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Ustica Island:

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Location: Ustica Island (Italy)
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On this page you can see an overview of the location, including interactive maps, climate data, and photos.
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Ustica is a solitary top of a great volcano, the Great Diving Capital, archaeological and fascinating. It has always been praised for its intact environment and bright sunlight of it natural beauty. Its Naturale Marine Reserve is responsable for such beauty and richness, undewater and on land as well.
Just an hour and 15' trip from the city of Palermo, you'll dive into a paradise of nature!

Ustica island is located 36 marine miles north from Palermo (Sicily), solitary and surrounded by a deep sea. Because if the colour of its volcanic rocks Ustica is also named as the 'Black Pearl of the Mediterranean', decorated by picturesque and multicoloured landscapes given by its jagged coastline rich of grottoes and bays.

The inland is characterized by hill-areas, such as the Falconiera area which allows a strepitous view, and by plains as well as a coastal area with a various presentation.

Although it might appear quite small - but not too little (8,6 kmq) - the island offers to the visitors distractions all year around and represents the ideal place for a vacation in relaxation and peacefulness.

The coastline is embellished by caves, inlets and bays which deserve to be visited in each point.
The Azur Grotto is a half-submerged cavity with crystal waters and walls decorated by sponges of various shapes and charming colours; the Pastizza Cave and the Academy Cave have a tunnel almost on the surface which brings to several dark grottoes with typical organisms; the Green Cave is carachterized by the colour of the Briozoi colonies.
The Natural Pool created by the volcanic structure and Sidoti Bay, which is the restricted area of the natural marine park, are just a few of the pleasnt bathing places.

Ustica is protected by a Natural Marine Reserve established in 1986. It is devided in 3 areas, depending on the level of protection, in order to limit or avoid fishing and navigating. The Reserve is equipped with a marine laboratory, a scientific and popularizing acquarius, an information point, a sightseeing boat and a museum.
The depths of Ustica present an underwater flora and fauna absolutely unique in the Mediterranean, and sometimes even tropical for certain point of views. Diving in Ustica or just snorkelling can be a singular and an unforgettable experience; the underwater environment is a sight of uncessable life and unexpectable colours: grassland of seaplants, walls of gorgonias, corals and sponges and lots of pelagic fishes, such as tunas, amberjacks and barracudas.
The vegetation is rich and multicoloured and together with the corals and sponges are the natural habitat of lobsters, groupers, ........ as well as the rare parrot fishes.
The wonders of its depths are not limited to flora and fauna: Ustica surprises any diver also for its archaeological richness, with anchors, amphoras and ancient objects left over through the centuries.

The island's main attraction is certainly the sea; still, the centre of the village - facing Saint Mary's Bay -is interesting and to be visited, as well as the little harbour, where several paintings of well-known authors can be admired on the colourful facades of the little houses, and the bell-tower of the Mother's Church. Not far from the centre, the Chapel of Saint Francesco is accessible through a short pathway.
Ustica is also a land of fragrancies: almonds, jasmine and vine inebriate the visitor carrying him/her in a heavenly oasis. Contact with nature is clearly shown: farmers riding donkeys invite to experiment the pleasure of a ride to visit the the Saracen Castle 'Calvario' and the Fortress on the Falconara Hill.

Accomodation solutions are more the one on the island and for every taste and budgets. Fish of good quality and shopping among the little souvenir shops of the centre for laces and needle-works will complete the holiday.

Tatjana Geloso -
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Climate Data:
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Most visitors thought
Ustica Island was:
Ranked as Good by independant reviews Ranked as Good by independant reviews Ranked as Good by independant reviews Ranked as Good by independant reviews
Non diving activities: Some things to see and do.
Language: Italian
Money: Euros
Stability: No travelling problems expected
More Information: Country Bio from Lonely Planet

Rating: Ranked as Excellant by independant reviewsRanked as Excellant by independant reviewsRanked as Excellant by independant reviewsRanked as Excellant by independant reviewsRanked as Excellant by independant reviews95%
Highest ranked My Blue Planet photo shared by Sushi.
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Atlantic Blue Fin Tuna
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