Aeolian Islands, off Sicily, Yacht Charter – 7 Day Sample Itinerary

Day 1: If you fly into Catania, you will be picked up by a crew member and brought back to the yacht, docked in Milazzo. Or perhaps you opted to take a fast ferry to Milazzo to meet your vessel there. Either way you will want to spend time in Milazzo, a town with written history dating back to 716 BC. Be sure to visit the splendid medieval castle built during the Norman era. Located on the edge of town, the castle is one of Norman Sicily’s best kept secrets and well worth a visit if you’re a lover of medieval military architecture.

Day 2: After a leisurely breakfast, it is a quick trip over to the Island of Vulcano. According to mythology, this fabulous island was the workplace of the god of fire and blacksmiths, Hephaestus. It is studded with fantastic formations, both above ground and underwater. The nooks and crannies are teaming with rainbow color fish and anemones. You will enjoy great diving and snorkeling, and, if the fishing gods are smiling, fresh fish on the grill for dinner.

Day 3: Start with a quick swim, coming back to the yacht for hot, rich coffee, fresh juice and homemade rolls. Then on to Filicudi for a quick exploration of the prehistoric village ruins on the Capo Graziano promontory. Snorkeling after lunch, then perhaps a nap as the yacht moves over to Lipari  to spend the evening.

Day 4: Start the day with a stroll around the old town on this main island of the archipelago. Lipari is the largest island and offers the widest selection of restaurants, shops, and things to do.  Be sure to visit the interesting archaeological museum (and the explanations are written in English). Or if you are not into history, how about a hike to the top of Mount Sant’Angelo for a view that will leave you breathless.  By the time you are finished, you will want a refreshing swim, ending with cocktails on the aft deck.

Day 5:  After breakfast, a visit to Stromboli, the northernmost island of the archipelago and the most spectacular for its continuously active volcano. How about a hike up the volcano for a view from the “Sciara del Fuoco”? ( To watch the eruptions is especially impressive at night so you may want to revise this itinerary to allow it. It is recommended to hike up in the late afternoon and returning in the evening (do not forget to take a torch) or the following morning. Allow three hours for the climb up and two hours for the descent; it is not particularly taxing but it should not be undertaken by the faint-hearted, especially in rare case of bad weather) . Stromboli is also a great place for experienced divers but not recommended for beginners. Then it’s back on the yacht to head over to Salina (also known as the “Garden Island”) for the evening.

Day 6:  A shore excursion should be on the schedule to buy some of the local capers packed in salt: until you’ve tried them this way, you’ll never really know what a true caper tastes like. (If you don’t like capers, you may discover it’s really the vinegar they’re usually packed in you don’t like, not the capers). Or purchase some of the famous Malvasia delle Lipari wine. After your shopping expedition some snorkeling or diving is in order (“before” sampling the wine of course)! Or, as Salina has the highest mountain in the islands at 950m (3,130 ft) and numerous hiking trails, you may prefer a vigorous hike.  When everyone is back on board, head over to Panerea (the “jet-set” island) for an evening in town, keeping an eye out for the rich and famous that party there. Panerea is tiny, compared to the other islands, but is the most picturesque with it’s stark white houses and brilliant yellow ginestra bushes.

Day 7: Time to return to Miazzo, but no need to hurry.  Plenty of time for one last snorkel or dive off the coast of Salina, Lipari or Vulcano as you head back. 

(Thanks to Distinctive Charter Yachts for the basic information for this itinerary)