Goodbye port! How to explore (roadstead) Egadi and Aeolian islands

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The true cruiser is not the dockside one, but the one who seeks out the anchorages unknown to most or the less crowded roadsteads where he can enjoy the beauty and magic of places. It is in some of the most fascinating parts of Mare Nostrum that we have chosen for you as many as 24 anchorages in which even in the peak season one can enjoy truly unspoiled nature. In this installment we will take you to discover some of the pearls of the Mediterranean, the Aeolian and Egadi Islands. Unfurl your sails and sail with us.

Aeolian Islands

Vulcan Island. Mastro Minico Cove 38°24′ 95N – 14°56′ 50E

A wild inlet surrounded by high cliffs, its E shore is hemmed in by a beautiful pebble beach, in front of which you can bottom out in 10 meters of water on sand and rocks. Watch out for shoals on the E side. Landing here, on the NO side of Vulcan, you can begin the climb to the top of the Grand Crater, a lunar area rich in sulfur and obsidian crystals. The walk takes about an hour, and it is best to leave early in the morning so as not to struggle under the high sun. The caldera is massive and unique, and sulfur-laden puffs of smoke come out around it. Not far from the Cove, there are stores and markets in the center of Porto di Levante, as well as the historic and very famous Ritrovo Remigio (090.9852085): here you can find cassatelle, n’zuddi or colorful marzipan fruits. The granita with cream is also excellent. Still staying in the village, a restaurant recommended for those who love fish in all its variations is Don Piricuddu (339.2626143).

Lipari Island. Long Fist 38°29′ 10N – 14°54′ 00E

Surrounded by small sheer cliffs, it is located on the O coast near San Calogero. At the bottom of the bay is a pebble beach: best to anchor 100 meters from this in 10 meters of water on sand and rocks. Lipari’s historic center can be turned around in no time: from Corso Vittorio Emanuele, preceding the steep Via XXIV Maggio, you reach the Spanish fortress and the Aeolian Archaeological Museum. The collection of masks testifying to the Greek cult of Dionysus is worth seeing. From Cugno Lungo going S you can reach in 5 minutes the beautiful Quattrocchi Belvedere, from the top of which the gaze sweeps over Vallemuria beach, the Scogli delle Formiche, the stacks of Pietralunga, Pietra Menalda and on Brigghio, a smooth cusp of volcanic basalt. For eating on the island the most popular restaurant is Filippino (090.9811002), perfect for those who love cous cous. At Chitarra Bar (090.9811554) then listen to good live music. Salina Island.

Pollara Cove 38°34′ 80N – 14°48′ 30E

Below Punta Perciato, at the NO end of the island is the spectacular bay with high cliffs and a black beach. The best anchorage is right in the center almost in front of the village of Pollara. You drop anchor between the Point and the Faraglione, in 7 meters of water on a rocky bottom. From Poggio del Semaforo, a lookout point located just above Cala di Pollara, one can admire the most beautiful sunset in all of the Aeolian Islands. It is an exciting place, and not only for the magnificent nature that characterizes it: in fact, the most beautiful scenes of the film “Il postino,” Massimo Troisi’s last masterpiece, were filmed here. Not far away, quality products, such as pickled preserves, pasta sauces and “cucunuci,” are purchased for the galley at the farm store Sapori Eoliani (090.9844406). Then there is a recommended restaurant in the village of Santa Marina Salina: it is Porto Bello (090.9843125), where you can eat on a magnificent terrace.

Panarea Island. Milazzese Bay 38°37′ 60N – 15°04′ 10E

Located on the SE coast of Panarea, it is divided into two coves. The first, of the same name, is hemmed in by a beautiful beach. The second, on the O side, is called Cala Zimmari and is home to two more sandy shores. You can give bottom in the center of the bays in 5-7 meters of water on sandy bottom. In addition to staying at the roadstead, it is also nice to go ashore, perhaps to admire the prehistoric village located near Punta Milazzese, where it turns out that Panarea has a thousand-year history that stems from the first inhabitants who stopped here from the Bronze Age, 1,200 years before Christ. In the island village of San Pietro, on the other hand, go to dine at Broccia (090.983027), which offers revisited typical cuisine. For the evening, the cult venue is Raya (tel. 090.983013), where you can get wild on the dance floor, on the rooftop terrace.

Stromboli Island. Ginostra 38°46′ 70N – 15°11′ 70E

It is a small cove located just in front of the village of the same name: you can give bottom in front of the houses, 80 meters from land, in 7-8 meters of water, on an irregular rocky bottom. We are in the S part of the island the one “hidden” by the mass of “Iddu,” the great active island volcano, whose peak reaches almost a thousand meters in height. It is a natural spectacle not to be missed, as are the lava walls of the Sciara di Fuoco, located just to the NO and also accessible by land. Of course the real “show” of Stromboli is enjoyed from the sea, at a good safe distance though. Near Ginostra also opens up the beach of Forgia Vecchia, always uncrowded and delightful. Between eruptions we also eat: and in Ginostra to try is Nonna Assunta (090.9880288), fresh fish and a family welcome.

Aegadian Islands

Favignana Island.

Cala Longa 37°55′ 00N – 12°19′ 30E

Positioned in the center of the southern coast, the bay is protected on the O side by the Punta of the same name. Within the roadstead is a 50-meter-long pier, to which, however, only vessels no more than 8 meters long can dock. Otherwise give bottom 200 meters from the ground. Take your time visiting the village of Favignana, where the Art Nouveau mole of Palazzo Florio stands out. Other points to see are La Camparia and Fort Santa Caterina: the former is the building where nets were woven and there was the warehouse with the tools for slaughter, while the latter is a fortress dating back to the year 1000 and built as a watchtower for Saracen pirates. It is on the summit of the mountain of the same name. To sit at the right table, here is Trattoria La Bettola (0923.921988): in a simple but cozy setting you can enjoy traditional seafood dishes. Levanzo Island.

Tramontana Cove 38°00′ 70N – 12°19′ 60E

Located in the NO corner and well sheltered from all O winds, it is protected by a Marine Reserve and fishing and diving are prohibited (www.ampisoleegadi.it). The approach is facilitated by the conspicuous presence of a bunker and a large cave on the beach. Very close to the bay, rounding Punta dei Sorci, one discovers the incredible Grotta del Genovese: it is a cavern of karst formation that houses the richest Italian site of prehistoric art. In fact, there are as many as 33 figures engraved in the rock by our very ancient ancestors. Once ashore, those who are “tired” of sailing and feel like walking can explore the network of trails that cover the island and can be walked or at most walked by mule. In the center of Levanzo borgo there are stores, markets and interesting eateries, such as the Fenici Restaurant (0923.924083), which offers genuine seafood cuisine in the halls of the guesthouse of the same name. Marettimo Island.

Cala Manione 37°59′ 40N – 12°04′ 10E

Small inlet recessed in the NE corner of the island, S of the Fort of Punta Troia. You can bottom there in 3-4 meters of water on sand and rock: with S winds the anchorage suffers from undertow. Worth seeing is the nearby mighty Punta Troia Castle, which was erected at the time of the Arab domination of the island and later strengthened by the Spanish. In the maze of narrow streets that make up the village of Marettimo, it is worth looking for the sign of the very typical restaurant La Scaletta (0923.923233).

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