Stromboli island volcano

stromboliIt is simultaneously an island and a volcano, but also an important and charming touristic destination. I am discussing about Stromboli, a small island of the Aeolian archipelago, in the middle of the Tyrrhenian and the Mediterranean sea. That is also an active volcano, rather, one among the most active on the Earth. The main features of Stromboli are its very explosive eruptions. They occur hourly.  The most of times, they are harmless, but they emit ash, dust , assorted gases and burning lava. The latter shapes a long flaming stream which flows into the sea and it is called Sciara di Fuoco ( see the image below). Due to the bright sparks emitted during its eruptions, the volcano was also called “the Lighthouse of the Mediterranean”.

History

stromboli-sciara-di-fuocoStromboli has very ancient origins and it was also known by the Greeks and The Romans. Indeed, its name comes from the Greek word Strongulē, that means round due to its circular shape. Its crater has erupted constantly during the past 2000 years. It is included in the Calabrian volcanic arc. The most violent eruptions date back to 1907 and 1932. Other eruptions have been recorded in 2002 and 2007. For their typical volcanic activity, the eruptions are called “strombolian ”.

Touristic information

stromboli-island-volcanoStromboli is regarded as a quiet and secluded place suitable for those who search for a relaxing vacation. In the island that surrounds the volcano, there are only three villages that remained uninhabited for years. They are in San Bartolo, San Vincenzo and Ginostra, that is the smallest among the three. These villages are hamlets included in the municipality of Lipari and, usually, tourists take a tour to Stromboli after visiting Lipari. Ginostra is the most secluded and you can only reach it by sea. In these villages, there are only a few accommodations, but the locals who expatriated in the 1950s left a few buildings for tourist rental. There are no lights on the streets and to walk around them, it is better to bring a torch before going to this island. It is also hard to find cars in these wild and fascinating villages. Above all, in Ginostra, locals offer donkeys to be used for a tour in the same village. At 1.6 km from North of Stromboli, it is Strombolicchio, a little islet where,  in 1926, it was installed a lighthouse to enlighten boats. You can reach this lighthouse by climbing on a stair of 200 steps.

Beaches
Due to its intensive volcanic activity, the beaches are not the main touristic attraction in Stromboli. However, this island contain a couple of beautiful and fascinating beaches, such as the one of Scari, with lava pebbles, and the one of Ficogrande, with its thin black sand. For this feature, this beach is also called “the black pearl of the Mediterranean sea”.

How to visit the volcano
Even though the current eruptions are not dangerous in Stromboli, volcanic activity is always monitored by the local Institute of Seismology. In case of strong eruptions, indeed, the faults under the sea could move and cause a tsunami. Tourists are forbidden to visit the volcano with no guide. Before climbing up to the crater, they must wear ovealls and helmet in order to prevent them from being filled with black ash. However, the vision of eruptions is enough evocative at night. The excursion to the top of the volcano takes three hours of walk and it is better you are a good walker before undertaking this tiring tour.

How to reach Stromboli
As all the Aeolian islands, you can reach Stromboli only by boat and ferry. Usually, you must land in Catania or Palermo airport and then take a bus to Milazzo. In this city, there are ferries you can use to go to the Aeolian islands and up to Stromboli.

Curiosity
Stromboli is also the place where Jules Verne set his famous novel titled Voyage au centre de la Terre (Travel to the Earth’s centre) and where, in 1949, the Italian movie director Roberto Rossellini filmed the movie titled: Stromboli, Terra DI Dio (Stromboli the land of God) with Ingrid Bergman. Still today, just in Stromboli, tourists can also visit the home where Rossellini and Ingrid Bergman lived their notorious and prohibited love story. The home where some scenes was filmed is like many other ancient Sicilian homes, with no electricity or toilet and with the allure of a wild land like Stromboli. Also the famous Italian stylists Dolce and Gabbana have a home in Stromboli.

To find accommodations in Stromboli where the owners speak English, please send me a message.

I’ll find the proper accommodation for you!

 

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