Panarea

Panarea and its history

Panarea was already inhabited in prehistoric times, as shown by the Bronze Age village dating back to the 14th century BC on the promontory of Punta Milazzese, in the south-west part of the island. The particular position of the plateau, stretching out towards the sea and protected by high cliff walls – therefore easily defensible – made it an ideal place for the settlement.
In the village, of which the remains of around twenty huts can be seen and visited, materials of Mycenaean origin were found, testifying to the role played, even in ancient times, by the Aeolian archipelago at the centre of the main Mediterranean trade routes.
Otherwise, Panarea shares the history of the other Aeolian Islands, Lipari in particular.
Inhabited since Neolithic times, in the period between the 7th and 6th centuries BC, the islands were prey to continuous raids by the Etruscans, until the Greek colonisation. In 264 BC, Lipari allied itself with the Carthaginians and the islands were subjected to continuous attacks by the Roman fleet.
In 252 BC, Lipari and its islands fell under Roman rule. This is also shown by the remains of a Roman villa, built on top of the highly inaccessible isle of Basiluzzo, owned by an eccentric Roman landowner. Evidently, the owner was a lover of the harshness and beauty of Panarea’s landscapes.
With the fall of the Roman Empire, a period of decline began that worsened with the Byzantine rule and even more so with the beginning of the Arab occupation between 827 and 1061.
With the advent of the Normans, the economic and demographic development of the islands began again. In the mid-1500s, the Muslims began to threaten the islands again; traces of this remain in the island’s names of the bay and its district of Drautto, named after the pirate Draugh.
Due to Turkish pirate raids, the island remained almost uninhabited; in fact, there were no more than one hundred inhabitants. Towards the end of the 17th century, the farmers of Lipari began to cultivate it again, but women and children were not brought there because of the danger of pirate raids. It is significant how, above the prehistoric village of Cala Junco, there is the “Castello del Salvamento”, which in Aeolian naming, the name “castello” (castle) means a rocky pinnacle of considerable height. It was used as a divine refuge for the inhabitants during these raids.
Later, with the improvement of the political situation on the islands, the population of Panarea increased to around one thousand people. But at the end of the 19th century it fell again due to emigration to the United States, South America and Australia.
Nowadays it has around 200 permanent inhabitants during the winter period, increasing during the summer season.

Volcanoes as a natural art form

Between brush strokes of sulphur and clouds of steam: the fumaroles of the port of Vulcano

The Gran Cratere of the Fossa: when the volcano becomes a sculptor

The Village of Capo Graziano

“Vulcanian” eruptions

Lipari at the centre of Mediterranean history

The senses tell The Stacks of Panarea

The senses tell The Village of Capo Graziano

The Cathedral of Lipari and the Norman Cloister of the Benedictine Monastery

Salina, the green island with twin mountains

Stromboli, the volcano that breathes

Myths and legends about volcanoes

The salt lake of Lingua

Lipari, where history intertwines with volcanoes to create archaeology

At the heart of trade in history

Pollara, between poetry and beauty

The ancient production of salt

The prehistoric village of Cala Junco

Tsunamis: a not uncommon phenomenon in Stromboli

The senses tell The Pumice Quarries of Lipari

The underwater morphological elements of the Aeolian Islands

The Aeolian Islands, where volcanology was born

Filicudi: small island, big history

The pure white of the pumice quarries

Vulcano, the youngest of the Aeolian works of art

The underwater fumarolic activity of Lisca Bianca

The hidden part of the Aeolian Islands

Where do Vulcano’s gases come from?

Panarea and its history

The senses tell The summit craters

Filicudi, a submerged paradise

The stacks of Panarea

“Strombolian” activity in the place where its definition was born

Lipari Castle, “fused” with the lava

The Thermal Baths of Saint Calogerus

Seven islands, dozens of volcanoes

Alicudi, where time has stood still

Malvasia delle Lipari DOC

The malleability of Vulcano’s mud

The polis of the living and the necropolis of the dead

How pumice is formed

The Sciara del Fuoco

Stories of the sea and shipwrecks. The wrecks of the Aeolian Islands

The senses tell The salt lake of Lingua

The summit craters

The 2002-03 eruption

The senses tell The Sciara del Fuoco

Panarea, where sea and volcanoes become sculptors