|The province of Messina
Giardini Naxos Naxos (Zip Code 98035) is 245 km. distant from Agrigento, 179 km. from Caltanissetta, 53 km. from Catania, 150 km. from Enna, 43 km. from Messina, which province it belongs to, 302 km. from Palermo, 157 km. from Ragusa, 111 km. from Siracusa, 394 km. from Trapani.
The municipality has 9.075 inhabitants and an area of 544 hectares for a population density of 1668 inhabitants per square kilometre. It rises on a flat area along the coast and is 5 metres above sea-level.
The Town Hall is placed in piazza Municipio, tel. ++39 0942-578011 fax. +39 0942-5780209.
Photo © Reti e Sistemi
Main economic activities are agriculture, tourism and handicraft. Products mostly cultivated are citrus fruits, olives, vegetables, wine-grapes. Typical handicrafts are wrought iron works, embroideries and artistic pottery articles. Fantastic and famous are its beaches.
The name of the pretty town derives from Sicilian Giardini that means "citrus orchards". The addition "Naxos" derives from the name of the first Greek colony in Sicily.
The present centre rises on the same territory. Naxos was founded by Calcidesi in 735 B.C. near the bay of Schisò and it was preminent over the others colonies of the island in religious matter because in its place there was Apollo Archegetes's altar.
Photo © 2002 Tourist Board Office of Giardini Naxos
It is the god protector of Greek colonization in Sicily. In 403 B.C. it supported Athens against Siracusa and was so distroyed by tyrant Denis. In the Byzanthine period populated nucleus enlarged along the coast.
In the following centuries the centre has lost part of its importance and in the Middle Ages its territorial role was only to be the port of Taormina.
A better development of town centre there was in the XIX century and in 1847 it was separated by commune of Taormina and reached its autonomy.
The most interesting monuments are the Castle of Schisò with medieval origins; the ruins of a Blockhouse of the XVII-XVIII centuries and inside are kept some archaeological finds; an Archaeological Museum and the Tower Vignazza of medieval period. There are also many archaeological areas of the ancient Naxos where are preserved the remains of a temple of the V century B.C. and graves of the bronze age.