Is summer over soon? Not on these islands!
From seething mud lakes to picture-perfect fishing villages: each of the seven inhabited Aeolian Islands is unique in its own way. The archipelago near Sicily is a worthwhile holiday destination until well into autumn.
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Dhe Aeolian Islands, north of Sicily in the Mediterranean Sea, have been a Unesco World Heritage Site for 20 years. The archipelago is a worthwhile holiday destination well into autumn. Bathing is still done in November, hikers climb extinct and not extinct volcanoes or walk between vineyards and caper fields.
Each of the seven inhabited islands is unique in its own way. Salina, for example, consists of two volcanoes that are almost 1,000 meters high. Both are long extinct, but their black, mustard-yellow or bright red rocks shape the spectacular landscape.
The locals are proud of the beauty of their island, but kept it to themselves for a long time. They did not want mass tourism, and so the creation of tourist infrastructure was deliberately neglected. In the meantime, there are more visitors, but places like Malfa still seem sleepy and pleasantly provincial even in the high season, especially in Corona summer 2020.
Some consider Salina to be the most exciting of the Aeolian Islands. The neighboring islands have their own charms and invite you to go island hopping:
Vulcano: Bathing in Schammseen
Admittedly, the island smells like rotten eggs. Hot steam flows from various holes in the ground, in places Vulcano looks like a bizarre moonscape. All kinds of sulfur springs feed natural mud lakes, whose healing properties were already appreciated by the Romans and which locals and tourists serve as a health-promoting meeting point. You just have to pinch your nose there.
You can bathe more elegantly in the Therasia Resort Sea & Spa, which is considered to be one of the best wellness hotels south of Rome.
Lipari: The largest of the Aeolian Islands
On the largest of the Aeolian Islands there are cars, schools, a hospital, an archaeological museum and a long sandy beach with bathing establishments. There are also plenty of hotels and pensions, trattorias and cafés.
In the evening, when the day-trippers are gone, you meet at the port of the pretty fishing village of Marina Corta and have an aperitivo in peace. Then the best thing to do is to order shrimp tartare and pistachio pasta in one of the restaurants.
Stromboli: an active volcano and black beaches
When you think of Stromboli, you think of the film of the same name by Roberto Rossellini with Ingrid Bergman in the leading role. Almost 400 people live on the island in two enchanted villages at the foot of a volcano that regularly spits lava.
Sun worshipers are drawn to the black beaches of Ficogrande, where the chic hotel “La Sirenetta” with a pool and a view of the Strombolicchio rock is located. Gourmets appreciate the Ristorante “Punta Lena” with the best island cuisine and a terrace directly above the cliffs.
Panarea: excursions by boat
Although the postcard-pretty island doesn’t have a single beach, it does have a large number of offshore islets and enough fishing boats that can be hired for excursions. Insiders buy lunch in the mini market and later dive into the crystal clear water around the rocks of Basiluzzo, Dattilo or Lisca Bianca.
Panarea is also suitable for people watching: If someone in the “Hotel Raya” looks like Naomi Campbell, it’s Naomi Campbell, and in the “Bar del Porto” you can see the who’s who of the Sicilian hotspot having an evening aperitif.
Filicudi: A rugged rock with beautiful grottos
The island is a roughly ten square kilometers large, rugged rock. The three volcanic cones are extinct, during their active time they gave Filicudi a number of beautiful grottos. Almost exclusively Italians holiday here with their own villa and boat, so it’s quiet.
The port village of Pecorini, which consists of a few houses, can only be reached by water. The restaurant and beach club “La Sirena” offers the only public social meeting place far and wide.
Alicudi: 150 residents and a couple of donkeys
Those who find it too stressful on Filicudi can go to Alicudi. Only 150 residents and a few donkeys live there.
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