idden in a secret square rising on top of the heart of town and only minutes walk to the main square. A simple exterior surrounded by a very quiet, charming square with sunlight streaming in and away from the crowds of visitors. The Church of Varò comes as a massive construction without a well-defined style.
In the main facade there is the portal for which the threshold, jambs and lintel are made with Taormina stone; the portal is surmounted by a window with sill and jambs in stone of Syracuse.
In the back of the church there is an ancient crypt, perhaps from the early years of Christianity.
If the crypt really dates from that time, we must consider the Church of Varò as the oldest church in Taormina. In the back there is a small bell tower, built in the 15th century.
This is one of the more elaborate interiors of all the churches and is very impressive with white stucco, gilding and beautiful paintings and chandeliers. Dating from the middle ages, this church rises in a very quiet part of town just 1 minute from everything and is reached via one of the most charming sets of stairs off the Corso Umberto.
Highly recommended - the simple exterior does not prepare the visitor for the exquisite and elaborate interior, making it ideal for a wedding.
It is a secret, not easily discovered unless you have precise indications.
n the very heart of Taormina, on the main street. Built on the site of the Roman Odeon ancient exterior, very simple and elegant.
Elaborate with baroque touches, white stucco, gilding and paintings. Well lit interior. This church is just minutes from the ancient Greek theatre and dates back to the Augustinian age and the remains are visible inside the church. Modifications and additions were made in the following centuries creating what is the present structure.
One of the most popular churches of Taormina for Catholic weddings.
The exact construction date of this church, consecrated to St. Catherine of Alexandria in Egypt and located in the centre of the city opposite Palazzo Corvaja, is not known. It is thought to date back to 1663, the year engraved on the tablet of the ossuary found outside the church and now located in the wall beside the staircase which leads to the crypt.
The facade of the sacristy is decorated with two small windows ornated with sea shells, the same decoration used on the architrave of its door.
As it was built on the ruins of the Odeon, the remains of which can be seen behind the church, part of the orchestra and scene were destroyed.
The scene of the Odeon is believed to have been created using the colonnade of a pre-existent Greek temple dedicated to Aphrodite.
MADONNA DELLA ROCCA
ust a 10 minute drive from the centre of Taormina, up a winding road situated on the summit of Monte Tauro, the Madonna della Rocca Sanctuary has one of the most beautiful and evocative panoramas in Taormina.
Rising at 348 metres above sea level, the origins of the sanctuary dates back to the 12th century, during the Norman domination.
Rebuilt and restored in 1640, after it had been abandoned, exploiting the shape of the rock that forms a grotto at that point, the Sanctuary continues to exist and to be one of the favourite destinations for weddings and for all tourists.
The architecture is modest and rustic in style, with a low rocky ceiling making it resemble a cave.
Through a secret passage leading to a small courtyard visitors encounter a large stone crucifix that can be admired from the town below.
The views from here are even more breathtaking and couples can take advantage for having photos taken.
The crucifix was built in 1930, it is illuminated at night so that it can be seen from many angles in Taormina. It is a place of pilgrimage where every third Sunday of September the Madonna della Rocca is celebrated.
Reach the mount where the church stands, you will enjoy an extraordinay view of the city.
ust outside the main arch of Porta Messina. Enclosed in a beautiful Roman cloister, a very ancient church. The outside reminds one of Roman antiquities. Elaborate, well lit with ancient frescoes, stuccoes and dark woods.
A rich interior, hundreds of years old.
The construction, in Baroque style, was built on the ruins of a Greek temple dedicated to Jupiter Serapide. Parts of the temple's cell can still be seen in the southern wall of the church.
The entire church is secluded and inside a wonderful cloister dating over 600 years. A unique setting for photos and weddings. Only minutes walking from the heart of Taormina.
The church, dedicated to the bishop and patron of Taormina St. Pancras, dates back to the eighteenth century. On 9 July the town celebrates S. Pancrazio. During the feast, the “Vara” of S. Pancrazio is carried in procession through the Taormina streets.
Its main portal is very interesting with jambs and architraves in Taormina stone; two Ionian columns decorate each side of the portal.
Inside the church the intermediate floor with the organ can be seen above this portal.
A low railing in wrought iron separates the rest of the church from the main altar which is lavishly decorated with polichrome marble slabs and an Ionian column on each side.
There are eight angels on the altar, four on each side, and a bust of God giving his blessing.
his church, dedicated to St. Joseph, is located next to the Clock Tower and faces out onto Piazza IX Aprile.
A double staircase, with a balustrade of Syracuse stone, leads up to the entrance. The gable façade in the baroque style, has a large central portal that leads into the church, and two small side portals.
The monumental main portal is made with local Taormina marble of different varieties, jambs and architrave in white, grey and pink and other decorative pieces. On the right side of the church stands the great bell tower, the lower part of which is made from large blocks of Taormina stone.
The interior, decorated with stucco work of the eighteenth century reproducing floral motifs and heads of winged angels, has a single nave with a transept that has at its center a dome where you can admire a fresco depicting St. John Bosco child between the Madonna and Jesus. The main altar of the church is also made with Taormina marble.
Under the tabernacle there is an inlay of the Madonna rising above the souls in Purgatory. Behind the altar, in a niche of the apse there is the statue of Maria Ausiliatrice. Above the main altar, on the right, there is in a niche the statue of St. John Bosco with two boys, while to the left there is a statue of St. Joseph. Beside the altar of St. Joseph, there is another niche which houses the wood and glass urn with the statue of Dead Christ which is carried in procession on Good Friday.