Take the ferry to Aeolian Islands and discover a group of islands, a volcanic archipelago on the north-eastern coast of Sicily, of unsurpassed natural beauty!
The archipelago of the Eolian Islands includes mainly the islands of Lipari, Vulcano, Salina, Alicudi, Filicudi, Stromboli and Panarea, where the latter includes five islets Basiluzzo, Dattilo, Lisca Nera, Bottaro and Lisca Bianca. Because of their particular volcanic terrain and their active volcanic activity they have rightly been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2020!
Visitors to the Aeolian Islands will discover wonderful beaches, coves, caves, dive in the sea discovering the vast wealth of the seabed and for those who love nature will hike on trails leading to the volcanoes! There is so much that the visitor will enjoy, visiting the Aeolian Islands that he will surely feel justified for his choice. In Lipari, the beautiful picturesque villages and its unique beaches, in Salina with its olive trees and its picturesque traditional restaurants with its fine local cuisine with its thick fresh capers, in Vulcano with its volcanoes, hence its name, where the view from the crater of the mountain to the other islands is magnificent, Alicudi with its unique beauty, Filicudi which is ideal for nature lovers, Panarea with its intense nightlife and its special atmosphere and Stromboli which has one of the most active volcanoes in the world with lava eruptions that offer a unique spectacle!
Start planning your trip to the Aeolian Islands, either from Sicily or Naples, in advance, because they are particularly busy during the summer months!
Ferry connections to Aeolian islands
Ferry connections to the Aeolian Islands are frequent and depart from the port of Milazzo in Messina and Palermo in Sicily. In addition there is a connection to the Aeolian Islands from the port of Reggio Calabria in Calabria and Vibo Valentia in Campania as well as from Naples! Some routes are available all year round while others are only available in the high season. Island hopping between the Aeolian Islands is also possible as there are many daily routes between the Aeolian Islands from 4 different shipping companies.
Bear in mind that during peak season there is a high demand so it is advisable to book your tickets some weeks in advance.
Popular ferry connections between the Aeolian islands
There are many ferry connections to travel between the Aeolian Islands even as a day trip.The largest of the Aeolian islands are Lipari and Salina with the most frequent connections. Several times to travel to the other islands of the Aeolian Archipelago you will need to stop at Lipari or Salina and take another ferry.
The most well known and popular ferry connections are the following:
- Lipari to Salina: there are daily crossings all year round to the two ports of Salina, Santa Marina and Rinella. The duration of the trip varies from 30 minutes to 2 hours depending on the shipping company
- Filicudi to Alicudi: there are about 3 routes per day with the duration of the journey varying between 25 and 50 minutes, depending on the crossing
- Salina to Filicudi: the connections from the ports of Salina (Santa Marina and Rinella) are daily to the island of Filicudi with the duration of the trip ranging from 30 minutes to 1.5 hours depending on the company and the port of departure
- Stromboli to Panarea: there are daily crossings from the two ports of Stromboli (Ginostra and Stromboli) to Panarea with journey times ranging from 25 minutes to 1 hour and 30 minutes
Please note that for the above mentioned crossings, sailing durations and frequency may vary from season to season! So we suggest you check through our online booking system in order to receive updated information on schedules and departures!
Ports of the Aeolian islands
Regarding the ports of the Aeolian islands, it is important to mention that each island can have 1 or more ports, for instance Salina and Stromboli have 2 ports. We would advise you to make sure you choose the right port for Salina (Santa Marina or Rinella) as well as for Stromboli (Ginostra or Stromboli). Among the ports of the Aeolian islands, the largest and busiest is the port of Lipari.
Transportation options in the Aeolian islands
The transportation options while you are in one of the Aeolian islands are by car, by bus, by taxi and in most of them (except Lipari which is the largest) on foot or by bicycle.
In the Aeolian islands of Salina, Lipari and Filikoudi during the high season there are restrictions on cars while in some others they are usually not allowed. Therefore, if you can avoid taking your car it would be more convenient.
In most Aeolian islands it is possible to take a bus. For more information, you can visit Buses in Aeolian Islands.
In most of the Aeolian islands, it is possible to travel by taxi. You can find few by the time you get off your ship or by asking the port information booth.
On foot and by bicycle
Most of the islands are easy to visit on foot if you like walking or by bicycle which is an ideal solution with many agencies renting bicycles. The only island where this option is not possible is Lipari due to its size.
For more information about the means of transport in the Aeolian Islands, you can visit the websites of the four municipalities: Municipality of Lipari, Municipality of Santa Marina Salina.
Vacations in Aeolian islands
Vacations in the Aeolian Islands are a unique experience, as they are literally one of the treasures of Italy with wonderful natural beauty and each of them has something special to offer to every visitor, whether visiting them as part of a day trip, for the weekend, or to spend a whole holiday! The fact that visitors can easily travel all year round to the Aeolian Islands from the main Italian ports of Milazzo and Messina and in summer from Palermo, Naples and Reggio Calabria is a major advantage.
Starting from the largest island of Aeolus, Lipari, the visitor can enjoy beautiful beaches, picturesque villages and unique sights such as the castle! Moreover, due to its size, the choice of accommodation is more than enough compared to the other islands.
Filicudi, with 246,000 years of history, is the oldest of the Aeolian Islands and is an ideal destination for nature lovers and fans of hiking, sea and mountain enthusiasts.
The island of Vulcano with its 4 volcanoes and hot springs offers wonderful landscapes and unique opportunities for relaxation.
Another pleasant surprise is the island of Salina which is characterized by its olive trees, its rich nature and its traditional cuisine!
Stromboli has its own way of fascinating the visitor as it has one of the few active volcanoes in the world and its volcanic eruptions offer an impressive spectacle!
