Sicily's green tourist marinas: Blue Flag sustainability
Capo d'Orlando Marina, a stone's throw from the Aeolian Islands
Among the promoters of Mediterranean preservation, the port of Capo d'Orlando is also confirmed for the second year running. The green stance of its yachtspeople ensured that the port was awarded the Blue Flag for 2022 as well. This is a prestigious acknowledgement issued by the Danish organisation FEE - Foundation for Environmental Education, which rewards good conduct in terms of respect for the environment and bathing water.
To see this marvellous Sicilian mooring with your own eyes, you simply have to go to Contrada Bagnoli, in San Gregorio, an ancient fishing village located just east of Capo D'orlando, a town in the province of Messina. You will find a marina with first-class services, ready to offer assistance, hospitality and comfort.
Among its strongpoints is the shipyard, a modern, multifunctional complex which is aesthetically pleasing. There are over 180 thousand square metres of indoor spaces and docks, and infrastructures inspired by bio-architecture. This is complemented by 553 berths, technical shops and a refuelling station.
It is very pleasant to stroll along the quayside and browse in the shopping arcade, which covers an area of 3 thousand square metres, including shops, bars, restaurants and mini markets.
The enchanting scenery of the Aeolian Islands will open up in front of you, and you can reach them in just a few minutes: the port is, in fact, a charter base for departures and arrivals to the islands, and you can book your boat holiday with one of the many local companies.
You can also attend artistic, musical and cultural events, sailing sporting events, and indulge in a romantic dinner in one of the many restaurants, under a starry sky.
Finally, in the harbour area you may choose to enjoy the footpaths of the Cava Mercadante, an archaeological site of exceptional interest, characterised by ancient rocks rising from the sea.
Marina del Nettuno: sea, food and relaxation
A 2022 new entry on the Blue Flag list, the Marina del Nettuno is the second green example on the Messina coast.
The facility, which opened in 1998, can accommodate up to 160 boats. The moorings are made with floating aluminium pontoons, complete with water and light, while docking is facilitated by dock fingers.
Located in the outer part of the port of Messina, in Viale della Libertà batteria Masotto, the Marina del Nettuno is protected by a floating reinforced concrete seawall, a breakwater pier and a smaller breakwater, barriers that mitigate the intense Strait winds.
Landing in this sustainable area, you can expect to find a range of state-of-the-art services and equipment as well as 24-hour mooring assistance provided by qualified personnel.
Overlooking the harbour is the Marina del Nettuno Yachting Club, where you can take some time to relax: in an already evocative setting, you can spend a wonderful evening by the sea, without having to venture into the city centre. You will be welcomed into an elegant and refined setting, where you can enjoy excellent aperitifs and dishes inspired by the flavours of Sicily.
In the sophisticated and understatedly chic lounge bar, try the best spirits from the wide selection of cocktails, prepared with the utmost care and creativity, from the traditional to the most inventive. The restaurant will delight you with its flawless cuisine, blending imagination and innovation, and whose raw materials and ingredients are chosen according to the seasons.
Every detail is carefully planned to make your stay as pleasant as possible.
Moreover, given its central location, you can take advantage of the yachting club to visit the artistic and natural wonders of Messina.
Sicily's 'smart' ports: on the way to a zero-emission future
While it is true that there are only two Sicilian tourist ports that contribute to the well-being of our sea, it may reassure you to know that there are good prospects for the future.
In particular, the ports of western Sicily have made a breakthrough on the issue of ecological transition with the 'Smart Port' model, involving the implementation of energy efficiency measures in the port facilities of Palermo, Termini Imerese, Trapani and Porto Empedocle.
The digitalisation of port logistics systems and the application of renewable energy sources mean that within twenty years, the goal of zero emissions will be reached. And it will be possible to dock in increasingly sustainable and environmentally-friendly ports.