Isola Bella is, like the name implies, a pretty island. The tiny isle is part of the municipality of Taormina. Is is so charming that it is often called "the pearl of the Ionian".
The rocky island was once the property of King Ferdinand II, who gifted it to the city of Taormina in 1806. It went through a series of private owners, and a picturesque villa was built on the summit of the island's hill taking in both the spectacular sea views as well as the coastline and mountains. It was obtained by the Region of Sicily in 1990 and turned into a nature reserve. There is an abundance of birds and some rare lizards found here.
Isola Bella is connected to the beaches of the mainland by a pathway. At low tide it widens and so the island almost appears to be part of the coast. The pebble beach on the island is prized for its protected location, sitting in the bay it is cuddled by the island and the mountains, giving it calm water and a longer bathing season as it escapes the winds and colder waves.
There are no services on Isola Bella, but the mainland beaches offer restaurants, cafes and entertainment. A stroll to the island and around its rocky perimeter is a must when you're in the area for the views and the unique atmosphere!
Explore nearby towns
Taormina embraces its Greco history while sitting on the sandy beaches of the Mediterranean Sea.
One of the longer beaches of Taormina stretches along the Bay of Mazzeo.
Nestled to the north of Taormina, Letojanni is a popular coastal resort.
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