name, of greek origin, literally translates as ‘High-Sea Islands’.
They lie about 200km off the coast of Agrigento, between Malta and
Tunisia. The archipelago comprises Lampedusa, the main island with
a surface area of 33 square kilometres, and the two smaller Linosa
and Lampione. The latter, desert and only accommodating a lighthouse,
with its steep walls plunging to 60m depth and uncontaminated sea-floors,
is a real paradise for divers and snorkelers.
island of Lampedusa consists of a flat limestone platform which
culminates, at the northern end, in a series of dramatic cliffs.
The south coast, on the other hand, is jaggedly rugged as headlands
alternate with small, precipitous creeks sheltering sandy beaches.
to Africa than it is to Italy, the island is surrounded by a spectacular
seascape, with incredible colors ranging from transparent-blue,
to turquoise and emerald-green. On the island there is no farming
activity, its soil being white, dry and stony, much alike a desert.
The residents mostly live on tourism and fishing, as a considerable
flight anchored at its sheltered harbor will testify. Discoveries
across the territory attest to human settlements on Lampedusa dating
from the Bronze Age. In 1843, the island belonged to the aristocratic
Lampedusa family (one of its members, Giuseppe Tomasi, was the author
of the celebrated novel The Leopard) and was successively acquired
by King Ferdinand who had a penitentiary built and sent a handful
of people to reside there.
is a paradise for snorkelers and divers who can enjoy a rich and
unspoiled submerged world inhabited by corals, sponges, madrepores,
the colored parrot-fish and, by Capo Grecale at only 50m depth,
the lobster. Its mostly sandy sea-ground suddenly turns into a dark-green
due to the posidonia, a marine plant that is known as the Mediterranean
lung for its releasing oxygen in the water, giving life to beautiful
only city on Lampedusa, bearing the island’s same name, develops
around the main Roma street, notably crowded at breakfast time and
at night, it hosting a cluster of shops and cafés with outdoor
tables, where, in the summer, live music or entertainment shows
of the Island
boat tour of the island can be easily reserved at the harbor where
lots of boats are available at cheap prices. The tour usually departs
at 10.00am and returns at 5.00pm.
low and jagged coast of Lampedusa is rich in inlets and bays; among
these, is the Tabaccara, a splendid bay bathed by turquoise waters.
The northern shore features a high cliff with plenty of impressing
caves. Past the Baia della Madonnina (that got its name because
of a rock that resembles the Virgin Mary) is the Sacramento Cliff,
with a deepest grotto. In the North-Eastern end, known as Capo Grecale,
is a lighthouse visible from up to 60 miles away, where extends
a beautiful view of the coastal landscape. Then is the Grotta del
Teschio (the Skull Grotto), hiding a 15m long sandy-beach, reachable
by boat or along a rough path at right. Tourists are advised to
hire a bike or a mini-truck for a driving tour since roads of the
island are partly unpaved. From the centre of Lampedusa head eastwards
for the airport. The unpaved road running alongside the landing
strip passes by the many bays on the Southern side of the Island.
del Sole – (the Sun Tree) So is called the highest point on
Lampedusa (about 133m a.s.l.), where stands a circular structure
preserving a wooden crucifix. There, from a stone wall at the edge
of a steep slope, you can enjoy a dramatic sight of the sea. Tourists
are recommended to be extremely careful when near the edge. Returning
to the semi-asphalted road you will see an area of recent reafforestation.
At the end of the enclosing wall, follow the path soon leading to
a small iron cross. On your right, a promontory offers an enchanting
view of the Sacramento Cliff. From here, the small Lampione Island
is visible, on the left, in the distance. Return to the main road
and continue southward to the Rabbit Island’s Bay.
of the Isola dei Conigli – This broad bay is petticoated with
white cliffs and the most beautiful beach on the island; few metres
offshore nestles a little islet. The beach, with its finest sand,
gently slopes to transparent waters that splendidly turn to turquoise
and emerald green. Here the Caretta-Caretta turtle lays her eggs
during the breeding season, an event today threatened by the big
influx of tourists staying late at night when she usually comes
ashore for nesting.
here is the only habitat in Italy for the psammodromus algarus,
a particular type of striped lizard native to North-Western Africa,
namely Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco.
di Porto Salvo – It is a small shrine of ancient unknown date
and origin surrounded by a beautiful garden.
to reach Lampedusa – The simplest way to reach Lampedusa is
by plane, it being well-served by connections from Palermo and,
in the summer months, by directs flights from Milan, Bergamo, Rome,
Venice and Verona. A ferry service is also available from Agrigento.
