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Messina, Sicily

Has anyone actually stayed in Messina? And if so, where? How was it?

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About five years ago I was briefly there as a transfer point for the Aeolian Islands after Taormina- it is pretty much a port, and industrial- I would assume you are considering it as a stopover on the way to or from somewhere else in Sicily? It is not that far from either Palermo or Catania (that is where I flew into and out of)to not just stay in either of those airport cities. I walked along the water from the train station to where you get the ferries and it was sort of gritty- broken sidewalk and scrubby grass. Maybe there are more scenic hidden parts away from the port you will hear about!