Levanzo

The pocket island

Levanzo is one of those islands that are whispered about like secrets.
The few images that we see of it seem so perfect that we could believe in a decor
of cardboard. The kind of destination where one think it looks too perfect to be true.
Levanzo is nevertheless very real. This 5km² pocket island, the smallest of the Aegadian archipelago off Sicily, is a small white and blue jewel, set in the rock and overlooking
a bay with crystal clear waters.

Levanzo is one of those islands that are whispered about like secrets.
The few images that we see of it seem so perfect that one could believe in a decor of cardboard. The kind of destination where one think it looks too perfect to be true. Levanzo is nevertheless very real.
This 5km² pocket island, the smallest of the Aegadian archipelago off the coast of Sicily, is a small white and blue jewel, set in the rock and overlooking a bay with crystal clear waters.

As you get off the boat in Levanzo, you will come face to face, with a languid cat in the sun and a few old people chatting on a bench. The only village on the island consists of around thirty white houses clinging to the hill and a port with tropical waters.
Silence here is such that you want to whisper while walking around so as not to disturb the tranquility of its 80 inhabitants. The island breathes serenity and seems to belong to another world where life flows (very) slowly.

As you get off the boat in Levanzo, you will come face to face, with a languid cat in the sun and a few old people chatting on a bench. The only village on the island consists of around thirty white houses clinging to the hill and a port with tropical waters.
Silence here is such that you want to whisper while walking around so as not to disturb the tranquility of its 80 inhabitants. The island breathes serenity and seems to belong to another world where life flows (very) slowly.

Levanzo is ideal for dolce farniente (the sweetness of doing nothing) lovers.
Perfect for those who love slow-life vacations, who want to disconnect with peace
and quiet in an idyllic setting. Tourists rarely stop there, or only for the day.
One supposedly quickly made the rounds as “there is not much”.
However, it is precisely this supposed nothing that the island invites to explore.

Levanzo is ideal for dolce farniente (the sweetness of doing nothing) lovers.
Perfect for those who love slow-life vacations, who want to disconnect with peace and quiet in an idyllic setting. Tourists rarely stop there, or only for the day.
One supposedly quickly made the rounds as “there is not much”.
However, it is precisely this supposed nothing that the island invites to explore.

GROTTA DEL GENOVESE

The island, forbidden to vehicles, is covered with hills and bordered by steep rocky coasts where many prehistoric caves are hidden, in particular the Grotta del Genovese. Unique in Italy, rivaling Altamira and Lascaux, this cave brings together Upper Paleolithic incisions and Upper Neolithic paintings. Magic to think that we are faced with a testimony left there more than 12,000 years ago. The grace of certain animal figures is so admirable we can say the search for beauty that animated our ancestors brings us together way beyond the millennia. The cave, which can be visited from March to November, is accessible either by sea or by a small path on the mountainside (with good shoes).

The island, forbidden to vehicles, is covered with hills and bordered by steep rocky coasts where many prehistoric caves are hidden, in particular the Grotta del Genovese. Unique in Italy, rivaling Altamira and Lascaux, this cave brings together Upper Paleolithic incisions and Upper Neolithic paintings. Magic to think that we are faced with a testimony left there more than 12,000 years ago. The grace of certain animal figures is so admirable we can say the search for beauty that animated our ancestors brings us together way beyond the millennia. The cave, which can be visited from March to November, is accessible either by sea or by a small path on the mountainside (with good shoes).

Thanks to its small size, you can easily get to the different beaches on the island along beautiful coastal paths. Depending on the season, you can swim in the coves that dot the coast, or walk among the agaves and pines towards the lighthouse or Mount Pellegrino.

A 20-minute walk from the port, cala Minnola is a superb cove, surrounded by a pine forest. Divine for swimming, a siesta or a picnic in the shade as well as for diving in the maritime reserve with, in the distance, the wrecks of old Roman galleons.

Thanks to its small size, you can easily get to the different beaches on the island along beautiful coastal paths. Depending on the season, you can swim in the coves that dot the coast, or walk among the agaves and pines towards the lighthouse or Mount Pellegrino.

A 20-minute walk from the port, cala Minnola is a superb cove, surrounded by a pine forest. Divine for swimming, a siesta or a picnic in the shade as well as for diving in the maritime reserve with, in the distance, the wrecks of old Roman galleons.

