A holiday of relaxation, fun, but also culture. It can’t be otherwise for the town Giardini Naxos, which takes its name from the Greek city Naxos, whose inhabitants founded the first colony in Italy just in this land in 756 BC.. For this reason, the city is rich in Greek remains, but also Roman and medieval buildings that you have to visit absolutely during the holidays in this area or in nearby Taormina.
Of great cultural importance, there is the Archaeological Park which extends for about forty hectares and is located between Capo Taormina and Capo Schisò. Inside it, there are archaic sacred buildings flanked by simple structures for housing purposes and furnaces where the clay was cooked; here the remains of the ruined walls that encircled this complex are visible. In this place various findings of fine workmanship were found, such as jewelry or kitchen utensils, which are now preserved and visible at the Archaeological Museum housed in a seventeenth-century fort. The Schisò Castle is also part of this archaeological complex, initially consisting of the only sighting tower and then expanded by a local aristocrat; the castle takes its name from the enchanting beach of Schisò, where the Greek colonists landed and founded the first Greek colonies in Sicily. Don’t miss the Apollo Archegeta Park where you can admire the ruins of an ancient Greek sanctuary. The most important places of worship are the Church of Santa Maria della Raccomandata which contains several works of art; the Church of San Pantaleone, which shows the remains of all the civilizations that have crossed it, from the Roman to the present day; the characteristic and pointed Church of San Giovanni, located on the homonymous beach.
Among the most important monuments to see on the streets of the city is the Naxos door, erected in 2000, which celebrates the twinning between the Sicilian town and the Greek city of Naxos which is located on the Cyclades Islands and is the gateway to entrance to Giardini. The symbol of the city, however, is another, the statue of Nike: iron statue on the waterfront that honors the Greek origins of Giardini Naxos. Further south of the neighborhood there are the remains of Via Romana Consolare Valeria, which is embellished with the statues of Teocles and Silenus and the Olympic temple, built to commemorate a famous Naxos boxer named Tisandros, winner of four Olympic editions of Ancient Greece. After all this itinerary, it’s time for some relaxation to enjoy the magnificent beaches and the crystal clear sea that bathes the city. The most loved beach by tourists is the one of Recanati, surrounded by Mediterranean vegetation and by a numerous luxury hotels, bars and restaurants; another beautiful beach is the one of Schisò, dominated by its medieval castle; finally, we have to mention San Giovanni beach, which is centrally located and is characterized by the presence of its pointed church.Who is looking for a little relaxation under the sun in less crowded beaches, you can move to the small port Saja, characterized by many coves, or we recommend a trip to Isola Bella in Taormina, a few kilometers away, which is a small island with uncontaminated nature connected by the shore through an isthmus of sand that disappears when the tide is high.
To round off a day spent between the places of culture and the most beautiful beaches, you can’t miss a delicious and refreshing granita, to try absolutely along with other specialties of Sicilian cuisine.