During the summer months, Piazza Duomo or ‘Cathedral Square’ in central Taormina becomes the setting of a market for typical food products and artisan crafts. You will find locally produced almonds, capers, cheese, meats, condiments and spices, as well as wine. If you have a sweet tooth, then you will further be tempted by delicious ricotta. The artisan goods make great souvenirs and range from figurines made with lava stone from Mount Etna to paintings portraying the charming landscapes of Taormina.
The square is dominated by the magnificent Cathedral of Taormina which is dedicated to St. Nicholas of Bari and dates from the 13th century. Also look out for Palazzo Ciampoli which is a 15th century building which has been transformed into a tree known as the House Floresta, as well as the Town Hallwhich dates from the 17th century and home to the offices of the City of Taormina. At the center of the square stands a circular fountain whose base at one time also served as a drinking trough. On top of the fountain dating back to the Baroque period and made entirely of Taormina stone is a female centaur: a mythological creature holding a ball and scepter in her hands as symbols of power.
Piazza Duomo is also traditionally a meeting place from where the classic evening ‘passeggiata’ or stroll starts in the direction of Corso Umberto I, the most fashionble street of Taormina. It is a succession of boutiques and shops crossing the city center.