Sailing in Sicily

Our sails are able to take in the sun, wind and sea. It is a great experience to sail on a boat holiday to Sicily.

Luffing, bearing away and anchoring while waiting for becalmed. Retire from metropolitan living and return to the rhythms of the natural world. Learn from the skipper how to recognize the blowing winds and currents and where the best bays and water are.

Even a one-day tour can be enjoyable and full of surprises. For a taster of the Aeolian Islands or Palermo to Mondello, the Vulcano Island is a great place to start your day.

If you have more time, there is an alternative route that takes 6 days within the Eolian Islands, north east Sicily, and 5 days to the Egadi Islands, in the ocean in front of Trapani or Marsala.

Have fun sailing!

From Milazzo to Vulcano – One Day Tour

Volcano must be visited if you want to sail the Aeolian Islands. This is the island closest to the mainland (Port of Milazzo), and it is a great destination for those with limited time. We recommend that you contact a charter company to rent a fully equipped sailboat with skipper, professional crew and a captain.

We depart early in the morning at the port of Santa Maria Maggiore. After about three hours of sailing, we arrive on the island of Vulcano . We anchor on the island’s southern coast and are protected from the winds blowing from the northeast so that we can swim in the clear waters of Mulberry Beach . This black sandy beach is overlooked by a charming lighthouse. We can see the Saracen coast, Mount Etna and more.

View from Vulcano-PH robianni

We decide, later on, to go north-west towards the Grotta del Cavallo, which is named for its former use as a sanctuary for seahorses. We will be leaving the charming Pool of Venus. Let’s enjoy a relaxing, long soak in these natural pools with shallow, clear waters. According to legend, the goddess used these waters to regain her virginity.

After a quick lunch prepared by the crew, we move on to the Fumaroles Beach. This is a real Natural Spa. The waters of this beach are heated by bubbles of sulfurous steam, which can reach very high temperatures due to active fumaroles located a few meters below sea level.

On the other hand, the area of the mudbaths is known for its healing properties as well as for its body care.


Vulcano mud baths -ph Iganzio Mannarano

From Palermo to Mondello and Capo Gallo – One Day Tour

We set sail from Marina di Villa Igiea, Palermo, heading towards Capo Gallo. This protected area is located between the fishing villages Mondello e Sferracavallo.

We hired a sailboat with skipper. We anchor off the shore to enjoy the calm waters of the Nature reserve. For snorkelers or children who enjoy exploring the underwater world, we recommend that snorkelers and children be outfitted with masks and snorkels so they can see the many species of marine life found in these waters.


Mondello beach Palermo – ph robianni

After a short break, we sail to the Gulf of Mondello where we can take a dip in the crystal clear water with a sandy bottom. We are standing in front of a once small fishing village that was transformed – in the early 1900s – into a resort on the seaside with many villas in Art Nouveau. This includes the famous beach club “Charleston”.


Aeolian Islands Cruise, 6 Days

You must spend at least 6 days to enjoy a relaxing and satisfying sailing holiday in the Aeolian islands. You should enjoy the Islands tour by boat after you have learned the timing.

It is always a good idea for this type of holiday to use a professional charter company. High season is very windy in the Aeolian Islands. There are not many ports available. Sometimes you will need to anchor or shelter in shallow bays.


Basiluzzo and Stromboli on back – Ph robianni

Day 1 Early in the morning we depart Portorosa to head towards the first island: Lipari. is about 16 miles from our destination. It is almost mandatory to swim in front the Faraglioni and the Cava Pomice. Continue swimming until you reach the Spiaggia Bianca. Small, white pumice stones will float on top of the blue water.


Lipari Cava pomice – ph robianni

We dock at one of the ports on the island and take a stroll through the historic centre of Lipari. We visit the Archaeological Park, the Museum, and the Castle. We wander the streets and stop for a mulberry granita, brioche and cream, or warm doughnuts with ricotta. As in all Aeolian Islands the bougainvillea climbs on the white walls and blue doors and windows to create an impression of colours that excite the soul.

Day 2 Panarea is 12 mi from Lipari. Stop at Cala Junco for a swim, then move on to Lisca Bianca or Dattilo. These beautiful beaches are often used for commercial advertising.


Gli isolotti di Panarea – ph. Paolo Barone

Panarea is home to an abundance of underwater fumaroles. You can see them by snorkeling.

We stop at Cala degli Zimmari for a rest, which is the only sandy beach on the island. It’s also known as “Red Beach” because of its striking reddish sand.

We can’t miss taking a stroll through the village and its many boutiques once we are on the island.

There are moments of relaxation and social life that alternate with entertainment and social life. Panarea’s sunset is a beautiful moment. Some prefer to spend the sunset in their boat, while others prefer to enjoy it ashore on one of the beautiful terraces at the clubs scattered around the island.

The chillout sounds blend harmoniously with sunset colors, creating an elegant atmosphere. This is the most famous gathering spot on the island. Here, until the early hours in the morning, the sounds of the chillout clubs blend harmoniously with the colors of dawn, creating an elegant atmosphere.

Day 3 We enjoy Panarea’s seaside first thing in the AM and have the chance to sample the finest malvasia and peach granita in the world. We soon move on to the island of Stromboli which is only 14 miles away. The waters of Strombolicchio are the best place to swim. Other options include Scari or Ginostra.

We moor to the South side of the island and then we travel through the narrow streets to discover the village. We walk through the narrow streets of Stromboli to reach the Church of San Vincenzo. Here we have a stunning view of the sea. Or, let’s take a charming guided tour up to the top of Stromboli’s crater.


Stromboli – ph Massimo Calcagno

If there is an active eruption, we might be able to swim in the harbor at night, right next to the Sciara del Fuoco. This position allows us to see the spectacular spectacle of lava flowing down into the sea from the top crater.

