Castelmola, a small and silent village for your honeymoon

castelmola italyDear traveller, if you are thinking about a destination in Italy in which you can spend your honeymoon, I suggest that you visit Castelmola. That is a small village placed over Taormina and the bay of Giardini Naxos, in the Eastern side of Sicily. Castelmola is a beautiful, charming and quiet town founded in the Middle Age. Its name comes from just the main castle towering over the town and built just in the epoch I mentioned a few seconds before. To tell the truth, Castelmola is a town you can visit anytime and at any seasons, even though, it is better you visit it during spring or autumn. I visited Castelmola a few years ago, just to celebrate the first anniversary of my wedding day.

It was in the second half of September and I and my husband decided to visit this wonderful town to spend a day in this sleepy and quiet Sicilian village which allows to admire the Etna volcano, the sea and the fabulous Taormina at the same time. Taormina and the sea of the bay in Giardini Naxos lie just under Castelmola, while the Etna volcano is in front of the town. For this reason Castelmola is also called the natural balcony over Taormina and is considered a destination to see the best places of Sicily through a unique tour. Since Taormina and Giardini Naxos are very crowded in summer, I suggest that you visit Castelmola in the mild seasons, because you’ll waste your time if you arrive in Castelmola in summer, especially among June, July and August. Surely, you need to know more about Castelmola, above all how to reach it and where to find accommodations. As usual, I’ve provided you all the best tourist information to visit this Sicilian village.

Tourist information

Castelmola is at 501 meters above the sea level. Its surface is 16.83 square kms. The town has about 1100 inhabitants and it is near Taormina, Giardini Naxos, Gaggi, Letojanni and Mongiuffi Melia, in the province of Messina. It is surrounded by lush hills, winding and narrow alleys that lead to the medieval castle, the main square and the most beautiful churches of the town. Many information sources affirm that these are baroque churches, but this is a mistake, because the churches of the village date back to the Middle Age and the Renaissance.


According to an ancient legend, it is told that the borders and the walls of this stunning village were built by Cam, namely the son of Noè, who sent his brother away from Sicily. This place remained in the hands of the descendants of Cam and his people. From nearby Etna volcano, the Cyclops enjoyed going through these hills and surely they had not to take much time to reach this rout, a nice walk between the sea and the hills where they detached the peaks to build seats to admire the natural wonders of this village and rest after their hard job. Cyclops also used to throw the top of the hills in the Ionian sea by creating rocks and promontories which made the bays and the gulfs more and more fascinating. On these bays, sparkling waves crashed on the coast, by surrounding the blue waters of the sea. Due to this legend, it was said that was born the promontory of S. Andrea, between Mazzarò and Isola Bella. The real history of Castelmola began after the fall of the Western Roman Empire. After this, the village was conquered by the Byzantines. It is probable the Castle of Mola, namely the build that gave the name to the village, was built during the Byzantine domination. Today, on the top of the village you can see only ruins that are hard to date . The unique date is the one relating to the construction of the protective walls. Ordered by Pietro D’Aragona, the walls were built in 1334. Thanks to these walls, the Castle of Mola became a stronghold and a prison at the same time.

What to see

castelmola-squareIn Castelmola, you can admire an unforgettable landscape surrounded by hills, mountains, sea and medieval buildings. The main attractions are the Castle of Mola I mentioned in the previous paragraph (built to protect the village from the attacks of the Saracens), Saint Antonino square and the cathedral . At the Castle of Mola, you can also attend the representation of the medieval hunting. This event is also called La Falconeria because in the Middle Age, people hunted falcons. Today, falcons are not hunted, but La Falconeria is an excellent occasion to see the acrobatics of these grand birds of prey in a fabulous location of the Middle Age. Sant’Antonino square has a typical mosaic floor of alternate white and lava stone (see the image) that creates a spectacular effect to enrich the breathtaking view of the village over the city of Taormina. For this reason, the village is also called the dizziness of vision. I really hope you’ll enjoy this natural vision. In the square, you can also see the Sant’Antonino church and the stone arch laid on the top of a staircase that surrounds the entrance of the medieval village. The cathedral dates back the 1500, but it was rebuilt recently in the 1930s on the ruins of the old cathedral. The cathedral is just on Sant’Antonino square which overlooks a stunning sight above Taormina. From this place, you’ll admire the evocative landscape of the Ionian coast overhanging the bay of Giardini Naxos and the magnificence of Etna volcano.

