Sailing Sicily, Italy

The perfect combination of island hopping and coastal exploration
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. Starting from Portorosa, Palermo, or one of the smaller bases like the picturesque Capo d'Orlando, you can either explore the Sicilian mainland or head north towards the UNESCO-protected Aeolian Islands of Lipari, Vulcano, Salina, Panarea, Filicudi, Alicudi and the world-famous Stromboli island which is home to one of the most active volcanos in Europe.

A yacht charter in Sicily is ideal for intermediate, and even beginner sailors alike, as it offers relaxed yet exhilarating sailing in consistent winds and short sailing distances between anchorages.

Sicily and Aeolian Islands: Lipari, Vulcano, Salina, Panarea, Filicudi and Stromboli

Sicilian yacht charter bases are open from March and until November as weather conditions are very mild and pleasant throughout most months of the year. The best time to visit is definitely the summer months (June - August).

You can expect mainly Northern winds of 5-20 Knots and sunny days with the temperature ranging between 20 and 30 degrees Celcius.

This warm climate and easy line-of-sight navigation make Sicily the ideal year-round sailing destination, except for only a few months during winter.


Most yachts in Sicily are based in Portorosa and Palermo however, many charterers prefer the picturesque Capo d'Orlando as the starting point marina for their sailing holiday. 

Depending on the base that you will be starting from, you can choose one of the many Sicilian airports.

Catania Airport is 150 km far from Portorosa, Reggio Calabria Airport is 60 km far, and Palermo Airport is 210 km.

The closest airport to Palermo is naturally the airport of Palermo which is called "Falcone Borsellino Airport". Transfer Time to Portorosa - 1 hour and 30 mins, to Palermo - 30 mins, to Capo D'Orlando - 2 hours

Should you choose to head towards the Aeolian Islands, Stromboli should be at the top of your list. You can actually see the volcano's eruptions and lava from your boat at night, which is a stunning spectacle.

Sicily really is a foodie paradise and you shouldn't miss the local specialties such as the local pistachio pesto, "cucunci" and Sicilian arancini.

Lastly, and although most visitors head towards the Aeolian Islands, Capri, Pompeii, as well as the famous Vesuvius and Etna are all within easy reach.


Day 1. Arrival to Portorosa - the starting point of our itinerary
Portorosa has become an exclusive point of attraction for the most sophisticated tourist clientele. The marina is fully surrounded by greenery, ensuring tourists' relaxation and privacy.

This corner of the sea boasts the Blue Flag, an award given by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) to the marine locations that reach good quality standards for the waters and the services provided. It is, therefore, a port that perfectly combines respect for the environment and the needs of all travelers who anchor here. Welcome drinks on board, overnight at the marina.

Day 2. Portorosa → Vulcano
The Island of Vulcano is the southernmost of all Aeolian Islands and signals the start of the archipelago, welcoming tourists with an imposing volcano inactive since the 19th century.

One of the most amazing experiences in Vulcano is climbing up to the crater. You will literally find yourself thrown into a surreal world that almost looks like another planet. At the top, you will enjoy a spectacular view of all the other islands as well as a stunning sunset. The thermal mud pool is one of the main attractions and is a mandatory stop for a moment of self-care and relaxation.

What to see in Volcano by boat:

- Horse Grotto: located on the island's western coast, it is a rocky cove that reminds of a Greek theatre. The name originates from a boulder at the end of the cave that looks just like a horse's head;
- Venus' Pool: right next to the entrance to the above rocky vault is the Piscina di Venere, filled with tuff and basalt rocks. A stunning place that requires a mask and snorkel for a proper exploration!

Night on anchor.

Day 3. Vulcano → Lipari

This is the biggest of the Aeolian Islands. The Greeks used to call it Lipara, which means bright and fertile. This island is filled with architectural beauties, churches, unique lookouts, beaches, as well as an intense nightlife. The touristic area is located on the east side of the island and is divided into two villages: Marina Lunga and Marina Corta, both full of restaurants, shops, and nice promenades. The villages offer well-organized floating bridges and docks where you can moor and take advantage of their services. Not to be missed is a visit to Belvedere di Quattrocchi, the most evocative viewpoint on the island.

