Portopalo di Capo Passero

Portopalo di Capo Passero, Sicily

© Giovanni Caruso – panoramio.com

Capo Passero, on Sicily’s southernmost tip, is one of the outposts of Europe on the border with the Mediterranean and Africa. Time has stood still in Portopalo, a village which still lives from fishing and agriculture.

Below Tunisia and stretching out into the sea Portopalo is a far off place both geographically and in terms of atmosphere and it is the ideal location to get back to Sicily as it was, the real Sicily.

On both the Ionian and the Mediterranean seas, Capo Passero is an arid headland in the deep blue sea of one of the most beautiful coastlines in Europe and a popular destination for divers with its rich sea bed pullulating with life from Posidonia bushes to false coral.

It is also a gourmet wine and food paradise with a tuna and general fishing past which stretches back for millennia. It would be sacrilege to leave without tasting its bottarga (roe) and other seafood specialities.

And a short distance from the coast there are two little islands: Isola delle Correnti, towered over by its lighthouse and Capo Passero island, both of which are protected marine reserves.


The vistas from the still largely undiscovered remote coastline are varied and spectacular with sandy beaches alternating with spectacular white cliffs carved out by the winds and tides into natural caves and rock stacks.

The most famous is Grotta del Polipo, a wonder of the natural world and a paradise for divers and the simply curious. If you don’t want to miss anything, the island of Capo Passero is perfect with its splendid cliffs to the south and white beaches in the direction of the mainland.