Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini)

From Messina to Taormina more convenient to go by bus, because bus station is located almost in the center of the city, at an altitude of 200 meters above sea level, while the train station is located almost on the water and get out in the city need a bus. Yesterday evening, on my way home, I stopped at the bus station, where I found out that the first bus to Taormina leaves at 11:40 and goes for almost two hours. I didn't want to lose half a day, so I couldn't think of anything better to do than take the train, which runs every hour.

The Train Messina-Taormina

After leaving Messina at 10: 10, I got off the train at the Taormina-Giardini station about 40 minutes later. The opportunity to get acquainted with this object, which was repeatedly seen in Fellini's films and just before leaving in Luc Besson's" Blue abyss", also played an important role in the choice of transport. The Taormina-Giardini railway station is located almost halfway between Messina and Catania, on a single-track stretch of road that follows the curves of the coastline and abounds in stunning views. The dual name is due to the fact that the station serves two localities - Taormina and the coastal town of Giardini Naxos. The station was built as part of the construction of a railway connecting the port of Messina in the far North of the island with agricultural areas on the East coast of the Ionian sea. The site for the station was chosen one kilometer from the village of Giardini, below the city of Taormina, in the space between two tunnels. Originally, the station was a modest wooden house and a storage shed for Luggage. The first train from Mesina arrived at the station on December 12, 1866, and on January 3, 1967, it was traffic to Catania is open. The line was built and operated by the Società Vittorio Emanuele company, then by the Italian southern railway society, in 1885 the owner became the railway company of Sicily, and finally, in 1905, all the Railways were merged into one state-owned company. In the twenties of the last century, the state Railways began a large-scale program of infrastructure expansion, which also affected the Taormina-Giardini station.

Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini)

The project of the station building was commissioned by the architectural Bureau of Roberto Narducci. For the construction site, the castle of Villagonia, built in the 16th century and belonging to the noble family of San Martino, was expropriated and demolished. Prior to this, the castle was owned by the princes of Pardo and the Dukes of Montalbano (whether the ancestors of the famous a Commissioner from a cult TV series for Sicilians?). Along with the castle" under the bulldozer " went the chapel of the Madonna di Poroto salvo. The new station building was built in two years and received passengers in 1928.

Station of Taormina is a wonderful two-storey building in art Nouveau style (Art Nouveau in Sicily this current received the name of liberty palermino). The Central part of the facade is framed by crenellated towers, stylized with the silhouette of the ruined castle of Villageia, the main entrance covers the canopy of shaped iron. The platforms are also protected from the sun and rain by metal canopies on cast-iron columns, decorated with wrought-iron ornaments.

Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini)

In the arched Windows and doorways, you can trace Arab-Norman motifs.

Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini)

But the most interesting are the interiors of the station.

Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini). Interior

Стены и потолки украшены фресками и барельефами работы художника из Палермо Сальваторе Грегориетти (1870-1952),

Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini). Painted ceiling

В росписях присутствуют арабские орнаменты, а изображения слонов и тигров напоминают о Азии и Востоке. В других сюжетах можно увидеть оленей, собак, на фоне леса, что отсылает к европейской, норманнской культуре.

Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini). Painted ceiling

По эскизам того же Сальваторе Грегориетти были изготовлены кованные элементы - люстры и уже упоминавшиеся навесы.

Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini). Painted ceiling

Stained glass Windows that adorn ticket office Windows,

Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini). Interior

and the dark wood furniture in the waiting rooms. Currently only the "Sala di II Classe" is available to the public, where there are modest seats, and the walls and ceiling are not pampered with artistic excesses. I think the atmosphere should be richer for the distinguished passengers.

Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini). Interior

From 1959 to 1992 in Taormina can be reached also in the line of Randazzo-Alcantara, with a stop in Trappitello, there was the project is to make the line double track, to replace the old winding road along the coast. This would lead to the closure of the Taormina-Giardini station. But, fortunately, the opposite happened - the Ministry of cultural heritage stepped in for the historical line, passengers can still enjoy wonderful views from the train Windows, the Randazzo-Alcantara branch was closed. By the way, this abandoned branch is also interesting and deserves a visit.

Taormina-Giardini station (Stazione di Taormina-Giardini). Interior