Travel /
Sicilia

Sicilian Road Trip PT.3

The Sicilian Islands. A world apart. Fragments of rock and earth surrounded by cobalt blue seas. Unique realities, where nature is still their undisputed mistress.

 

In the Tyrrhenian there are the Aeolian Islands, with its seven sisters, and Ustica;

in front of the Trapani coast, the Egadi islands stand out; and then, suspended between Europe and Africa, the two pearls of the Mediterranean, or Pantelleria, the daughter of the wind, and Lampedusa with its beaches among the most beautiful in the world.

A small list of suggestions for your summer travels between these islands with unmatched cultures and histories.

 

PANTELLERIA

Also reachable by plane from Palermo / Catania or other Italian airports.

 

SLEEP 

 

Parco dei Sesi

Our favorite stay on the Island, a renewed property inspired by its owner’s passion for the island and art. Just 200 meters from the sea on an archeological park, enjoy private terraces, gardens, and rooftops with panoramic views. Read more about Parco dei Sesi here.

 

Tenuta Borgia 

Seven ancient dammusi, wisely restored to preserve the charm of these houses built according to the traditional tecnique of dry wall, are nestled in a Mediterranean park of twelve hectares. An old school charm countryside estate on the island of Pantelleria that feels just like a movie, to be exact the one of Italian film director Luca Guadagnino,  A Bigger Splash. 

 

Le Case del Principe a Pantelleria

Surrounded by the Mediterranean scrub, the Dammusi del Principe all have beautiful terraces with stunning views of the deep blue sea, reachable through a private staircase that leads to the cliff below and to the small bay of large pebbles.

 

Sikelia

First and only 5-star luxury hotel on the island. The suites are housed in one

structure of ancient Dammusi, the typical houses of Pantelleria. The restaurant is open to non-guests for an aperitivo on the rooftops at sunset or a gourmet dinner with the dishes prepared by chef Diego Battaglia.

 

WHERE AND WHAT TO EAT

 

Osteria il Principe e il Pirata

One of the best restaurants on the island to try Pantelleria dishes such as couscous, ravioli and the famous Pantelleria kiss.

 

Sesiventi

The favorite place for young people to have an aperitivo. We sit on the typical white roofs of the Dammusi, waiting for the sunset with a glass of Zibibbo.

 

WHAT YOU CAN’T MISS

 

Donnafugata

Do not miss a visit to the Donnafugata winery, in the Khamma district, to see the sapling vine up close and personal and taste the wines obtained from zibibbo, including the famous passito. Inside the estate there is also the Pantelleria Garden donated by Donnafugata to the FAI.

 

AEOLIAN ISLANDS + USTICA

You can reach the Aeolian Islands by hydrofoil from Milazzo or Naples. Not easy to get to but well worth the trip.

 

SALINA

 

SLEEP 

 

Hotel Signum – Malfa

A small village, expertly restored by the Caruso family, with attention to every tiny detail. Each room has its own individual style. Come for the panoramic terraces, overlooking Panarea and Stromboli, the Mixology Bar and young Martina Caruso’s Michelin starred restaurant. 

 

Hotel Punta Scario – Malfa

In a unique position, perched on the spur of rock that borders the beach below, the hotel looks like an amphitheater that surrounds a lux Mediterranean garden suspended over the sea.

 

 

WHERE AND WHAT TO EAT

 

Capofaro Locanda & Malvasia – Malfa

Capofaro was born from the Tasca d’Almerita family’s love for the vineyard and the sea, an inn surrounded by rows overlooking the sea, where Malvasia wine is produced (typical on the island).

 

Caravaglio Wines – Malfa

One of the best wineries on the island. The main grape varieties are Malvasia, Corinto and Nerello Mascalese. In addition to wine, the famous Salina capers are produced.

 

Franco Manca Pizza – Lingua

The first pizzeria of the famous “Franco Manca” brand opened outside the United Kingdom. On the menu there are only six pizzas all with the best products of the Aeolian Islands and Sicily.

 

Da Alfredo – Lingua

On the seafront of Lingua, Da Alfredo is the most famous place in the Aeolian Islands. Come to eat granita and cunzato bread (seasoned), two traditional Sicilian classics.

 

VOLCANO

 

SLEEP 

 

Therasia Resort

Set on the promontory of Vulcanello, with a breathtaking view overlooking everything

the archipelago. In addition to a world-class spa, at Therasia you find the Michelin starred gourmet restaurant of chef Giuseppe Biuso, Il Cappero, and I Tenerumi, the first vegetarian restaurant in the Aeolian Islands.