Nights are unique because of the unique charm created by the red volcano, the silver moon, and the dark sea.

Day 4 We sail along 22 miles from Stromboli to reach Salina.


Salina – ph Iganzio Mannarano

You should not miss a visit Valdichiesa where you can see the sanctuary for the Madonna del Terzito which dates back to 17 century. Or an excursion to the Fossa delle Felci. The granita, as well as the pane cunzato hot loaf, seasoned with olive oils and local foods, are a must-see.

Stock up on cucunci and capers – there are plenty of them around the island. Also, stock up on malvasia, an island’s traditional wine made from raisin grapes.


Pani cunzatu – Salina

The sunset at Pollara is a beautiful view from a prehistoric crater that was partially sunken. Enjoy an aperitif at one of the many local bars before you order your seafood meal.

Day 5 After sailing 14 miles, we stopped at Filicudi. is a wild, unfashionable island.

Swimming and lunch are required in Punta Perciato. This is a lava promontory that has been breached by the sea. The Grotta del Bue Marino is not far away. It was named by the local fishermen as the refuge for the monk seal.

After passing the Perciato, we stop at the beach before continuing to the amazing rocks with stunning shapes, located just a few minutes from Canna.


Filicudi la Canna – ph Ignazio Mannarano

We will be diving in the charming seabed populated with fishes from all species near this basalt cliff.

We explore the village after docking at the harbour of Filicudi or at pier Pecorini a Mare. This island is the farthest from the Sicilian coast. The night view is spectacular: the Milky Way can be seen to the naked eye and the starry sky is vivid.

Day 6 Let’s stop at Vulcano Island, which is approximately 22 miles from Filicudi, and land at Porto di Levante. It is essential to visit the island, as well as stop at The therapeutic mud. This natural spa is a true natural SPA. We cannot express the beauty of the view from the top of the crater. It is best to wear comfortable trekking shoes. Let’s ride along the coast to see the caves hidden beneath the sulphurous gases. (See also the one-day tour from Milazzo and Vulcano).


Climbing up to the crater Vulcano – ph robianni


Trapani, San Vito lo Capo, Isole Egadi – 5 Days Itinerary

Day 1 Our starting point is the port from which our boat can easily travel under full sail to reach San Vito Lo Capo after 38 miles.

The “pearl in Costa Gaia”, San Vito Lo Capo, is famous for its 1 km long, white, sandy beach. It is considered one of the most beautiful beaches in Italy. It is safe to swim or explore the seabed here, as there are no currents.

Let’s go to the charming ArabNorman Shrine. It’s impossible not to visit the historic Tonnara del Secco, a tuna factory.

This seaside hamlet is known for its food culture which is usually Arabic. It is mostly based on fish and Cous cous.

Day 2 We set out for Levanzo (about 24 miles), the first Egadi Islands. Staying at anchor on roadstead, we take a dip into the charming Cala Dogana. This is the only residential area on the Island. We also see the equally stunning Cala Tramontana. Cala Calcara, Cala Minnola. We must not miss the opportunity to see the Grottoof Genovese where paintings that date back to the Neolithic era have been discovered.

You should not miss a sunset dinner at one of these restaurants. Also, don’t forget to try the cabbuci (stuffed hot bread) made in the levanzara style.

Day3 Marettimo is 12 mile away and the most remote of all the Egadi Islands. It is home to the most unique Mediterranean fauna and vegetation, thanks to its many caves, including the Camel Caver.

There are many bays on the Island with beautiful pebble beaches that can only be reached by boats. Divers have the chance to see some spectacular backdrops. One of the most memorable experiences is scuba diving off the coast. Here you can see the wreckage of a mercantile.


Isole Egadi Marettimo – ph. Paolo Barone

Let’s see the Case Romane archaeological site, the small Byzantine church and the castle of Punta Troia on a high promontory. From here you can enjoy spectacular views.

A stroll through the streets of the centre can’t be completed without a delicious seafood dinner. The pasta with lobster of Egadi is very popular.

Day 4 From Marettimo, you can reach the island of Favignana within 12 miles by sailing. Monte Santa Caterina is the dominant point of the island. This is where the ancient Tonnara ritual takes place every May.


Isole Egadi Favignana – ph. Paolo Barone

These dishes include tuna meatballs, spaghetti and bottarga (salted and dried tuna eggs), sweet and tart “tunnina”, (Tuna in brine), and fried or salted” “lattume”, (seminal fluid from Tuna).

The Palazzo Florio is a must-see, as well as its museum. It is surrounded with stunning coves such as Cala Rossa and Cala Azzurra. This is where one of the main activities on the island was performed: the extraction of the tuff.

Day 5 After 9 miles of navigation, we return to Trapani. There are many interesting places to see and delicious flavours to be discovered. Let’s enjoy a wine tasting in one of Marsala’s wineries.

You still have time to visit the Ettore e Infersa Saltpans. These three operating mills stand out in the Stagnone Lagoon right next to the island of Mothia.


Le Saline di Marsala al tramonto – ph. Paolo Barone

You can spend more time in the area by visiting Segesta or Selinunte. These are important reminders of Greek time.

This area of Sicily is home to many oil mills that offer tastings and lunches featuring traditional Sicilian cuisines. Unusual oil ice cream is the place’s speciality.

The itinerary ends with a little tidbit. It includes the historic village of Erike, and its pastries. (Don’t forget the famous hot custard filled pastry with icing sugar). Its ceramic shops and colourful carpets.

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LabGis Osservatorio Turistico Regione Siciliana. Regional web map showing the ports, landing spots, lighthouses, and marine protected zones.

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