Looking for a unique thing to do in Sicily? Discover the real Sicily off the beaten track with The Godfather tour.
Cue bad Godfather impressions.
I think it helps if you put something in between your cheeks, like Maltesers or something.
Yes, rule number one before going on a tour of The Godfather film locations is pack some Maltesers with you. Anyone else really craving Maltesers?
Anywho… Sicily is famous for it’s ties to the mafia; it’s believed the word originated in Sicily. It’s meaning roughly translates as bravado, boldness and swagger. But director Francis Ford Coppola couldn’t use the original novels location (Corleone) to film scenes as the town looked too modern.
Even if you haven’t seen The Godfather (it’s okay I’ve not seen Grease) by using the film locations of The Godfather movie you’ll see the prettiest towns, secret places and hidden gems in Sicily. Whilst learning about legendary movie scene history and locations.
200 metres above the sea at the top of the mountain, you’ll find the small and pretty hillside village of Savoca in Messina (in easy reach of Taormina). It’s remained relatively unchanged as still looks as historic as it did in the movie, the exact reason why Coppola chose Savoca as a film location.
Bar Vitelli is where Michael Corleone sat under the canopy and declared his intentions to marry his future wife Apollonia. And it’s barely changed, which makes an excellent photo opportunity. Two coffees are three euros (so fame hasn’t gone to Bar Vitelli’s head then) but the stunning view is free. Bar Vitelli also has it’s own little museum dedicated to the movie.
After visiting Bar Vitelli and buying a Godfather souvenir of Marlon Brando’s face on a mug, walk up the hill to the church, Chiesa di Santa Lucia, where you can recreate the wedding scene between Michael and Apollonia. Well I have a new idea how I’m going to propose…
Away from The Godfather, the crypt in Cappuccini Monastery is definitley worth a visit; the catacombs contains 37 mummified bodies (fully dressed which somehow makes it sound scarier?) from the 18th century…
Escape the crowds of Taormina to Forza d’Agro (10 miles and eight from Savoca) where scenes from Godfather Part II and Part III were filmed.
When Michael first arrives in Sicily, the beautiful Sant’Agostino is the backdrop to the scene. But the church is most famous for the thrilling scene involving Vito Corleone escaping to America whilst avoiding detection of Don Ciccio’s men.
And if you’re in Forza d’Agro, you need to visit the 16th century castle. You can’t miss it as it dominates the skyline. You should probably enjoy dinning on the cheap and local fresh seafood too.
How to get to Sicily
Sicily should definitely be on your list of places to visit in Italy. The island is often forgotten, but ferries to Sicily from Naples, Genoa and even Malta couldn’t be simpler or cheaper, making Sicily perfect for day trips too.