The Aeolian or Lipari Islands are seven small inhabited Italian islands off the northern shore of Sicily, close to the tip of Italy’s toe. The islands are popular as a holiday destination, offering sunshine, beaches and natural beauty. The largest island of the archipelago is Lipari. The other islands include Vulcano, Salina, Stromboli, Filicudi, Alicudi, Panarea and Basiluzzo. The Aeolian Islands were formed by volcanic activity and two of the islands are still active volcanoes.
The islands are served by ferries and hydrofoils from a number of Italy’s ports. The main port of departure for the Aeolian Islands is Milazzo, situated on the northern shore of Sicily. There are frequent fast ferry services from Milazzo, and this is the most convenient and reliable port to aim for. However, there are also services from Palermo and Messina in Sicily and from Reggio di Calabria in mainland Italy. During the summer tourist season, there are also occasional ferries from other local ports – these are often designed as day trips to the islands, but may be a feasible option for travelers wanting to stay longer.
The island of Lipari has lots to offer including spectacular views, wide choice of activities and the busiest port for hydrofoil and ferry connections. You can make daytrips to the other islands from here. Panarea is the most chic island, small and exclusive with prices to match. Stromboli volcano located here is for thrill-seekers wanting to climb the volcano to see eruptions. The volcano offers famous sulphurous-smelling mud baths and incredible beaches. Salina Island is green and natural and a good destination for a quieter stay. Alicudi and Filicudi islands are the most remote.
In order to explore each of the islands thoroughly, you would really need to base yourself overnight on each. Ferry timetables and tourist excursions can leave you feeling rushed on day trips. Obviously, though, this wouldn’t make for a very relaxing holiday, so most tourists prefer to choose one island base and pay short visits to the others.
Location: Tyrrhenian Sea
Sights: Scalata al Cratere, Stromboli Volcano, Chiesa Vecchia di Quattropani
Cuisine: You should try: Granite and sorbetti, chocolate, dolci, arancini
Hotels: Therasia Resort, Capofaro Malvasia & Resort, Hotel Ravesi
Shopping: You can visit the following shops: Erboristeria Panacea, A Putia du Souvenir U Segretu, Ferraino Souvenirs, Tentazioni souvenirs