By: Elizabeth Flynn

​While mainland Italy is a diverse landscape with many beautiful places to visit, there are also many stunning islands along the coast of Italy. One group is the Aeolian Islands and this consists of seven separate islands; Alicudi, Filicudi, Lipari, Panarea, Salina, Stromboli, and Vulcano. In addition to the main islands, there is also Basiluzzo which is a large rock rather than an island. The islands are located in the Tyrrhenian Sea approximately 60 kilometers west of Calabria and 25 kilometers north of Sicily. These islands are listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Sites. 

 

​Alicudi and Filicudi

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​These are two of the smaller islands and far less developed than the other islands in this archipelago. For these reasons, these are the least visited of the islands in the archipelago. 

 

​Lipari

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​This is the largest and main island of the archipelago. Lipari measures ten kilometers in length and five kilometers in width. The area of the island measures 37 kilometers square. The main town on this island is also called Lipari and this is where visitors will arrive at and leave the island by ferry. Features of the island which visitors can enjoy include an archaeological museum and a Norman church. 

 

​Panarea

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​Although this is the smallest of the islands, it is widely considered the most fashionable of the Aeolian Island to visit and attracts wealthy tourists. One of the main reasons people choose to visit this island is the spectacular views of Stromboli. The port is the central point of the island’s activity.

 

​Salina

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​In comparison to the other islands in this archipelago, Salina is much greener and is predominantly covered in hills and forests. Of all the Aeolian Islands, this is the only one that is suitable for agriculture. Salina is popular with tourists who enjoy walking and hiking. At 27 kilometers square, it is the largest of the islands.

 

​Stromboli

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​This is the most remote of the islands. It is most famous for the Stromboli volcano as this has been erupting almost continuously since 1932 and this makes it one of the most active volcanoes on earth. These eruptions are visible from miles away and it is for this reason that the island has earned the nickname of the ‘Lighthouse of Mediterranean’. People take boat trips around the island at night to view the spectacular activity of the volcano first-hand. 

 

​Vulcano

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​The main feature of this island is the Gran Cratere volcano. Even from a distance, it is possible to see the smoke and clouds of sulfurous gas coming from the volcano cone. Vulcano is also known for its hot water springs and mud baths.

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