 

Paola Lantieri

Five hectares of vineyards in the only pristine valley of Vulcano. Her Malvasia delle Lipari is one of the best wines of the Aeolian Islands.

 

Asmundo di Gisira – Catania

Nestled between the Cathedral, the spectacular Baroque churches and ‘a Piscaria, the famous and colorful Catania fish market, Asmundo di Gisira is an exclusive and unique stay with a great attention to details. 

 

Monaci delle Terre Nere – Zafferana Etnea

A country boutique hotel that preserves the historical identity of what was once the home of the monks of the order of St. Anna.

 

Zash – Giarre Riposto

Country boutique hotel at the foot of Mount Etna with SPA and restaurant led by chef Giuseppe Raciti (1 Michelin star).

 

Shalai – Linguaglossa

Small charming hotel with 13 rooms in a late 19th century building in Linguaglossa. A Spa and the excellent 1 Michelin star restaurant of chef Giuseppe Santoro are available to guests.

 

Tenuta di Fessina – Castiglione di Sicilia

Among the many Etna wine resorts, this 17th century millstone, hidden among old vineyards, is certainly one of the most refined and fascinating ones.

 

USTICA

(by hydrofoil or ferry from the port of Palermo)

 

SLEEP 

 

Hibiscus

Family-run farm and farmhouse. Four comfortable apartments surrounded by greenery. In the store you can also buy wines and lentils from the island.

 

WHERE AND WHAT TO EAT

 

Il Faraglione

The most famous restaurant in Ustica, overlooking the marina, run by the young Tranchina brothers. Do not miss anything seafood related (in Ustica you eat the

best swordfish in Sicily) and enjoy music while sipping a cocktail after dinner. 

 

Carruba

Hidden in a stone alley near the ancient mill of Ustica, this one delicious restaurant is the kingdom of the young chef Martina Natale. Lots of vegetarian options made with products from the family garden, including the typical lentil soup. For those who love fish, on the other hand, there is barracuda, a real delicacy.

 

WHAT YOU CAN’T MISS

 

Specialità di Maria Cristina

Maria Cristina’s workshop, a historical memory of the island, is the ideal place to stock up on preserves, sauces, sauces, pesto, jams and typical products of Ustica

(lentils, capers, albacore, swordfish roe, traditional biscuits) to take home and give to friends.

 

EGADI ISLANDS

FAVIGNANA  

(reachable by hydrofoil or ferry from the port of Trapani)

 

SLEEP 

 

Nico del Pellegrino

A wild resort on a promontory overlooking the protected marine area of Egadi, the result of a skilful redevelopment of military barracks. At guests’ disposal are panoramic terraces, suggestive paths and a private cove equipped with sunbathing platforms and a ladder for unforgettable dips in the sea.

 

WHERE AND WHAT TO EAT

 

Camarillo Brillo

On the main street of Favignana, the place most adored by youth for an aperitivo or after dinner cocktails.

 

La Pinnata

Renowned emporium of Favignana where you can find various Sicilian excellences. Specialties are boards stacked with typical products such as tonnara, meats, cheeses and then the yummy cunzatu bread.

 

WHAT YOU CAN’T MISS

 

Favignana Tonnara Museum

A visit to the former Florio factory is essential for those who want to get to know the glorious history of the tonnara (a traditional tuna fishing system) and what it represented for the economy of the island of Favignana and its inhabitants. This museum was home to one of the largest tonnare in the Mediterranean. 

 

Lampedusa

(reachable by plane from Palermo / Catania or other Italian airports)

 

SLEEP 

 

La Calandra

The protagonists of hospitality in Lampedusa are the typical stone Dammusi. The most beautiful are those of the La Calandra resort, harmoniously inserted into the landscape, overlooking the cliff of the magical Cala Creta, suspended between rock, turquoise sea and African silence. Also available to guests is a mahogany Turkish gulet, the typical boat of the Mediterranean, for sea excursions.

 

WHERE AND WHAT TO EAT

 

Gemelli

Among the historical places of Lampedusa, at Gemelli the cuisine ranges from traditional spaghetti with sardines and involtini di pesce spada to more creative dishes such as the delicious crepes of fresh pasta stuffed with creamed grouper and prawns or the grouper rollè stuffed with shellfish and vegetables.