What to see in Lipari by boat:

- Capo Rosso: located on the northeastern side of the island, is an unspoiled paradise that can only be reached by boat. The wild beach of Gabbiano, a paradise for snorkelers, can only be reached by boat;

- Spiaggia Praia di Vinci: another spot located in the southern part of the island, perfect for snorkeling;

- Pumice Cave Bay: the old pumice cave located in this bay is now a white mountainside that extends towards the sea and creates an amazing white sand beach with turquoise waters.

Day 4. Lipari → Panarea → Stromboli

Panarea is one of the most renowned islands of the archipelago. This is the island of celebrities and amazing nightlife, with narrow streets full of boutiques, lounge bars, and discos. It's located about 1 hour and 40 minutes by boat from Lipari and it's a mandatory stop if you are sailing towards Stromboli. Panarea is surrounded by various islets, all worth a visit for some snorkeling in the beautiful waters, yet quite dangerous for sailing especially at night as they are not marked.

What to see in Panarea by boat:

- Cala Junco: denominated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its amazing natural beauty and the archeological site located nearby, it's a beautiful corner of paradise reachable by boat;

- Anchor between the islets of Bottaro and Lisca Nera: in the channel between the two islets, you will be able to anchor on a shallow sandy bottom and have a swim in the amazing waters. This point is particularly famous for the sulfate, hot air bubbles coming from the seabed that creates a natural jacuzzi.

From Panarea, you can easily reach the beautiful Stromboli. The charm of this island is given by the unique colors and scents: high cliffs and beaches of black sand, white Mediterranean houses, olive and citrus trees that rest on a rugged volcanic cone. Have a swim in the black waters and enjoy the characteristic town.

What to see in Stromboli by boat:

- Strombolicchio: this volcanic rock is only reachable by boat and is definitely worth a visit. Its high cliffs violently break into the sea, creating a breathtaking scenario. Will you spot the heart-shaped rock on the cliff facing south?

- Volcanic eruptions: sail at sunset on the west side of Stromboli to admire the enchanting lava explosions coming out of the craters and falling down the side of the mountain shaped by the lava rivers. We recommend checking sailing distance protocols before adventuring in this area.

Day 5. Stromboli → Salina

Salina is the greenest island of the Aeolian archipelago, famous for the natural reserve that occupies more than half of the territory. This island is covered in vineyards and other local cultivations. The town of Santa Marina hosts the largest and most equipped marina in the Aeolian Islands, and it's a beautiful village full of shops and restaurants where you can also visit the Museum of Wine. This is, in fact, the native land of the famous Malvasia. Salina is also known for its nightlife made of clubs and bars.

What to see in Salina by boat:

- Pollara Bay: this beautiful bay became famous after filming the movie "Il Postino" (the postman), it's a secret treasure of the island and one of the most beautiful in the archipelago.

Spend the night on anchor or at the port.

Day 6. Salina → Filicudi

Along with Alicudi, Filicudi is a paradise of unspoiled nature. As soon as you arrive at Filicudi Porto, you can admire the wild charm of the island. From here you can reach Monte Guardia, one of the most exclusive places of Filicudi as well as the only point from which you can enjoy the beautiful view of the six sisters and the Sicilian coast. Climb up to the promontory of Capo Graziano, about half an hour's walk from the port, to admire one of the most important places for wind archeology.

What to see in Filicudi:

- Ox Cave: also known as the green cave for its amazing watercolors. You can enter the cave with a small boat and admire the rock formations while swimming in emerald waters.

- Canna di Filicudi: a scenic and solitary 85-meter high stack in the middle of the sea, only reachable by boat. From here, you can also reach the nearby Montenassari rock.

Filicudi is the last stop of our 7-day itinerary around the Aeolian Islands. These enchanting places of unspoiled nature and immense beauty will steal your heart and will make you experience an amazing vacation.

Night on anchor.

Day 7. Alicudi → Portorosa

We are going to sail around 40 nm - should take about 7 hours. Getting to our home marina at Portorosa at 17:00, farewell party at one of the many great restaurants or onboard.

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