A little piece of heaven, Aeolian Islands, are well known to tourists and they attract up to 200.000 visitors per year from all over the world. Formed by volcanic activity, the Aeolian Islands consist of seven small, inhabited islands off the northern shore of Sicily in the Tyrrhenian Sea. The islands are grouped together as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. As much as they are popular as a beach and a sun destination, Islands also attract a large number of thrill seekers considering that two of the islands are still active volcanoes.
How do I get there?
Getting to the Aeolian Islands is a multi-stage journey. However, considering the beauty awaiting on the islands, it is worth the time. There is no airport at any of the Islands and they are connected with land by ferries from some Italian ports. The main port of departure for the Aeolian Islands is Milazzo, that has frequent fast ferry services. Departure is also possible from Messina in Sicily and Reggio di Calabria in mainland Italy. The two major ferry companies providing ferry services to the islands are Siremar and Liberty Lines. The nearest airports are Catania, Palermo, Reggio Calabria and Lamezia Terme. If you want to reach the Aeolian Islands without flying, you can travel to Naples by train and then catch a ferry to the islands.
Which island to choose?
The largest of the seven Islands is Lipari. It is the biggest and liveliest of them. However, all others are attractive as well, depending on what kind of a vacation you are looking for. Lipari has an excellent choice of accommodation, most ferry connections and you can easily make day trips to the other islands from there. For nature lovers, a good choice would be Volcano and Stromboli. Stromboli is for those who want to climb the volcano, and Volcano is famous for its sulphurous-smelling mud baths, a gently fuming volcano, and beaches. The chicest is Panarea, small and private with prices to match. Salina is all green and natural and an excellent destination for a quieter stay. Alicudi and Filicudi are the furthest ones. The visit includes two extinct volcanoes emerging from the sea and transport by donkey.
Things to do
Being an adventurer or not, you cannot visit the Aeolian Islands without seeing the eruptions on Stromboli. Whether you choose to hike up the volcano or observe it safely from a boat, it is truly a remarkable experience.
Island hopping is also very enjoyable as each island has a unique story to tell. With picturesque villages, bays, hidden beaches with volcanic sand or stones it is perfect for photographs.
You can also choose recreational walking and enjoy amazing landscapes and sea views. Islands Volcano and Stromboli also have popular routes to the top of the volcano craters that will allow you to see lava eruptions and gas emissions from close by.
However, if you came just for some relaxation and quiet time, all of the Islands have great beaches at disposal where you can enjoy and let go.
Manigo Team, May 2017