Messina is the third largest city on the island Sicily, Italy, and the capital of the Messina province. It's located near the northeastern corner of Sicily, at the Strait of Messina.
Also founded by Greeks in the 8 century BC, Messina was originally called Zancle. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the city was successively conquered by the Goths, then by the Byzantine Empire in 535, by the Arabs in 842, and in 1061 by the Norman brothers Robert Guiscard and Roger Guiscard (later count Roger I of Sicily). In 1189 the English King Richard I stopped at Messina in his travel to the Holy Land and occupied the city.
The city was almost entirely destroyed by an earthquake and a tsunami on the morning of December 28, 1908. The city was largely rebuilt in the following year, according to a more modern and rational plan. Further damages were added in the second World War by the Allied air bombardments from 1943.
Messina is a place for some of the best beach holidays in Italy, but it offers also other interesting tourist attractions such as: the cathedral from the 12 century, which contains the remains of Conrad, king of Germany and Sicily in the 13 century, the church "Annunziata dei Catalani", dating from the late Norman period, and the church "Santa Maria degli Alemanni" (from the 13 century), which belonged to the Knights of Malta; other places worth to a visit are "Palazzo Calapaj", "Fountain of Orion" and "Fountain of Neptune", and the "San Ranieri" lighthouse.
Messina has some of the best beaches from Sicily, Italy, so no wonder that many holiday makers choose it as their travel destination. Beaches from "Capo D'Orlando" are considered to be the best.
Being a big city, finding accommodation in hotels of Messina usually is not a problem. Still, in the peak season most rooms are occupied and especially the hotels and villas from the beach are very crowded. So, tourists who intend to spend beach holidays in Messina or just to stop along their tour of Sicily are advised to book their accommodation well in advance.