Travel notes

Ustica, the island of Circe

ummer 2020 seems far away now, but why not travel with our mind and think about possible summer destinations, where we can spend the hot weeks of July and August in the open air, in peace and tranquillity?

If, as expected, most Italians will choose a destination in Italy, here is a solution close to our Palermo that will make everyone happy: the island of Ustica.

Contrarily to what one might think, getting to Ustica is not particularly complex: the port of Palermo, from where both the hydrofoil and the ferry to the island leave, is only 1.8 km from Piazza Politeama, one of the main landmarks for anyone who reaches Palermo from the Falcone e Borsellino Airport.

Once arrived, Ustica fascinates its visitors with the genuine character of the town center and its inhabitants, not to mention the 12 km diameter full with unspoiled nature, coves, nature reserves and cobalt blue caves. Using the term “charm” when talking about Ustica is almost a must, considering that the ancients believed that this remote island in the Mediterranean sea was the home of Circe, sourceress and enchantress of Homeric origin.

What strikes right away is the possibility to plan the vacation without focusing it solely and exclusively on the sea, thanks to many other different kinds of interesting activities: the island, in fact, offers several nature trails dedicated to expert and non-expert hikers, archaeological sites that go back to the Bronze Age and watchtowers from the Bourbon era from where it is possible to enjoy breathtaking views on the intense blue sea that characterizes the island.

Speaking of sea, to enjoy at best the marine beauties of Ustica you must spend at least one day relaxing on a boat trip while navigating around the island or between the many caves that the coast offers. But also from the city center itself it is possible to easily reach parts of the coast suitable for every need, from pebble beaches perfect for children to the most impervious rocks great for diving and snorkeling (not surprisingly Ustica is considered a real paradise among those who love immersions).

This overview of Circe‘s Island can only end with a nod to the culinary delicacies of the place such as fish and vegetables, particularly tasty thanks to the soil of lavic origin. Among them, an excellence that has become a Slow-Food-must stands out: the lentil, small, dark and tasty, always present on Ustica‘s tables in summer and winter.

Given the particularly favorable climate, Ustica offers the maximum of its beauty between June and September, why not start planning a trip to discover this Black Pearl of the Mediterranean?

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