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Sicily is a great place for your next sailing vacation.  The primary destinations are the Aeolian and Aegadian Islands. The aegadian islands are composed of three small islands and are famous for their large marine reserve and once prosperous tuna fisheries.  The Aeolian islands are further apart from one another, are larger, and are most famous for the active volcano of Stromboli. 
Il Miglio Blue [ Il Miglio Blue ] 22-Feb-2010
Velasud Yachting is a sailing yacht company based in Palermo , Trapani and Portorosa. Choose your favorite destination and discover what it means yacht charter in sicily, amoung enchanted beauty and unexplored bays. 
Velasud Yachting [ Velasud Yachting ] 22-Feb-2010

Aeolian Islands


The Aeolian Islands lie north of Sicily and have a Mediterranean climate with hot and dry summers and cool and wet winters. 

The prevailing winds are from the west and northwest (10-15 knots) and numerous secure anchorages are available.  While less frequent the wind from the southeast arrives in strong irregular gust, is hot and enriched in Sahara desert dust and Etna ash. 

Yachts need to plan accordingly if southeasterly wind is forecast.  Thunderstorms generally follow these southerly winds and these storms arrive and pass quickly. 

The currents between the islands are greatly influenced by the winds and can be very strong in particular between Alicudi and Filicudi. 

Another observed current is south of Vulcano, which runs east or west with the predominant wind.  These volcanic islands have beautiful coastlines yet also hazardous shoals and partially submerged rocks.  It is important to navigate at a good distance from the coast.  The depth drops off rapidly and care needs to be taken when anchoring. 

There are 2 secure ports the tourist pier of Salina and Porto Pignataro of Lipari.  Vulcano and Lipari have floating wharfs that are mounted each summer with laid moorings tailed to the pier, with stern or bow-to berthing and offer water and electricity. 

Take on fuel safely at Lipari and Salina. 

The Aeolian Islands are a great destination and in the year 2000 were awarded the title of an UNESCO World Heritage Site.


Howard [ Just Imagine ] 24-May-2006

Siracusa


Siracusa was one of the most important cities in ancient Greece.

It was the home of Archimedes.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 10-Jun-2006

Catania


We sailed back from Siracusa to Catania to see Mount Etna, and drop off Marie who was flying out of Catania back to Florida.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 11-Jun-2006

Guardini Naxos(Taormina)


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Howard [ Just Imagine ] 06-Jun-2006

Egadi Islands


From the Odyssey

"Now off their harbour there lies a wooded and fertile island not quite close to the land of the Cyclopes, but still not far.

It is over-run with wild goats, that breed there in great numbers and are never disturbed by foot of man; for sportsmen--who as a rule will suffer so much hardship in forest or among mountain precipices--do not go there, nor yet again is it ever ploughed or fed down, but it lies a wilderness untilled and unsown from year to year, and has no living thing upon it but only goats. read more.....


Favignana is supposed to be the goat island mentioned in the Odyssey above. The land of the Cyclopes would be the Sicilian mainland (Trapani area).
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 02-May-2006

Cefalu


This is an amazing city and must not be missed.
Howard and Jayne [ Just Imagine ] 20-May-2006

Palermo



Agrigento (Historic)


This archelogical site is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

This was a Greek colony in the 6th century B.C., and was one of the leading cities in the Mediterranean world.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 24-Jun-2006

Trapani



Selinunte (Anchorage)


Selinunte is the ancient Greek city of Selinus which was founded by Doric Greek colonists between 650 and 630 BC. It was one of the most prominent cities in Magna Graecia, second in importance only to Syracuse.

The Carthaginians sacked the city in 409 BC and took occupation. It was destroyed by the Carthaginians in 250 BC to prevent the Romans from gaining it as a prize during the first Punic war.

A small Byzantine Greek village grew up around the ancient ruins from 700 AD. It was destroyed by earthquake in the early 9th century.

Many of the carvings from the temples depicting various scenes from Greek mythology are currently on display in Palermo's Archeological Museum.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 27-Jun-2006

Terrasini


The town is friendly and quaint with good, low key pizza and spagetti places. There is a great museum to the west of the port.

Jayne and her mother, Marie joined me here after taking the overnight ferry from Naples to Palermo.
Howard and Jayne [ Just Imagine ] 14-May-2006

San Vito lo Capo


This is a wonderful location under the spectacular mountain.

The town has nice restaurants and a good seaside village resort feel to it.