2000 YEARS UNDER THE SEA

2000 YEARS UNDER THE SEA

In Levanzo, history has left traces also under the sea. Cala Minnola is the place where the Battle of the Aegadian took place in the year 241 BC.
The Romans then prevailed over the Carthaginians, ending the First Punic War. Today, the rostra of the ships as well as the helmets and swords of the crew are in the Archaeological Museum of Favignana.
On the other hand, it is in Levanzo that you can visit a unique underwater archaeological site. 40 meters from the coast, giant amphoras were found in the same place. They were used to transport salted fish and especially “garum” (fish paste very popular in Roman times) now coming from the neighboring establishment.

In Levanzo, history has left traces also under the sea. Cala Minnola is the place where the Battle of the Egadi took place in the year 241 BC.
The Romans then prevailed over the Carthaginians, ending the First Punic War. Today, the rostra of the ships as well as the helmets and swords of the crew are in the Archaeological Museum of Favignana.
On the other hand, it is in Levanzo that you can visit a unique underwater archaeological site. 40 meters from the coast, giant amphoras were found in the same place. They were used to transport salted fish and especially “garum” (fish paste very popular in Roman times) now coming from the neighboring establishment.

In contrast, on the west coast, cala Faraglione offers a totally different spectacle.
Very mineral, this creek is a clever mix of strength and softness, especially at sunset.
The path leading to it is delightful with a hypnotic view of the neighboring island of Favignana .

At the end of the day, the entire village meets with family in the village, strolls on the seafront, then has an aperitivo at the café which overlooks the port. It is the ideal place to sympathize with the inhabitants and the families of Palermo in second home, while observing the departure of the few tourists who came for the day. A Spritz in hand and with the intense privilege feeling that comes out from this haven of peace. The soft colors and the poetry of the sunset will do the rest.

At the end of the day, the entire village meets with family in the village, strolls on the seafront, then has an aperitivo at the café which overlooks the port. It is the ideal place to sympathize with the inhabitants and the families of Palermo in second home, while observing the departure of the few tourists who came for the day. A Spritz in hand and with the intense privilege feeling that comes out from this haven of peace. The soft colors and the poetry of the sunset will do the rest.

In Levanzo, there is no need to do many activities.
The island is a delight in itself and little by little, life in the village takes precedence over its own habits: the meeting with Paolo’s fresh fish, the walks in search of wild asparagus, the evening aperitif at Mr Campo’s bakery, swimming at night, music at the port.
And now we are quickly caught up in the game and two days are no longer enough…

Levanzo is

3 km long by 2 km wide

Accessibility
Accommodation capacity
Animation
Levanzo island map - Egadi islands - Sicily - Italie - Europe

Where is Levanzo located? Levanzo is the smallest of the 3 islands forming with Favignana and Marettimo, the Aegadian archipelago, in the North-West of Sicily. Much less known than its Aeolian neighbour, this archipelago is mostly frequented by “mainland” Sicilians.

How to get to Levanzo? 1 hour drive from Palermo then 20 minutes by hydrofoil from Trapani. To be reserved in advance.

How to travel on the island ? Vehicles are not allowed on the island (there is no road on Levanzo anyway). Therefore move on foot, by bike, or by boat.

Where to sleep and eat? In Levanzo, there are two bars/restaurants, a bakery/extra grocery store, and a souvenir shop. That’s it! The island has 3 small hotels and some seasonal rentals. Best spotted addresses (but not tested!): Dolcevita Egadi Resort L’Isola Residence

The book to take in your suitcase? The art of the siesta by Thierry Paquot.

The song to include in your playlist? Isola che non c’è by Edoardo Bennato.

And most importantly, where to drink Spritz? You will understand, no difficult dilemma here: after having tested the 2, our recommendation is the delicious Romano bar on the left facing the port. But try both anyway :-)

If I had known, …

I would have booked my accommodation well in advance, places being limited and very popular.
In February it’s already spring on Levanzo :)

I would have booked the visit to the cave on their website unless I only wanted to see it through the entrance gate.

I would have taken a few more days to visit the neighboring islands of Favignana and Marettimo.

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