Whether you arrive here from direction of Catania or from the direction of Messina, at the beautiful sight of the majestic Etna you must close your eyes for a moment before realizing that you are physically in the mythical Giardini Naxos. The emotion is very strong, always!Whether or not it is the first time you arrive in this small paradise called the Gardens of Naxos (I Giardini di Naxos). The towns first tourists merged the two names of Giardiniand Naxosbecause of the immense beauty of this memorial site; a site that rests on lumps lava of Jurassic origins, which faces the Ionian Sea, between the mythical river Sirina and the famous river Alcantara(also calledAkesines) This site, which is inimitable in its beauty, is the Bay of Giardini Naxos.
Here you find Cape Schisò, a charming peninsula of lava rock, created by the eruption of the small volcano Mojo Alcantara.
It was here that Teocle, the Oikistes of Euboea and the Cyclades, arrived with his people with their agile ships to this beautiful and fertile land, accompanied by a light wind of Levanter.
This is Giardini Naxos, the first Greekcolony in Sicily: in this precise location in the world, about 2275 years ago, began the great adventure of a people who, in the short span of a few decades, would create a myth unsurpassed and envied by all the world, and whose cities, for more than five hundred years, competed to gain the grandeur and the beauty of the most magnificent and most beautiful cities of the motherland.
Here we have a shining door of history, between these sharp lava stones and the very fine sands of the shores of this uncontaminated sea, the slopes of the hills of Mount Tauro, where stands the mythical Taormina, higher up there is the famous village of Castelmola, even higher there are the Peloritani Mountains, and further north-west there is the mighty and majestic Etna with its small volcanoes.
Giardini Naxos is nowadays a major tourist attraction situated along the coast south ofTaormina, more exactly between Cape Taormina and Cape Schisò. In fact, the origins of Giardini Naxos are distant in time, and archaeological excavations in recent years have helped to reconstruct and reassess the mythical past. By definition it is the oldest Greek colony in Sicily, it was founded by settlers from Chalcis , who came here in 735 BC.
The statue stands on the exact spot where, in the mists of time in the late Tertiary period (about 5.3 million years ago), a mythical lava flow generated by the volcano Mojo invaded the old river bed of
Akesines (known today as river Alcantara) , took possession of this river’s course and more upstream created the legendary Gorges of Alcantara. This lava flow redirected the course of the river and stopped to form a lump of lava forming a peninsula Cape Schisò.
The Gulf of Giardini Naxos in fact, due to its unique geographical position extends along the picturesque bay, with a promenade that is besieged by thousands of visitors each year. Here several among the biggest tour operators in Europe have made it big: Tuirepresenting central Europe, Fritidsresorand Startours representing Scandinavia.Giardini Naxos was the pearl of Swedish tourists, who completely dominated the town during the 1980’s. The beach is sandy and golden,
with a series of excellent and highly equipped bathing establishments that often offer an entertainment-service. There are also several free beaches,ideal for a pleasant holiday.
For all of these reasons, Giardini Naxos together with Taormina, have become one of the most beautiful, famous and popular tourist resorts of Sicily and the entire Mediterranean Sea.