"The Aeolian Islands"
Rising out of the cobalt-blue seas off Sicily’s northeastern coast, the Unesco-protected Aeolian Islands (Vulcano, Lipari, Salina, Panarea, Stromboli, Filicudi and Alicudi) are a little piece of paradise, a seven-island archipelago offering a wealth of opportunities for relaxation and outdoor fun. Stunning waters provide sport for swimmers, sailors, kayakers and divers, while trekkers can climb hissing volcanoes and gourmets can sip honey-sweet Malvasia wine.
The largest islands is Lipari, the most populated and liveliest of the seven islands, but there is much to explore and experience in the Aeolian! Salina boasts excellent accommodation and good transport links, while Stromboli and Vulcano entertain nature lovers with awe-inspiring volcanic shenanigans and black-sand beaches. Chic Panarea offers luxurious living at lower prices in low season, while Filicudi and Alicudi have an end-of-the-line appeal that’s irresistible for fans of off-the-beaten-track adventure. And let’s not forget the active volcano Stromboli towering at 924m had it’s last major eruption as recently as April 2019!
Capo d’Orlando Marina
Capo d’Orlando Marina is located in the mythical Palermo, surrounded by azure water and a beautiful green landscape. This is a completely modernized marina. It is well-equipped with all the facilities you might require. Everything is perfectly ordered and ready for use. The professional staff of Capo d’Orlando Marina will give you a warm welcome and make sure you’re well taken care of.
The beautiful infrastructure of Capo d’Orlando Marina is based on the bio-architecture concept. Consequently, the berth booking facility blends perfectly in the environment. Boats with a length of 7,3 to 40 m are welcomed to drop anchor here.
Capo d’Orlando Marina has a total number of 553 berths, situated on a dock provided with mooring line tensioners. The overall area covered by the marina reaches 183.000 square meters.
A complete range of services is available here, including 110 t travel lift, refueling station, shipyard, workshop, parking, diving service, mooring assistance, courtesy bikes. The shopping gallery, the famous Yacht Club with its elegant restaurant will make you not want to leave the marina’s premises.
Address: Via Notarbartolo, 35 – 90141 Palermo
Marina Services: Mooring Assistance. Freshwater & Power supply, Fuel station, Shipyard, Diving service, Surveillance h24 WebCam, WiFi, Fire System, Weather Forecast, Charter base for the Aeolian Islands, Shopping centre, Bar, restaurants, minimarket, Yacht club, Toilets and showers, Lighted quays, 860 parking spaces. Golf Car, Courtesy bikes, Caveau Bateaux, Car rental
Porto Rosa Marina
Marina di Portorosa is also identified as Porto di Portorosa or Portorosa Touristic Port and it is located in the third largest city on the island of Sicily, Messina. It is also known as the capital of the province with the same name and it represents a great attraction for all tourists who wish to visit a historically charged area that is strategically positioned next to the Strait of Messina. This marina specializes in tourism and pleases its guests thanks to its city’s complexity and the beauty of its natural surroundings. There are numerous religious sites, civil and military architectural points of interest, monuments and museums that are worth visiting while in the area. The Cathedral of Messina, the Church of the Annunziata dei Catalani, the Porta Grazia, the Fountain of Orion, etc., are all main landmarks with a long history and engaging stories. There are many eye-catching hotels to choose from such as the Royal Palace Hotel, the Grand Hotel Liberty, etc.
Address:Via dei 1000 is. 101 n° 243, 98123 Messina
Phone: +39 0941 874280
VHF Channels: 16
Open: All year
Max Length Berths: 45m
Number of Berths: 100
Marina Services: Bar, Restaurant, Wifi, Water, Electricity, Dressing rooms, Security, Fuel station, Market, Shipyard, Sailing school, Crane, Laundry, Travellift, Ramp, Waste collection, Residual water collection, Bilge Collection,Rent car, Pharmacy
The prevailing winds around the Aeolian Islands during the summer tend to be from NW or NE, although in calm weather sea breezes can be encountered from any direction blowing onto and between the islands. While infrequent, gales are not unknown during the spring and early summer and careful forward planning is necessary as there are only two harbours which offer adequate shelter (and even then, not in strong southerlies). In winter, the gregale is a strong NE wind that can affect the whole of the island group and blow for several days..