The smallest in size but not in beauty, the island of Panarea stands out with its white traditional houses, its wild nature, while at the same time it is considered to be the island of Aeolus with intense nightlife!
And for the end, we will mention the most unspoilt and wild island of the Aeolian archipelago, Alicudi, which is ideal for travelers who want to detox from the intense rhythms of the city and relax in nature. What anyone visiting Alicudi should know is that due to the absence of roads, vehicles are not allowed.
Visiting seven of the most famous islands of the Aeolian Archipelago is a unique experience and the traveler can do island hopping as a day trip since there are daily, frequent connections between them.
Sightseeing in Aeolian islands
The islands of the Aeolian Archipelago were rightly declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000 for their natural beauty, their volcanic character, their unique architecture, their picturesque villages and their black sand beaches.
There are many interesting sights worth visiting, some of the most important are listed below:
- Aeolian Regional Archaeological Museum - Lipari
- Stromboli Volcano - Stromboli
- Old Church of Quattropani (Chiesa Vecchia di Quattropani) - Lipari
- Cathedral of St Bartholomew - Lipari
- Belvedere Quattrocchi - Lipari
- Cala Junca - Panarea
- Grotta del Bue Marino - Filicudi
- Prehistoric Village of Capo Graziano - Filicudi
Beaches in Aeolian islands
In the beautiful Aeolian islands with their volcanic nature you will be able to find impressive picturesque coasts with unique landscapes, sometimes rocky and sometimes black sandy beaches.
Below are some of the best beaches to visit during your holiday in the Aeolian Islands:
- Spiaggia Bianca (Lipari): one of the most beautiful beaches in Lipari with an impressive white color due to the pumice that exists in it. It is accessible on foot or by boat
- Sabbie Nere (Vulcano): an iconic beach known worldwide because of the special reflection created by the background of lava stones combined with its crystal clear waters. It is also ideal for children because of its shallow waters
- Cala Junco Cove (Panarea): is a small bay surrounded by steep cliffs with crystal clear waters, ideal for snorkeling. It is also accessible on foot and worth visiting to enjoy the sunset
- Forgia Vecchia (Stromboli): is considered the most beautiful of the Aeolian archipelago and is a beautiful black pebble coast around a quiet bay surrounded by the green slopes of the volcano. With Mount Stromboli in the background and the ocean in front of you the view from this beach is unbeatable. The beach is accessible only on foot
- Scario Beach (Salina): a small beautiful beach with pebbles surrounded by breathtaking cliffs. It is a relatively quiet beach even in high season and therefore unique for total relaxation and tranquility
- Alicudi Porto (Alicudi): is located near the port and its coast is wild consisting of small beaches and bays that can be admired by the visitor from the sea by boat
- Capo Graziano (Filicudi): consists of small beaches with pebbles and rocks that reach the sea. Ideally worth visiting by boat
- Fumarole Beach (Vulcano): black sand beach surrounded by mountains covered with bushes. Its waters are heated by the volcano and reach very high temperatures.
- Pollara Beach (Salina): undoubtedly one of the most beautiful beaches with dark stones and pebbles that create a unique feeling
Hotels in Aeolian islands
The islands of the Aeolian Archipelago offer a range of beautiful hotels, resorts and apartments with services that will satisfy the most demanding guests.
Some of the hotels worth visiting are the following:
- Hotel Mea: located a short walk from the historic center of Lipari, where you can enjoy the panorama of the bay of Marina Lunga and the castle of Lipari
- Hotel Villa Enrica: is the most romantic hotel located on the island of Lipari in a hilly area, close to the center with beautiful rooms furnished in windy style and a wonderful view.
- Therasia Resort: a luxury hotel on the island of Vulcano, with magnificent suites, infinity pool and Michelin-starred restaurant
- Hotel Signum: located in the green hills of Salina, a hotel with unique suites and a lovely garden
- Il Gabbiano Relais: an original accommodation in Stromboli with luxurious fully equipped facilities and services of a hotel
- Hotel Borgo Eolie: set on a tranquil hillside 500 m from Lipari’s historic center. With traditional Aeolian architecture and many facilities
- Hotel Carasco: is 700 m away from Lipari town center, with an an exclusive position beside the sea , ideal for couples and for nature lovers as organizes a variety of trekking activities , geo-vulcanologico excursions to the infamous Mount Etna and other volcanoes and sea excursions
- Hotel Villa Augustus: a fully equipped completely renovated ancient villa located in Lipari city center with a large garden, a restaurant and a spacious panoramic terrace with views of the coast
- Stromboli Suite Apartment: offers various facilities and a beachfront accommodation 200 m from Spiaggia Scari
- Hotel Al Togo Fitness & Relax: is located in the center of Vulcano Ponente with nice rooms with traditional hand-painted tiles
- L'Orchidea delle Eolie: is located in Vulcano with fully equipped rooms and incredible mountain and garden views
Best things to do and see in the Aeolian islands
In northeastern Sicily are located the Aeolian Islands and consist of one of Italy’s greatest natural and cultural treasures.There are many things to do or see in the Aeolian Islands, from interesting day trips by boat, walks to volcanoes and visits to places with amazing views!
Hereunder, you will find some of our suggestions for best things to do and see in the Aeolian Islands:
Plan a walk to Cave di Promice , a canyon made up of pumice stone.
Make a tour by boat from Lipari to other Aeolian Islands!
Visit one of the plenty of vineyards found on the island and taste the sweet Malvasia dessert wine.
Walk up to Fossa delle Felci, a nature reserve inside an extinct volcano, for fantastic views of the island and nearby Panarea and Stromboli on the horizon.
See its impressive active craters as well as healing mud baths and black sand beaches
Hiking Trekking on Vulcano Island.