Egadi Islands two steps from San Vito lo Capo
Brief history. Egadi Islands, from the port of Trapani (45 Km from San Vito Lo Capo apartments).
There are traces of human presence in the islands already in the upper paleolithic, when the territory was probably connected to the mainland. After the Punics, the Romans became the dominating archipelago, following the historic battle of the Egadi of 241 BC. The Arabs gave evidence of their passage especially in Favignana, as far as the layout of the island is concerned; While the Normans are attributed to the construction of several castles (used as prisoners by the Bourbons). At the end of the 17th century, The islands became the property of the Marquis Pallavicini of Genoa, which initiated the development of agriculture and the fishing of tuna. This process was enhanced by Florio's entrepreneurs, who in 1874 bought the archipelago for more than two million lire, building valuable architectures in Favignana.
Favignana Is the largest island that once had its economy based on tuff groves and tuna-related products, whose "mattanza" today is occasionally conducted. Favignana, the butterfly island, with its varied landscape, alternates rocky stretches to sandy shores (among the beaches we remember that of Lido Burrone). Inside the island, stone columns with their imposing elevation rise as skyscrapers, and on the coast, to Cala Rossa and to the Bue Marino (so called because once inhabited by the nun seal); Large tuffs, engraved in thousand blocks, come to leaf the sea turquoise and offer beautiful chromatic contrasts. The top of Mount S. Caterina is then a privileged spot from which to admire the entire archipelago. By road, partially asphalted and in part no, you can reach the Lido Burrone, Cala Rossa, Cala Azzurra, Cala Rotonda, Calamoni, Cave Romantic and Private Cave, Cala Stornello protected by the small island of Preveto (who flys by plane , can see the amazing rabbit shape), Galera and Galeotta, and other small unpaved little beaches, accessible only by boat. Nature, even if transformed by man, shakes off all its natural beauty. Extensive extensions are covered with hips, fichidindia, zabbare which with high stems give the landscape a special charm, capers, aromatic plants: sage, rosemary, oregano, thyme etc.
The ancient Phorbantia (named after a particular spice in the place), a silent island with unmistakable scents, with strong and warm colors of the Sicilian sun, stretches for a surface of 6 km2, alternating in the unspoiled stain Mediterranean about 400 species of rock flora. The presence of a dense and intrigued mediterranean scrub caused the forest to carry out repeated forestation operations, which was realized today by the creation of an equipped area located a few steps from the beach of Cala Minnola, shaded by Mediterranean pines, Aleppo, and maritime pines, whose very thick roof creates a cool environment, most ambitious to those who after the bath or after sunbathing want to eat a meal or indulge in a relaxing rest. The smallest of the Egadi Islands, easily reachable from our San Vito Lo Capo apartments, is the ideal place not only for those who love the sea, but also for those who want to trekking, thanks to the numerous walking paths and hills that Culminating in the Monaco Lace (278 m), which is thrown into the sea, forming rugged rocky coasts, particularly beautiful in the southwestern part. Crossed by a single road that runs from south to north, it is an island for those who love nature and absolute calm. The village consists of a small group of houses around the marina, which is about 15 km from Trapani. You can not miss a visit to the Grotta del Genovese, reachable by land or boat, which preserves prehistoric graffiti. The island's boat ride allows you to reach the numerous coves and to bathe in a sea of intense blue.
Is the farthest and wildest island; Its waters are full of caves and foothills, and for this reason, for the enthusiasts, they represent the paradise for diving. Marettimo offers visitors to the island a natural paradise, characterized by dense Mediterranean vegetation, numerous paleoendemisms and a succession of peaks and cliffs that fall to the sea, from marble caves: Camel Cave, Tuono , Pipa, Bombarda and Bombardella, whose name was given for the boats produced by the wave motion, the Perciata (rich in stalactites), the cave of the Nativity, which with its calcareous deposits has created figures representing nativity. The small urban agglomeration of Marettimo, preserves testimonies of the Roman presence and a 17th century castle, erected on the remains of a Saracen sight tower. The small town is a succession of fishing houses enclosed between the old and the new Scalo.
Archaeological resources of Levanzo
The Grotta del Genovese shows a fine example of prehistoric art; There is not much light, but when used to the dimness of the natural ant, you can see graffiti of the Paleolithic age, representing animals (including a deer for its effective performance) and three human figures (probably in one Magic-ritual dance), rock paintings in black (Neolithic) with figures of men, idols and animals. Although there is no evidence in favor, in the Egadi Islands one could identify the Island of Goats, Homer speaks of Odyssey. In Favignana, near Cala San Nicola, the remains of a Phoenician necropolis that probably date back to the 8th century BC have been found; While at the Grotta del Pozzo and the Cave of Ficara (on the Mount of St. Catherine), several Punic inscriptions were found. In Marettimo, among the trails that cross the mountain, you encounter a Roman fortification in "opus reticulatum" (presumably of the I-III century AD). And next to the medieval Basilica church.
Monumental resources. Just a few miles from San Vito Lo Capo
In Favignana there are two fortresses that can be traced back to the Norman period: the fort of Santa Caterina, on the homonymous hill, and the strong Saint Giacomo (now inaccessible as a prison). In the main square of the village dominates the church Matrix, built in the 18th century. Other testimonies are to the Florio family: the tuna factory, the tombstone called Camparia, the neo-neo-style Neapolitan Florian palace outside, liberty inside, the church of Sant'Antonio, all by Damiani Almeyda. The establishment and the Camparia have a majestic look with their sharp arches and the times that give them the sense of the sacredness of the work. In Marettimo, the Spanish Castle of Punta Troia, from its strategic position dominates the country; Since the 18th century, the building was used as a political prison (where patriot Guglielmo Pepe was imprisoned), so its origins date back to the 17th century.
The Egadi, The Egadi, and especially Favignana, are often associated to the Mattanza (from the Spanish matar, killing) or tuna fishing, a spectacular activity in which faith, myth and rituality blend together. The Mattanza dates back to the Arab period and is accomplished in late spring, when the tuna, at full reproduction time, is let out of the current and can be found more easily. The show today is open to the public. In the archipelago of the Egadi fish is the master the gastronomic traditions and in particular the tuna, which is cooked in various ways: do not miss the meatballs (cooked with sauce or marinades)! All parts of the Tuna are used: male semen is called Lattume and cooked mostly as fried; But the Bottarga comes from female eggs (it is served as sliced appetizer with oil, or grated on the pasta). Ficazza is a kind of tuna salami made with the animal's back and sides, seasoned and preserved. In addition to tuna, everywhere you can taste fresh fish, flavored with aromatic plants collected in the surrounding plateaus (mint, thyme, rosemary). A specialty is then the pasta with sea urchin with intense sea flavor (spaghetti in white seasoned with curly eggs).
Shows and events (near San Vito Lo Capo)
In recent years, the Egadi Islands are seen as an ideal scenario for sailing events and sailing regattas. In April, in Favignana, the "Cassatella" Festival, typical sweet Trapanese, is made annually, consisting of a fried pasta filled with sugared ricotta and flavored.
Sport and free time
As in San Vito Lo Capo, most of the activities that can be carried out in the archipelago are connected to the sea. Several diving centers organize group scuba diving; Moreover, it is also possible to take part in organized boat tours that make the island tour, allowing you to reach the most unexplored ants and enter the caves. In Marettimo, the hiking trails on the mountain and offering superb views can be crossed by donkeys with the help of a guide.
The most beautiful places you can visit during your stay in our San Vito Lo Capo apartments.