must-see attraction for outdoor adventure travelers seeking a scenic hike.
- Wear your hiking boots as the staircases and paths that connect Taormina to Castelmola are steep.
- Taste the local vino di mandorla or almond wine; served cold, it’s a popular refreshment for recovering after the hike.
How to Get There
The hike from Taormina to Castelmola is under three kilometers and takes approximately one hour to complete (walking downhill is faster). It takes about 15 minutes to drive between the towns. Castelmola is located on the coast a one-hour drive north from Catania. Most visitors arrive by hiking, car, or as part of a guided tour.
When to Get There
Peak season in this region of Italy is during the summer months. Avoid the crowds by traveling during the spring or fall months, which offer milder temperatures that are more pleasant for hiking between Taormina and Castelmola.
This is one of Sicily’s most dramatic vantage points, with views of the volcano Mt. Etna, the Bay of Giardini-Naxos, and the Cape of San Alessio. On a clear day look out for the strait of Messina and the Calabrian coast, on the mainland of Italy.
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- Taormina Cathedral (Duomo) and Piazza del Duomo
- Taormina Piazza Duomo
- Santa Caterina Church (Chiesa di Santa Caterina)
- Taormina Roman Odeon
- Taormina Old Town (Centro Storico)
- Corso Umberto I
- Piazza IX Aprile
- Corvaja Palace (Palazzo Corvaja)
- Taormina Greek Theatre (Teatro Greco)
- Taormina Cable Car (Funivia)
- Villa Comunale
- Mazzarò Beach (Lido Mazzarò)
- Taormina Cruise Port (Taormina Terminal Crociere)
- Alcantara Gorges (Gole dell'Alcantara)
- Circumetnea Railway (Ferrovia Circumetnea)