How to reach Castelmola

Castelmola is not hard to reach, but this depends on the place where you are. If you must reach the town from Taormina, you can take the bus that leaves from the city hourly. The ticket to reach Castelmola from Taormina by bus is 3 euros. For a taxi from Taormina to Castelmola, the ticket is 16 euros, instead.

castelmola- paintingsTo reach Castelmola from Catania airport, you must absolutely take a taxi. When I visited Castelmola, I reached the village from Taormina, by my car. The trip from Taormina to the entrance of Castelmola is really enjoyable and enchanting. It is as if you must climb a steep slope, because the village is just on a high promontory overhanging the Ionian sea. Once you are going through this path, you feel the impression to hike an endless maze of winding alleys which lead to the main square. Before reaching the main square, I suggest that you visit the shops and bazaars in the narrow alleys where you can also buy beautiful paintings ( see the image). I checked the taxi service online to go from Catania to Taormina and Castelmola, but many websites are only in Italian. Hence, if you need information in English to reach Castelmola, please see this link:

Hotels in Castelmola

hotel villa sonia

To spend your honeymoon in Castelmola, a good hotel is Villa Sonia ( see the image above).

The hotel is just in Castelmola, a few kms from Taormina. Outfitted with swimming pool and balconies overlooking the Mount Etna and the city of Taormina, the hotel is a small paradise to enjoy the stunning views of Taormina and the Mount Etna from this fabulous medieval village.

For more information about this hotel and to book this accommodation, see here.

Restaurants in Castelmola – what to eat
pasta with sardines


The hotel I mentioned above is also outfitted with an excellent restaurant. Another good restaurant where the owners speak English is La Taverna dell’Etna . This restaurant offers you the recipes of the typical Mediterranean cuisine such as delicious black sepia ravioli, carbonara sauce, the fabulous Sicilian cannoli with ricotta, pasta with sardines, swordfish rolls and the famous Naxos soup made with seafood. The other specialities of this restaurant are the triangles of swordfish with ricotta and wild fennel and tuna with sprinkled vinegar. In Castelmola, you can also sip a famous and tasty Sicilian wine, namely the wine flavoured with almond.

7 thoughts on “Castelmola, a small and silent village for your honeymoon

  1. Mary

    Hi. I am planning to spend my honeymoon in this beautiful destination.
    Can you help me?

    1. Rosalba

      Thank you so much Mary for appreciating this Sicilian destination.
      To help you in planning your trip, I need more information from you.
      Please send me a message on the contact form.
      I’ll be very happy to help you.

  2. felisha

    Hiya very nice site!! Guy .. Beautiful ..
    Wonderful .. I’ll bookmark your site and take the feeds also.
    I am happy to find so many useful info right here.

  3. Pingback: Sicily wedding, things to know – SICILY ON WEB

  4. April Childers

    We are a group of 13 people (older adults) coming to Sicily June 9-16 on a culinary tour. We are staying in taeromina. We are looking for things to do within one and a half hours of taeromina that has to do with culinary or sightseeing we love to take photos. We are already doing a cooking class. We would love to see the town above taeromina. Can you recommend a place for lunch that can handle 13 people? That has fabulous food and views? Also can you recommend doing anything else that would not be touristy. We want to go and experience more local stuff.

    1. Rosalba

      Hi April, Castelmola is is very interesting place to spend a not touristy and quiet vacation. I mentioned a good restaurant in the article. I also added a link about a hotel in Castelmola that also has a good restaurant. That is Villa Sonia. The facilities in this village can easily hosts 13 people. Enjoy your vacation in Castelmola, then!

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