Aeolian Islands Holidays
The Aeolian Islands are what is known as a volcanic archipelago. They have been created over millions of years from both active and passive volcanoes. As this island chain is found within the warm waters associated with the Tyrrhenian Sea, they are very popular as tourist destinations. They offer amenable weather and it is said that more than 200,000 visitors will enjoy their tranquil shores on an annual basis. Another convenient fact is that these islands are close to both Greece and Italy; ideal if you are not looking to travel for thousands of miles in order to enjoy the sun. Let’s take a look at the main attractions as well as when might be the best times to visit.
The Aeolian Islands: A UNESCO World Heritage Site and More
The first thing to mention is that you are likely to notice the cone shape of these islands when you arrive. This is particularly the case in regards to the islands of Alicudi, Salina and Stromboli. In fact, Stromboli is still considered to be a relatively active volcano. It is nonetheless possible to ascend many of these peaks; especially the summit associated with the largest island of Lipari. It is recommended that you take advantage of guided tours, as some of the slopes are quite steep and even dangerous at times.
The traditional houses here represent part of the allure of the total island chain. Up until recent times, residents were rather restricted from access the Italian mainland. They were therefore obliged to make use of the materials at hand. These generally consisted of ash, pumice stones and lave rocks. Still, they were able to transform their homes into architectural masterpieces. The addition of many vineyards thanks to organically rich soil further accentuates the villages to be encountered. It is best to speak with a local tour guide to determine which ones are accessible.
The main island of Lipari is arguably the most famous location, as it is associated with the bulk of luxury resorts and its beaches stretch on for miles. Some of thee beaches offer black sand due to the presence of (now dormant) volcanoes. This island is also very historic, as it has been inhabited since the Late Bronze Age. There are many preserved ruins; particularly associated with both the Greeks, the Romans and later, the Ottoman Empire. If you would like to learn more, you can always visit the Aeolian Archaeological Museum found within the city centre. Other noteworthy sites include a large pumice slope that stops only a single metre from the sea and the annual feast of St. Bartholomew. These will offer you a rich immersion into local foods and culture.
When to Visit
As you would expect, the summers here can become quite warm. The months of July and August are known to have temperatures as high as 40ºC in the sun. Visiting between the late autumn and the late spring will offer you the most agreeable climate and the days of rain here are very few. In addition, ticket prices (airlines and accommodations) are also slightly cheaper; ideal if you are trying to keep an eye on your budget.