Places To Visit
“The Aeolian Islands”
Lat/Long – 38.3946° N, 14.9706° E
Vulcano is the southernmost of the Aeolian Islands, lying less than a mile due S of Lipari. Known as Thermessa by the Greeks in view of its many hot springs, it was the Romans who gave the island its present name after Vulcan, god of fire, thus adding a new generic term to the language. Of the island’s three original volcanos, only two remain active. A small underwater volcano on the east coast at the bay of Porto di Levante has created the hot mud baths on the shore popular with oflactorally challenged tourists, while the largest, Gran Cratere, looms over the island’s northern end, its active fumaroles sending constant clouds of sulfurous steam into the air. The island has two anchorages, Porto di Ponente and Porto di Levante, which offer reasonable shelter in strong winds from NE/SE and NW/SW respectively.
There are no hazards in the approaches to Vulcano, although there are gusts off the land and in the channel between Volcano and Lipari in strong NW winds.
Visiting yachts normally anchor in one of the island’s two anchorages, Porto di Ponente Porto di Levante and Porto di Ponente, depending on wind direction. Both anchorages offer good holding in mud in depths ranging from 3.0 to 8.0 metres.
The bay of Porto di Levante, on the east side of the promontory, is also the main ferry terminal for the island. It is the best place to be in westerlies but is open to winds from NE round to SE. Either anchor moor on the quay in depths of 3.0 – 4.0 metres, clear of the pier where the hydrofoils and ferries berth, or anchor off in the bay to the north of the ferry pier. Depths here range from 3.0 – 10.0 metres and holding is good in mud. It is rather uncomfortable on the quay with regular ferry wash and in most circumstances, you are better off anchoring.
Porto di Ponente lies on the west side of the promontory jutting out towards Lipari at the N tip of Vulcano. It offers good shelter in all winds except from W round to N, when Porto di Levante is better sheltered. The entrance is between two sets of rocky pinnacles framing the cove. Anchor in 4.0 – 8.0 metres wherever there is space. The bottom is sand and mud and good holding once your anchor is dug in.
“The Aeolian Islands”
Lat / Long – 39.1974° N, 20.1852° E
Lipari is the largest island in the Aeolian Islands of Italy and its eponymous town is the main ferry port for the island group. Traces of occupation have been found here dating back to Neolithic times and Lipari’s archaeological museum is one of the finest in southern Italy, with relics of Greek, Carthaginian, Roman, Byzantine and later occupations. More contemporary accretions are the huge pumice mines at the northern end of the island, which are the island’s principal source of revenue after tourism. The town is dominated by a massive citadel, built in the 16th century by the Spanish on the remains of a former Greek acropolis. The citadel overlooks the town’s two main harbours, Marina Corta and Marina Longa (of which only the latter is suitable for yachts). Better shelter is to be found in the marina of Pignataro, which lies one mile NE around the bay.
There are no hazards in the approaches to Lipari, although there are gusts off the land and in the channel between Volcano and Lipari in strong NW winds.
Effectively, yachts have a choice of two mooring options: Marina Lunga immediately below the town citadel, where yachts berth on one of two long pontoons (one of which is seasonal) and Pignataro Marina, where yachts berth inside a protective breakwater. Pignataro, while lying a mile from the town centre, provides better shelter if adverse conditions are expected.
“The Aeolian Islands”
Lat / Long – 39.2346° N, 20.1357° E
The green island of Salina, the second largest of the Aeolian Islands in Italy, is formed around two extinct volcanoes which give the island its distinctive shape and also its exceptionally fertile soils. It is notable for the production of capers and the grapes for its unique Malvasia wines. Formerly there were also salt pans at the small village of Lingua in the south, from which the island gets its name. Lying just two miles from Lipari, Salina was settled by the Greeks at the same time as its larger sister and thus numerous Greek and Roman remains have been unearthed in various parts of the island. Today, the island has a lively summer tourist trade (although less frantic than that of Lipari). Its harbour of Santa Marina has both a commercial basin and a new Darsena Turistica which is a popular calling point for yachts cruising the islands.
Salina lies just over two miles NW of the island of Lipari. There are no dangers in the approach to its main harbour of Santa Marina Salina, which is situated half-way along the east coast of the island. The harbour consists of two basins, the commercial base to the N and the Darsena Turistica to the south. Both basins are protected from all directions except S by enclosing moles.