It was here that I first discovered freshly made pasta. In a small side street there is a store that sells nothing but wonderful fresh pasta, that you take home and boil for a few minutes. This kept me in instant meals for the next several days.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 10-May-2006

Capo Bianco (Anchorage)


A beautiful secluded beach where we anchored for the afternoon. We dinghied ashore and explored the cave near the point (see photo below).

Mostly nude beach.
Howard and Jayne [ Just Imagine ] 25-Jun-2006

San Leone (Marina)


This is a good place to stop and visit Agrigento.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 24-Jun-2006

Termini Imerese (Anchorage)


We did not go ashore here but it was a good secure anchorage for an overnight stop.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 17-May-2006

Brucoli (Anchorage)


A very pleasant anchorage off a charming, rustic village.

We carefully came close inshore to find a sandy patch for the anchor.

The creek to the West is quite interesting and worth a dinghy ride.

We also dinghied to the east shore to explore some ruins. Looks like a nice restaurant on the east shore too.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 09-Jun-2006

Castellamarre


This is an attractive little town between Trapani and Palermo, most noted as the birthplace of many American Mafia figures.

In the middle of May, none of the marinas were open, so I anchored overnight near the harbour entrance.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 13-May-2006

Milazzo


We stopped off here on our way back from the Aeolians. The marina in the north west corner wanted 40 for 12 meters, so we decided to try and anchor off the beach just outside a small boat mooring field.

Well it blew up into a full gale during the night, and we dragged both anchors through the weed, and in between the moored boats. We powered out of trouble dragging the anchors into deep water. Not easy pulling dead weight anchors up from 30 meters(one of them by hand).

It was 3 am by the time we had anchors securely stowed, so with nowhere to anchor we decided to take the sleigh ride of 35 knots downwind to the Strait of Messina.


We would have loved to explore the fortress on the top of the bluff but that will have to wait for next time.
Howard and Jayne [ Just Imagine ] 02-Jun-2006

Capo d'Orlando (Anchorage)


The harbour has silted up considerably with a beach now where the shoal apears on the map.

Good secure anchorage and a good kick off point for the Aeolian Islands.

We took the dinghy out of the port and down to the beach to the west.
The marina wanted 40 for 12 meters, but we were just as happy to anchor for free.
Howard and Jayne [ Just Imagine ] 24-May-2006


I have extensive knowledge for the port here as we are based here when not in the UK.

Small local port of mainly small fishing boats with pontoons run by a local boating society.
There is a refueling station for both petrol and deisel ,an outdoor shower and no toilets, chandlery or shops.
Pontoons have shore power and water.Couple of the chaps that run the port can dive .

.There are 2 small 70-80 ft  ferries here that operate tours to the eolian islands.
The port is suitable for boats up to about 55ft..Bigger can get in to refuel but it will start to be a bit of a squeeze.
There is a small crane that can lift up to about 35 ft boat max.
August is very very busy and I have been told the prices can be higher.Up to late June and fromlate september onwards there always seems to be plenty of space on the pontoons.In the winter most boats are taken out.
Visitors moorings are usually on the pontoon nearest the entrance.
Larger boats can be put stern too the concrete harbourside to the east.
Sometimes they put them on the refueling pontoon.
Bring your own ropes and anchor for mooring.
I believe you can anchor to the west side of the harbour , towards the large concrete jetty but it gets shallow near to the shore.I have seen the odd 50ft yacht here,but that is pushing it.
    The northern side of the port is silting up more in 2010 due to the 50 meter extension to the harbout wall.The sand is marked by a big green bouy with a light near the entrance.
They are starting work on a new marina along that side from october 2010 and the rest will be revamped to include restaurant, chandlery ,better facilities .Work should take 2 years,Im told.
No toilets inthe port but there is an outside shower.
Not much English spoken here unfortunately.

Nearest supermarket/ Shops are about 1/2 hour walk   west along the coast road in Capo dorlando town, 10 mins by bike.
There are a couple of nearby restaurants but little facilities near to the port.
There is a fountain about 5 minutes walk along the front that we drink from regularly.Dont be shy to fill up water containers there if needed , many locals use these fountains that can be found on your travels for cooking and drinking water.

Nearest chandlery is a 10 minute taxi ride away in Brolo.They are Volvo penta dealers and I have found them to be helpful and professional.They also carry out repairs.

The port isnt pretty,and if you need facilities, you will have to go to Porta rosa to the east or Saint agata to the west.

