Mondello Lido (Mondello): This is where the citizens of Palermo flock on summer days to escape the stifling heat of the capital city. In Sicily, Mondello Lido is outclassed in fashion only by the beaches at the foot of Taormina. Its wide, sandy beaches extend for 2km (1 1/4 miles) from Monte Pellegrino to Monte Gallo.
Mortelle: The best sands in northeast Sicily are found at the resort of Mortelle, which is where the Messinese themselves go to escape the scalding heat in their capital. The resort lies 12km (7 1/2 miles) north of Messina at the northeast tip of the island. The area is filled with good sandy beaches, so you can take your pick. The best-accessorized strip is Lido dei Tirreno.
Spiaggia Sabbie Nere (Vulcano): Completely off the beaten trail, "Black Sands Beach" is the finest in the Aeolian archipelago -- that is, once you get over the fact that its sands are black and not powdery white. Beaching it here is something to tell the folks back home about.
Lido Mazzarò (Taormina): The best-equipped beach in Sicily, Lido Mazzarò is also one of the finest, a favorite sea-bordering strip of sand and gravel once frequented by the stars of Hollywood's golden age and still as interesting as ever. A 15-minute cable-car ride down from the medieval town of Taormina, the beach is a hot spot from April to October. Bars and restaurants border the sands.
Giardini-Naxos: Situated on the waterfront near Taormina, Giardini-Naxos is one of the most sophisticated seaside resorts of Sicily. The sandy beach, one of the island's best, lies between Capo Taormina in the northwest and Capo Schisò in the south. It may lack Taormina's medieval charm, but it's filled with good hotels, fine swimming, and excellent restaurants.
Marina di Ragusa: Southeastern Sicily has a number of beaches, some of them quite tacky, but Marina di Ragusa is the best of the lot. This is quite an appealing area, and if Ragusa is too hot in summer, you might drop anchor at a hotel here and visit the ancient city on a day trip. The resort also has the best ice-cream bars, pubs, and watersports in the area.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.
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