Walking through the old town of Lipari, you can’t help but notice the many store fronts seling day trips to the neighboring islands. I’m not sure how much thought we had given to doing one of these tours ahead of time but the more we thought about it the more we wanted to see what was around us. We chose the tour for Panarea and Stromboli. The 8 hour tour was only 60 euro for the four of us. I thought a great deal.
The tour took us from the port of Lipari, to a spot right near Panarea for swmming. I loved that the kids jumped right in off the side of the boat and swam around – with huge smiles on their faces!! From there we docked in Panarea for an hour to walk around. What a cute little town. I could imagine spending a week or so here in this quaint litte spot. A handmade granita (lemon and strawberry) made the stop perfect.
Next stop, Stromboli. We noticed clouds hovering over the island right near the top and Gabby pointed out they weren’t clouds, but smoke from the volcano. The first question that crossed our mind was “how can people live on an island with an active volcano?”
And once we landed on Stromboli, we realized many people live here. There are a couple little towns on the side of the island that doesn’t have lava spewing down it’s side. Now I have to read more about this place – how is it possible that they feel confident that the lava will flow only on the one side and never affect them?
When you first get off the boat, the port is a little run down. But the black sand/rocky beach is interesting. The area is lined with pop up souvenir shops selling things made from lava. Of course Gabby couldn’t resist the tiny dog statues made from lava dipped in glitter. She had to splurge on a few of these. But we kept walking up the hill through to another town. At the top of the hill was a beautiful little church with a wedding about to begin. We had a drink at a little spot perched above the sea while the kids snacked on delicious house made ice cream bar. Keith and I were still debating how people could live just below this crater that was spewing red fire and hot lava!
We walked back to the boat and enjoyed a dinner made by the captain of penne with olives, capers (we opted for no tuna) and tomato. Served with wine, biscotti & a sweet wine local to Lipari. Then off to see the Stromboli eruptions by night. The boat went around the side of the island so that you could take in the beauty (sounds like a poor choice of words, but it was beautiful) and something I had never laid eyes on before. As the volcano erupted you could see the red lava pouring down the side of the mountain. Very, very interesting to say the least!
A wonderful way to spend the better part of the day! (and surprisingly reasonable priced!)