May 8: Salina loop

Salina is the second largest of the Aeolian Islands and like its sisters is included on the World Heritage List especially because of its worth for vulcanology. The vast green landscape is covered with ferns, poplars, chestnut trees as well as caper bushes, prickly pear cactus and a variety of orchards, olive groves and vineyards. And there is Malvasia -- a famous white wine that is only produced on Salina. Malvasia is a golden colored wine with an delicately sweet taste. Usually served as an after dinner drink it is accompanied with a sesame cookie to dip in the sweet nectar.

First it is a hydrofoil ride from Lipari to Santa Marina, Salina and then a small break for a late morning granita in the town of Lingua! One of the requirements of a "Taste of Sicily" tour is that one needs to taste the finest granitas whenever they are offered! Time of day has nothing to do with it. Sugar charged and the group is off on today's ride of a loop around the island with a "slight" detour up the mountainside at Malfa to a lookout spot well worth the climb. The climb brings the group to the top of the world and beauty no matter what direction one chooses to look.

Back down the mountain and out on the way with each bend in the road offering another more spectacular view. Once again Mother Nature has out done herself with the vibrant blue of the sea nudging the pastoral green of the slopes. The road climbs and falls as it winds its way around the island through the town of Leni on its way to Rinella. And then -- just when the sun is hitting its highest point a stop high in the mountains at Bed and Breakfast AL Belvedere is on the agenda. It is lunch time and of course, one has to indulge to keep the energy up for all those hills!

Francesca and her family out do themselves with a multi-course lunch that is served in one of the most beautiful settings on the island. Each course is as colorful as the view -- each mouthful melts into a burst of flavors -- each course produces in another phenomenal dish. Capers, olives, all are grown locally and swim in the olive oil. Once again the Sicilian cooking is unique and wonderful.

From this vantage point it is all downhill to Rinella and the Porto! With very full stomachs the group lets gravity take control and coasts to the ship for the return trip to Lipari. This time it is a ferry with plenty of time to relax on board and continue to absorb the landscape.


Leaving Lipari

Lipari Afar


Pumice Crater

The Islands

Vulcano Island

First A Granita Stop


Monica: ""Granita In The Morning! What Better Way To Go!!"



Ann Enjoying the View


We Were Way Down There!


Monica Having Fun



Pam Glad That She Is At The Top!!


Pam and Kathy Enjoying the Level Land


The Road Down


Kathy On Top

Judy At Francesca's

Monica Enjoying the View While Waiting For Lunch

Pam: "What Now?"

Dario -- A Leader's Job Is Never Done

The Group Checking Out the View Back



Ann: "Wake Me In Time For Lunch"

Francesca and Her Crew


The Crater From Sea

Our Boat!