Sailing Sicily: cruise to the Aeolian Islands
For a complete, relaxing sailing holiday in theAeolian Islands, you must first give yourself at least 6 days. Touring the islands by boat is an experience that must be experienced with the rhythms of sailing.
For this type of holiday, it’s always good to rely on professional charter companies for safety reasons. In fact, the Aeolian Islands are very windy and ports are not always available, especially during peak seasons. Therefore, it’s sometimes necessary to stay anchored and shelter in the coves with suitable depth.
From Portorosa, in the early morning, you sail away towards the first of our islands: Lipari, about 16 miles away. Bathing in the bay in front of the Faraglioni or Cava Pomice is almost a must. You’ll come to Spiaggia Blanca: you’ll notice small white pumice stones floating on the surface of a crystal blue water.
Docking in one of the ports and docks of the island, you’ll go through the alleys of the old town to visit the Castle and the Archaeological Museum. Then make use of a stop at the bar to enjoy a fresh mulberry granita with croissants and cream; or, as an alternative that’s no less calorific, you can have hot chocolate with ricotta. Here, as in all the Aeolian islands, the purple of the Bougainvillea on the white walls of the houses and the blue of the lacquered windows create a suggestion of colours that refresh your soul.
From Lipari to the island of Panarea you sail for 12 miles. We recommend making a stop so you can bathe in the bay in Cala Junco and then in Lisca Bianca. Cale di Dattilo and Cale di Basiluzzo are also very beautiful. To give you an idea of the charm these beaches have, just know that they have been the scene of amazing settings in different adverts and films.
In Panarea, there underwater steam vents are very active and can be seen just by snorkelling. So, even here, you get on your mask and tube to discover the wonderful seabed.
Finally, you stop for a rest in Cala degli Zimmari, the only sandy beach on the island, which is also called the Spiaggia Rossa beach for the beautiful colour of the reddish sand. Arriving on the island, walking through the alleys and the many boutiques of the town is a must.
Entertainment and the high life alternate with moments of peace and relaxation. The sunset is a magical moment in Panarea. There are those who prefer to spend it in the privacy of their boat, on land or in one of the magnificent terraces of the San Pietro’s many island lounge bars. This is the island’s glamorous lounge, where the chillout sounds of the clubs blend harmoniously with the floating colours of the dawn creating an elegant and unmissable atmosphere until the early hours of the morning.
Before leaving Panarea, having just woken up, make the most of the early hours of the morning to enjoy the best peach granita and malvasia by the sea. Immediately after reaching your boat, make your way to the island of Stromboli, 14 miles away. You can bathe in the bay of Strombolicchio or, alternatively, try Scari and Ginostra.
After mooring in the south of the island, you’ll reach the main pier by the tender and go and discover the village. You stroll through the streets of Stromboli to the church,Chiesa di San Vincenzo, where your gaze wanders across a magnificent view of the sea; or you’ll venture on a fascinating guided hike, to the Stromboli crater.
If you’re lucky and there’s an eruption going on, we recommend a midnight swim in the harbour, right across from the Sciara del Fuoco. From here, on your boat, you could witness the sight of flowing lava, lapilli and incandescent slag, which descend from the crater to the sea..
The red volcano, the silver moon and the dark sea create a unique charm in the night.
sailing from Stromboli for 22 miles, you reach Salina. Before lunch, take a refreshing swim in the bay in Lisca or Pollara. The island harbour is in the ports of Santa Marina di Salina or Rinella in Leni. We recommended you rent a scooter so you can explore the hidden corners of the island, its unique green and lush landscapes.
We recommend a visit to Valdichiesa to the seventeenth-century Sanctuary of the Terzito Madonna, or a trip to the Fossa delle Felci.
Here too, granita is a must, but even more so is the famous pane cunzato, a hot loaf seasoned with extra virgin olive oil and local products. Don’t forget to stock up on capers and cucunci(caperberries), found in abundance on the island, along with a few bottles of malvasia, the local Sicilian wine, made from raisins, which has a sweet and aromatic flavour.
Don’t miss the view of the sunset on Pollara, the splendid bay formed inside a partially sunken prehistoric crater. Before a seafood dinner, treat yourself to an aperitif in one of the many local bars.
Sailing for 14 miles from Salina, you’ll reach Filicudi, a wild and otherworldly island. Here, the bath and lunch in the harbour are made on Punta Perciato, a lava promontory where the sea has opened up a passage. Nearby is the Grotta del Bue Marino, so called by the old fishermen because it was thought to be the refuge of the monk seal. Rounding Perciato, you can stop at the beach, before heading towards the fantastically-shaped rocks not far from the Canna.
Under this cliff, surrounded by crystal clear waters, you can dive in and see a great variety of fish.
After docking at Filicudi Porto or at the Pecorini a mare pier, possibly in the cooler hours, you explore the small town. From this island, one of the furthest from the Sicilian coast, the night view is idyllic: a vivid starry sky where you can see the Milky Way with the naked eye.
From Filicudi, you head towards the island of Vulcano, about 22 miles away, arriving at Porto Levante. A visit to the island and at stop at Fanghi, a real natural spa, are unmissable. It’s impossible to describe the panorama offered by the climb to the crater, which we strongly recommend you do in comfortable hiking shoes. And again, you’ll visit the caves on a tour of the coast amidst the sulphur gases released from the earth.
If you have less time, look into the day tour from Milazzo to Vulcano!
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