Lampedusa, Sicily

© ziafedora (Eva) –

In past centuries Lampedusa was an important port in the middle of the Mare Nostrum, a meeting place between Greeks, Phoenicians, Romans and Africans. Blessed in the past by maritime commerce and a sea full of fish, it is today a narrow strip of land surrounded by one of the most beautiful and evocative seas of the whole Mediterranean.

Twenty four square kilometres of bleak and apparently inhospitable land halfway between Malta and Tunisia, in the past Lampedusa was a bridge between Africa and Europe and, to some extent, it still is. Its beauty is almost moon like with its ocre yellow coast and warm colours and its dry, now fully African climate. Coves, little bays and cliffs: this is what those who love the island are looking for.

Another unique feature of Lampedusa’s identity is the great caretta caretta tortoises which lay their eggs every year on the beach and attract a number of volunteers to the island every summer to protect the young as they make their way to the sea.

Lampedusa: what to see

Lampedusa town has no monuments or attractions to visit and is mainly modern hotels. The island’s night life for young people is definitely improving from its total absence just a few years ago. Tourism is concentrated along the coasts and around attractions such as the many caves – Taccio Vecchio for example, a splendid underwater bay.
Lampedusa’s beaches

The heart of Lampedusa is its beautiful beaches. The island’s limestone rocks make them pale and sandy with a gently sloping sea bed and beautifully contrasting colours. Where the sea meets the coast it turns spectacularly turquoise or a very light blue.

One of its most beautiful beaches is undoubtedly Guitgia with its pure white sands and crystal clear seas but it is also the nearest to the town and thus gets crowded. Cala Pulcino, on the island’s western tip and best reached by sea, is a little, peaceful sandy bay. The little known, secluded Cala Galera with its extremely unusual grey sands is a breeding ground for octopus and other fish.