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How to Spend 2 Days in Messina

How to Spend 2 Days in Messina

Sicily’s busiest port, Messina is a popular jumping-off point for visiting sights farther down the Ionian coast. Spend a day taking in the city’s architecture, art, and street food before adventuring farther south to admire the ancient ruins in Taormina and the smoldering peak of Mount Etna. Here’s how to spend two days in Messina.

Day 1: Messina

**Morning:**Dedicate the morning to exploring the old town, rebuilt after a devastating earthquake and World War II bombing. A handful of historic buildings survive, so join a walking or Segway tour to visit the 12th-century Church of the Santissima Annunziata dei Catalani, Norman cathedral flanked by its spectacular bell tower and astronomical clock, and Fountain of Orion. 

**Afternoon:**As the temperatures start to soar, take refuge in the halls of the Regional Museum, hung with an impressive collection of masterpieces by the Messina school and other Renaissance and baroque artists. Highlights include works by the 15th-century painter Antonello da Messina, a local treasure, and the inimitable Caravaggio.

**Night:**Unwind after a day of art and architecture with a food tour, discovering Sicilian street food during a guided stroll through the historic center. True foodies can opt for a home-style cooking class led by a local cook for a hands-on lesson in preparing traditional Sicilian dishes. Cap off the evening with a festive dinner to sample what you’ve created in the kitchen.

Day 2: Taormina and Mt. Etna

**Morning:**One of the most head-turning hill towns in Sicily, perched high above the coast, Taormina is a delightful mix of the truly ancient and simply historic. Tour the old town with a guide to fully appreciate its dazzling Greek Theater, lively Corso Umberto I, and panoramic Piazza IX Aprile. 

**Afternoon:**Many day trips to Taormina make a brief but scenic stop at the tiny hill town of Castelmola, with a crumbling castle above and postcard-ready views of the coastline below. Alternatively, head to Isola Bella, below Taormina, a dramatic, rocky outcrop along the coast—it’s a photographer’s paradise.

**Night:**Take advantage of the golden late-afternoon light to summit Mt. Etna, the largest active volcano in Europe, which rumbles and belches on the horizon above Sicily’s eastern coastline. Explore the lava flows and craters on foot, and then stop for a tour and tasting at one of the wineries located on its slopes.  

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9 Tours and Activities | All Messina Tours

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2-Hour Messina Walking Tour

2-Hour Messina Walking Tour

star-4.5
Explore the historic city of Messina on a walking tour with a local guide that’s a great overview and orientation for first-time visitors. Learn about Sicily’s Arab-Norman heritage as you make your way from Cathedral Square to a series of churches, landmarks, and artwork, and hear stories from Messina’s fascinating past. Multiple departures are available throughout the day.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$31.21
From
$31.21
Taking safety measures

Messina City and Coast Tour

Messina City and Coast Tour

star-4.5
Discover northeast Sicily on a 6-hour tour of Messina and the Ionian coast. Hear informative commentary about the region from your guide and take in attractions such as Santuario della Madonna di Montalto, the Church of the Annunziata dei Catalani, and the Cape of Peloro.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$68.65
From
$68.65
Taking safety measures

Private Tour to Taormina and Castelmola from Messina

Private Tour to Taormina and Castelmola from Messina

star-5
Explore the beautiful seaside resort towns of Taormina and Castelmola with a private tour from Messina. See Taormina's ancient Greek Theater overlooking the beach. Gaze at the gorgeous Giardini Naxos Bay to understand why this area has been a popular resort for a very long time. Continue to nearby Castelmola to browse its small boutiques before returning back to Messina.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$205.93
From
$205.93

Messina Segway Tour

Messina Segway Tour

star-4.5
Explore Messina’s top attractions on a 3-hour Segway tour. Led by a local guide, glide along the city's boulevards, passing the Messina Duomo, the Church of Santissima Annunziata dei Catalani and more. As you travel through each vibrant city square, learn how the area changed in the aftermath of the 1908 earthquake. After three hours of history, culture and sightseeing, your tour will conclude at its original departure point.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$120.46
Price varies by group size
From
$120.46
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Taormina Pizza Making Class- From Messina

Taormina Pizza Making Class- From Messina

star-5
Discover one of Sicily’s most beautiful cities—and enjoy a hands-on introduction to traditional Italian cuisine—on this full-day Taormina tour. Depart in the morning from your Messina hotel or port, and travel in a comfortable, air-conditioned minivan. Upon arrival in Taormina, head to a traditional restaurant for a cooking class. Learn how to make pizza under the watchful eyes of a chef, and then enjoy your meal alongside some local wine. Finally, stroll the Corso Umberto, and discover Taormina’s history, before returning to Messina.
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  • 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$123.55
From
$123.55
Taking safety measures

Private cooking class at a Cesarina's home with tasting in Messina

Private cooking class at a Cesarina's home with tasting in Messina

star-5
Learn the secrets of Sicilian cuisine—and cook with a Messina local in their own home—when you sign up for this immersive, private cooking class. Pick between morning and afternoon class times to best suit your schedule. You’ll be cooking alongside a Cesarina; a local ambassador of Italian cuisine that has been carefully vetted and is part of a national network. Enjoy an authentic experience, prepare several gourmet dishes, and sit down to enjoy your meal (with local wine on the side).
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$176.44
From
$176.44

Messina: private walking tour with a local guide

Messina: private walking tour with a local guide

Explore Sicily's finest cathedrals, fountains, monuments, and more with a private walking tour of Messina. With this tour, you’ll discover the fascinating history of the city of Messina, which was almost completely rebuilt after a devastating earthquake in 1908 and mass bombings during World War II. You’ll visit top sights such as the Fountain of Orion and Messina Cathedral, and get insider tips on the best way to spend the rest of your trip.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$328.54
per group
From
$328.54
per group
Taking safety measures

Etna Wine And Taormina From Messina

Etna Wine And Taormina From Messina

star-4
Combine a Mt. Etna sightseeing trip with a visit to an esteemed local winery on this seamless, full-day tour. Meet in the morning at your Messina hotel, and set off via air-conditioned minivan; with a maximum of 15 attendees, this tour provides a personalized experience. Travel to Mt. Etna—Europe’s most active volcano—where you’ll have time to explore the Silvestri Craters. Then, transfer to a winery, where you can sample the volcanic wines as well as local nibbles. Finally, return to Messina.
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  • 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$123.55
From
$123.55
Taking safety measures

Messina Food Experience

Messina Food Experience

Food holds a high place in traditional Sicilian society, but knowing where to find the freshest flavors takes local knowledge. On this foodie’s walking tour, leave the map behind and follow your guide through coastal Messina. Explore bustling markets and hidden back streets, and sample some of the speciality treats Sicilians love. Along the way, learn of the role food plays in Sicily’s cultural heritage.
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  • 2 to 3 hours
From
$109.51
Price varies by group size
From
$109.51
Price varies by group size