There are two options for visiting yachts in Salina: the commercial port, which yachts need to share with the regular ferries and hydrofoils calling at the island, and the more congenial mooring arrangements in the Darsena Turistica immediately S of the commercial port. In reality, most yachts will only resort to the commercial port if the Darsena Turistica is full.
There are no suitable anchorages in Salina, except in very settled weather. A safer bet, especially in unsettled weather, is the two anchorages on Vulcano, Porto di Ponente and Porto di Levante, which offer reasonable shelter in strong winds from NE/SE and NW/SW respectively.
“The Aeolian Islands”
Lat/Long – 38.6375° N, 15.0645° E
Panarea island is situated ten miles NE of Salina in the Aeolian Islands. One of the smallest islands in the archipelago, it is also one of the most picturesque and has in recent years attracted a number of celebrity visitors to its peace and isolation. There is a 100 metre long jetty at Panarea’s main settlement, San Pietro, which can accommodate a small number of yachts in settled weather. At Punta Milazzese at the southern end of the island is a Bronze Age settlement of 23 huts, first uncovered in 1948.
Panarea is surrounded by a number of rocky islets and reefs and caution is needed in the approach. The main settlement at San Pietro lies halfway along the E side of the island.
There is a small jetty at the island’s main port of San Pietro with bollards and mooring rings which can be used by yachts. You will need to use your anchor to moor stern or bows-to, avoiding the end of the jetty where the ferries moor and the extension on the S side where the hydrofoils berth. Yachts can moor on either the N or S side, depending on wind conditions. Depths at the jetty range from under 2.0 metres at the root to 6.5 metres at the end. The jetty is a very unpleasant and possibly dangerous place to be in any strong winds with an easterly component. You also need to arrive early, especially in high season, as the jetty quickly fills up with yachts and fishing boats.
It is possible to anchor off San Pietro, at least 200 metres clear of the jetty to allow the hydrofoils and ferries room to manoeuvre. In unsettled weather or with any winds from E it is wise to clear out.
Good holding in sand (5m) in Baia Milazzesse but exposed to everything from the South. Then walk 15 minutes along a lovely path North Eastwards to the town.
Half an hour’s walk S from the jetty brings you to Punta Milazzese, where there is a Bronze Age settlement consisting of the remains of 23 huts. Finds from the settlement are exhibited in the museum in Lipari. Otherwise, the island is pleasant for walking around, exploring the coves and beaches, or simply chilling out and imagining you are a celebrity (even if you’re not).
“The Aeolian Islands”
Lat/Long – 38.7925° N, 15.2149° E
Stromboli, the easternmost of the Aeolian Islands in Italy, is also the most famous on account of its continually active volcano, the lava stream of which is visible at night from 30 miles or more. Not for nothing is the island’s nickname ‘The Lighthouse of the Mediterranean’. Unlike Italy’s two other volcanoes classed as ‘active’, Mt Etna and Vesuvius, Stromboli never sleeps. The seas around are often coated with a fine layer of pumice and the famous Sciara del Fuoco (Stream of Fire) on the island’s NW flank is a popular tourist attraction during the hours of darkness. The last major eruption on the island was in 1930, as a result of which the population today is barely a tenth of its former size. As late as 1996 a smaller eruption injured a number of people and a further disturbances in 2009 and 2010 caused the summit to be closed to visitors for several weeks. Just over a mile NE lies the islet of Strombolicchio, a volcanic ‘plug’ which is all that remains of an earlier volcano.
The coast of Stromboli is steep-to and there are no dangers in the approach (other than, of course, the remote risk of being hit by one of the occasional volcanic bombs emitted by the volcano!).
Punta Lena –Submarine cables; anchoring and fishing is prohibited in the area. Punta delle Chiappe – Punta Labronzo Navigation is prohibited within 400 m from the coast.
There are no sheltered harbours on the island and visiting yachts need to anchor off the two small hamlets of San Bartolemeo or San Vicenzo at the NE end of the island or the hamlet of Ginostra at the SW end of the island. None of the anchorages is suitable in anything but the calmest of conditions. There is a jetty at San Vicenzo which can be used for embarking/disembarking passengers only.
Some buoys to the N of the jetty which can be picked up by visiting yachts (VHF 16/77 tel. 090.986390). Similar buoys have reportedly also been installed to the west of the harbour at Ginostra.