Since this arrives late at night, tourists may encounter problems
to overnight, unless they have or hire a vehicle.
to buy – The island’s natural sponges are a favorite
souvenir for tourists. Whiter sponges, albeit attracting, may result
from a chemical treatment that shortens their life span. The darker
ones will definitely last longer. Linosa is especially renowned
for food “souvenirs”, like lentils and pomodorini, and
for its reed-baskets, much appreciated by tourists.
for dinner? – On the island are many small restaurants and
trattorias specialized in fish dishes, among which is a not-to-miss
couscous. The Trattoria-Pizzeria Da Nicola, by the Rabbit Islands’s
Bay is especially recommended.
is a pleasant volcanic island – hence its dark-grey color
– with three lofty cones that show a striking contrast with
the intense blue of the sky. The volcanoes, now extinct, give the
island a fairly sinister look. The only town consists of a collection
of lovely pastel-colored homes grouped around the island’s
small harbor. Tourists can enjoy excursions to the peaks or fascinating
boating tours. Its scanty population, once largely living by cattle-breeding,
today is mostly engaged in tourism-related businesses. The Vulcano
Mount, measuring 186 metres, is the island’s tallest peak.
The interior, mainly desert, features only a few cultivated grounds,
notably the so-called Fossa del Cappellano that is well-sheltered
from winds. Bordered by lava basalt jagged rocks, Linosa is considered
a paradise for divers and seawatchers who can enjoy richest wildlife
and vegetation (See Lampedusa, A Submerged World)
Caretta-Caretta (Loggerhead Sea Turtle)
peaceful creature, solitary throughout the year except for the breeding
season, lives in most temperate waters and nests every two or three
years. It comes ashore at night, digs a nest (between 40 and 75cm)
and soon covers it by using her hind flippers. This task accomplished,
she makes her way back to the sea. The clutch, mostly lost to predators,
hatches in a period between six and eight weeks. The hatchlings
are a favorite food of birds and humans. Once out to the sea, they
become a prey of fishes, who much appreciate their tender meat.
In 1978, the loggerhead was listed as a threatened species. Pollution,
habitat loss and pesticides are major reasons for its decline. The
loggerhead shares the same threats that menace all marine turtles.
its wide sandy beach, the Rabbit Island’s Bay is a major nesting
place for the loggerhead. The WWF Lampedusa Caretta Caretta Turtle
Center was recently established, coordinated by Daniela Freggi and
involving the activity of young students. For information about
joining or supporting it or for any enquiry please call the following
mobile phone no. 338 2198533.
Linosa, the black and warmer sandy beach of Gaia Pozzolana di Ponente
sees a majority of female hatchlings, due to the higher (above 30°
C) temperature of its sand. Temperatures under thirty degrees produce
nearly all male hatchlings. The Hydrosphera Rehabilitation Center,
centred on the Island of Linosa, have conducted interesting studies
on the loggerhead thanks to help from volunteers coming from across
the world. The center is equipped to provide emergency service.
The two centers on Lampedusa and Linosa form part of a broader National
project on sea turtles curated by the Department of Animal and Human
Biology at the La Sapienza University of Rome.
island’s wildlife include a remarkable number of Maltese Wall
Lizards and Shearwaters, a type of aquatic bird renowned for his
melancholic singing. The black sandy beach of Gaia Pozzolana is
a significant loggerhead nesting beach. Lovers of walking excursions
can stroll about the amazing paths leading to the three major peaks
of the island, namely the Red Mount, whose crater is covered with
cultivations, the Black Mount and the Vulcano Mount, from whose
top cars in Lampedusa are clearly visible when the wind blows from
tour of the Island – Boat tours can be scheduled
at the island’s harbor. The ride departs from the harbor,
and heads for the Fili, big offshore rocks that form a natural swimming
pool, bounded, ashore, by an impressive rocky cliff eroded by atmospheric
agents. Shifting waters and caper bushes are the main features of
the landscape. Past these rocks, there is a sight of the lighthouse
lying on an enchanting coastal strip. Towards the end of the tour
is Cala Pozzolana, a beach enclosed by steep rocky walls with colors
varying from yellow to red. This is the landing point for the ferry
is a desert islet of the Pelagian archipelago. Landmarked by a lighthouse
and steep cliffs plunging to 60m depth, Lampione has a pristine
environment and uncontaminated sea-floors. Its richest underwater
flora and fauna make it a real paradise for divers and snorkelers.
Alessandria Della Rocca
Campobello Di Licata
Palma di Montechiaro
Sambuca Di Sicilia
San Biagio Platani
San Giovanni Gemini
S. Margherita di Belice
S. Stefano di Quisquina
Valle Dei Templi
Casa Natale Luigi Pirandello
Scivoletto e Michelin Italia. Le foto sono di proprietà
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perseguita a norma di legge.
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Guide of Sicily
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