Idyllic, cliff top Taormina, with its wonderfully restored medieval treasures, spectacular view across to Etna, and visiting 'beautiful people', had been Sicily's most popular summer destination since the 18th Century, when it was part of the Grand Tour. Even now, the best places to stay in Taormina evoke memories of this period with plenty of period features and classic luxury.
As well as the recommendations from Goethe, Gustav Klimt, Oscar Wilde and Federico Fellini, Taormina also boasts winding, but beautiful streets, complete with bars, restaurants and boutiques. Which might be what sold Taormina to Elizabeth Taylor, who also lends it her recommendation.
In addition to the beauty and life of modern Taormina, this town boasts some pretty spectacular ruins. And lovely cove-like beaches which you can reach by cable car. This is a very civilised sort of a resort town.
Busy with Italians enjoying their own backyard in July and August, Taormina is better visited outside the Italian school holidays.
Our pick of the best places to stay in Taormina are all luxurious options, ideally situated for enjoying this fascinating town and its stunning views. For those looking for a self catering apartment in the city, we recommend the selection with our online partner, Booking.com.
Founded in the 4th Century BC, Taormina grew, and grew wealthy, under the Greeks, developing a citrus farming culture, then fell into obscurity under the Normans. A real microcosm of the whole island, Taormina has some of the best of Sicily's sights:
The beach is about 2kms below the town, and the coastline is dotted with seaside resorts in both directions. In between long sandy stretches, broken up by rocky coves. Off the coast is a scattering of pretty, but rocky islands, just to add to the postcard-perfection of your surroundings. And to make for an interesting day trip on the water.
Don't forget that it's very busy here during the peak summer months, so if you want to guarantee a room in one of the best places to stay in Taormina in July or August, you'll need to plan well ahead and book early.
Taormina's romance is well documented, this was, after all, the place where D.H. Lawrence penned his 1928 novel 'Lady Chatterly's Lover'. Our choice of the best places to stay in Taormina for a spot of romance include:
Stunning views over the Ionian sea from a cliff top. Romantic rooms and suites have delicate four poster beds and linens. Gorgeous pool and good restaurant. A great choice for romantic break in a film star setting.
A beautiful luxury villa on the cliff tops over the Ionian sea. Sumptuous rooms, suites and apartments all with private terraces. Rooms have stone floors, delicate watercolours and rich fabrics. Fantastic restaurant and pool. Utterly romantic, but still very accommodating for families or groups.
Elegant, historic Grande dame of Taomina, magnificent views, luxurious rooms and suites and michelin starred restaurant. 5 star luxury created from a 14th century monastery. Antiques and original features balance perfectly with 21st century comforts and top notch service.
La dolce vita in a romantic Sicilian villa overlooking the bay. Sensational views, frescoed walls, Italianate furnishings, rose-clad terraces, candlelit dinners, and a spa. Not far from the beach. The perfect choice for a honeymoon. Full of character and utterly romantic.
Timeless Sicilian elegance and classic luxury. Panoramic views from the romantic terraces, bar, restaurant and private balconies. Rooms and suites in creams with elegant furniture, and some with jacuzzis. A perfect spot for a honeymoon, romantic break or wedding.
Fantastic Five Star luxury, Michelin star restaurant, and contemporary Italian interior design. Seamless rooms and suites with stand alone bathtubs, private balconies, and ethereal linens. Wonderful pool and spa area. Romantic, gourmet, and close to the beach.
Spectacular grand villa with views to match. Sumptuous, elegant rooms and suites that ooze refined glamour. Floor to ceiling windows, parquet floors, designer furniture, rich wallpapers, private jacuzzis. Film star terraces, excellent restaurant and swimming pool. Indulgent romance.