The prime reason for a visit to Stromboli is to view and possibly climb the island’s active volcano. The main paths start from the village of San Vicenzo, although another path ascends from Ginostrata. The round trip takes about four hours in total. Stout shoes and sensible clothing should be worn and you should take plenty of water (especially in summer). It is strongly advised to go only with a guide, particularly if you wish to explore the crater itself. Apart from the obvious dangers, an unguided ascent would probably invalidate your travel insurance.
You are required to hire a guide to hike to the summit. Unguided hikers can go to about 200m elevation. Guides lead groups up from the village center, usually departing a couple of hours before dusk so that the hike up is in daylight, but the summit is reached in dark for the spectacular volcanic display.
“The Aeolian Islands”
Lat/Long: 38.5665° N, 14.5597° E
The island of Filicudi lies 10 miles W of Salina and eight miles E of Alicudi in the Aeolian Islands of Italy. It consists of an extinct volcano, Mt Fossa Felci, joined by a low isthmus to Capo Graziano, a rocky promontory at the SE end of the island. Populated since Neolithic times, today’s 250-odd inhabitants survive from fishing and production of wine, capers, olive oil and vegetables, as well as some modest tourism. Most of the island is a nature reserve. On the SE side, at the island’s main settlement of Porto Filicudi, is a jetty whose outer end is suitable for yachts to berth in settled weather and a reasonably sheltered anchorage in the prevailing NW winds.
There are a number of rocks and shoals around the island and care needs to be taken in the approach. The island’s ferry port of Porto Filicudi lies on the E side of the low isthmus connecting the main part of the island to Capo Graziano.
There is a short jetty at Porto Filicudi, with depths of from 2.0 metres at the root to 8.0 metres at the end. Yachts can anchor moor along either side of the jetty wherever there is space, avoiding the section reserved for the hydrofoils and ferries. However, space here is often limited and you may need to anchor off, avoiding the numerous mooring buoys. Depths drop off quite quickly and you will be anchoring in 10.0 – 15.0 metres. Needless to say, the island should only be visited in settled weather.
Porto Filicudi – Anchor in 8.0 – 12.0 metres clear of the numerous mooring buoys. Holding is good in sand. Pecorini a Mare – on the S side of the island. Anchor in 5.0 – 8.0 metres. Holding is good in sand. There is usually a swell here in all but a flat calm.
There is only one paved road on the island, but numerous walking trails. One ambitious hike is up to the summit of Mt Fossa Felci to see the crater of the extinct volcano. Near Capo Graziano are the remains of a prehistoric village dating back to 1800 BC. By sea, one can visit the island’s Grotta del Bue Marina (Cave of the Monk Seal). It was once a refuge for the rare Monk seal (now sadly little in evidence). The impressive rock of La Canna, a rock pinnacle about half a mile off the NW end of the island, is worth a visit.
“The Aeolian Islands”
Lat/Long –38.5414° N, 14.3501° E
Alicudi, the second smallest and westernmost of the Aeolian Islands in Italy, lies just under eight miles W of Filicudi and 25 miles W of Lipari. It is an almost perfectly circular island, the tip of a long-extinct volcano, and its steep, difficult terrain and isolated position (together with frequent pirate incursions) have long made it a less attractive proposition for settlement than the other islands in the group. Nevertheless, there are settlement traces dating back to 1700 BC and archaeological evidence of habitation during the Roman period. Today, a mere 120 or so inhabitants extract a precarious living from fishing, small-scale agriculture, and even more limited tourism. There is a stub jetty at the island’s ferry port, Scalo Palomba, although most yachts generally prefer to anchor off in settled weather.
The island is everywhere steep-to and there are no dangers. There are no anchorages there than Scalo Palomba.
There is a small jetty at the island’s main port of Scalo Palomba, with depths of around 2.0 metres towards the end. However, space here is very limited and most yachts will need to anchor off. Depths drop off quite quickly and you will be anchoring in 10.0 – 15.0 metres. Needless to say, the island should only be visited in settled weather.
There no roads on Alicudi. The houses are clustered around the port area and connected by centuries-old stone pathways. Electricity and telephone connections were only introduced in the 1990s. The summit of the volcano makes a good challenge for the energetic.