As in the past when merciless warriors used this city to invade the island, Messina is still today the main gateway to Sicily. With its distinctive curved harbour on the northern most point of Sicily, the narrow stretch of water of the Strait of Messina is the only thing that divides this island from mainland Italy.
Reconfigured by catastrophe, the impressive old town centre has wide boulevards with elegant turn of century buildings and one of the most suggestive cathedrals in Sicily. The 1908 earthquake – considered the most lethal seismic event in the history of western world – destroyed over 98% of the buildings leaving the city razed to the ground. The 1911 new city reconstruction left no room for nostalgia- long streets and strong anti-seismic buildings on a strict grid plan formed what is today the city.