If the wind is coming from the north east  directly into the mouth of the harbour, It can get bumpy  on the pontoons.Better off on the harbour wall.
      Capo dorlando centre  is worth a morning.Plenty of coffee bars, Fantastic cake shops and bakeries.

It can be dead in the winter and heaving in August.
Big local festival at the end of october.
There is a small roman villa about 2 minutes walk away.
Nearby Naso is well worth the bus ride from capo dorlando station.Worth a half day to explore ,have a granita/coffee.No restaurants there though.
I buy my local wine nearby.About E1.30 per litre.they have a choice of white red and very red,all direct from huge barrels. This wine is made of grapes and nothing else added!They are just east of the port about 5 mins walk along the road.They also process the olives for oil in the autumn .I often go down and watch for a bit.

There are some lovely little ancorages nearby and the nearest of the islands are about 18 miles out.

Hopefully by 2013 the place will be transformed into something resembling a marina.

Hope this information helps.
jane and andy [ firepower ] 24-May-2006

Licata (Anchorage)


We thought Licata a convenient stopover. Fortunately we discovered that this city had much more to offer. The new breakwater, outside the old one, has created an area ideal for anchoring. Pure, white sand and good anchorage. The pilot informed that the families practised the "passeggiata", promenading their daughter, ready to be married. We experienced the "passeggiata" slightly different: In the evening all the young came down to the portal area, on their scooters, motorcycles, cars. Slowly circulating.
We went to look up the tourist office, but found it vacant. However, from a bar came a charming lady, ready to serve us. Wonderful how people, with few customers, get engaged when you start asking for information.
Being in Licata, you should take the efforts to climb up to the cemetery. As a Scandinavian we never stop to be impressed by how much people, down here, put in efforts to remember their ancestors. The wealthy families have erected real mansions, Egyptian style, with swinx and everything - two stories high.
On the way up, look out for an old lady, keen to make contact. She started to sweep the street, just to be there when we came. Unfortunately our Italian was only good for some short comment, which she appreciated.
Reprinted from home.online.no/~pernoll/, with permission of Signe and Gaute on s/y Pernoll 2004
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 23-Jun-2006

TIM Maxi Web Time Recharge GPRS (Internet)


Telecom Italia Mobile (TIM) offers an after hours service that allows practically unlimited internet access between the hours of 5 pm and 9 am on week days and all day and night on week ends and holidays.

TIM Web Time Recharge costs 25 for a month and is actually limited to 9GB which would be difficult to exceed for normal email and browsing at GPRS speeds.

To use this, you need a GSM phone capable of GPRS or UMTS with a USB connection. I used a Motorola V220 which is a triband and works in Europe and USA.

You need to be sure that the phone is not 'locked' to a particular provider. Some phones are sponsored by the phone service provider and will only work with a SIM card from that provider. My Motorola works with any SIM card in any country.

You also need to get Motorola Mobile Phone tools software which is available on CD from Amazon for USD$ 0.85 cents plus shipping $5.00. Shop around, prices vary considerably, and make sure it will be compatible with your phone.

When setting up the software, the APN should be set to "ibox.tim.it"

You simply buy a TIM prepaid SIM card which you will use for voice calls as well, and then ask them to add Maxi Web Time Recharge.

You can also get a PCMCIA card that will hold a SIM card, but then you can only use it for internet and not for regular cellphone mobile voice calls.

Be sure to disconnect from the internet before 0900 in the morning or it could eat up your prepaid minutes.

Go to www.prepaidgsm.net/en/italia/tim.html.

Vodafone has a similar service for 30 that runs 24 hours, but I think the data usage is more limited.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 04-Jul-2009

Pantelaria (Town Dock)


We spent a pleasant evening here on our way from Sicily to Tunisia and visited nice keyside restaurants. Wish we had more time to explore this island.

By very early morning a strong surge suggested a departure to Tunis.

I would like to return here another time.
Howard and Jayne [ Just Imagine ] 28-Jun-2006

Marina di Ragusa (Marina)


http://www.marinadiragusa.eu/

The port construction is further along than what is shown in the satellite image.
Howard [ Just Imagine ] 19-Apr-2010

Fosso del Gallo (Anchorage)


We came in here late and anchored right in the entrance. Since it was still early season, no one bothered us and we left early in the morning.

There was a boat anchored SW of the harbour entrance as well.
Howard and Jayne [ Just Imagine ] 15-May-2006