Few islands in Italy are more beautiful than the Aeolian Islands of Sicily. This group includes Panarea and Lipari as well as Salina. This area has crystal-clear water and volcanic origins that make it a fascinating place to visit, including dramatic cliffs and thermal springs.
You want to go there? These are the three essential facts about the Isole Eolie, as it is called by Italians.
Lipari is the best choice for your base island. Panarea? Salina?
It’s easy to island hop the Aeolians. But where you stay can have a huge impact on your experience.
The most visited island is Lipari. The town, the only one of its kind in the Aeolians, has many charms. However, it is also home to souvenir shops and tourist restaurants. Lipari is a great place to find an apartment or hotel on a tight budget, especially if you don’t plan ahead.
Salina is the 2nd-largest and most beautiful island. It also has a natural preserve, olive and grape vines. Although Il Postino was shot here, it isn’t as popular as Panarea or Lipari.
Panarea is tiny, exclusive and very expensive. However, it’s stunning. It is also home to the most exclusive nightlife, with a handful of bars and clubs that are the main hangouts for the wealthy and famous.
Although the other islands aren’t as popular as overnight stays, they can be used as day trips. The volcano is a small island that gave rise to the term “volcano” due to its presence of many volcanoes. It’s geologically interesting, but there are no restaurants or hotels. Stromboli is also a great day trip, and well worth it for its active volcano.
Remote Filicudihas some small villages but not much infrastructure for visitors. Alicudiis a mountain rising out of the sea with approximately 100 residents.
Visit the volcanoes and views, not the beaches.
The dramatic coastlines of the islands are spectacular and often dramatic. However, there are very few beaches. Sand beaches are even harder to find since most of the beaches are rocky. From June through September, all accessible, sandy beaches on the islands can be found with sunbathers.
The lack of sandy beaches does not mean you have to skip the Aeolians. There are many ways to have fun in the sun, from hiking volcanoes, and snorkeling off the coast, taking a break at stunning views of the ocean, swimming in volcanic thermal baths, enjoying natural mud spas, and even relaxing in breathtaking overlooks of the ocean. The best way to take in the sun and clear water is to…
Rent a boat
Although the main islands are beautiful, tiny coves, outcroppings, and islands can be found in the Mediterranean. They are only accessible by boat. This is also a great way to enjoy the water because there are not many sandy beaches.
You don’t want to take just ferries to get from one island to another. Instead, plan to spend at least one day on a smaller boat. You should reserve your boat as soon you reach your base island to avoid disappointment in the high season. You can rent a boat, but you won’t be able to take the boat around on your own. Instead, you can choose one of the smaller boats that will stop more often and allow you to get in the water.