How to get to Sicily
The shortest way to Sicily is of course by airplane. The island features two national airports in Lampedusa and Pantelleria, and four international airports in Catania, Palermo, Trapani and Comiso, which have excellent on the ground transport to get you to your final destination. Please check for Catania here, for Palermo Gesap, for Trapani Airgest, for Pantelleria here, and for Comiso here - the airport of Lampedusa hasn't got an official website.
Trapani and Comiso are mostly served by low cost airlines. You could save on the flight if you choose Comiso or Trapani airport, but if you want to spend your holidays in one of the main tourist resorts, such as Cefalù, Taormina or Giardini-Naxos, you'll have to think of the transfer costs.
You could drive to Sicily. Sicily is connected by ferry services to Genoa, Naples, Salerno and Reggio Calabria on the Italian mainland, to Tunis in North Africa and to the islands of Sardinia and Malta. Sicily's main ports are: Palermo, Messina, Catania and Trapani. The most beautiful and impressing way to approach Palermo is standing on deck in the morning and seeing the "Golden Shell" appear out of the haze.
Another way to get to Sicily is a bit out of fashion: by train. There are train connections from Rome and Naples to Messina.
Another option is by bus. Sicily is connected by bus to all European countries.
If you are on a sailing trip there are several harbours where visitors are welcome and will find all facilities.
Cruise liner ports are Palermo, Messina, Trapani and Catania. In summer many cruise ships anchor in the bay of Giardini-Naxos (tender service).
During the summer season (April-October) Sicily's international airports are connected by charter flights (non stop) to all major cities in Europe. All year round there are scheduled flights connecting Sicily to the rest of the world. Scheduled (particularly long haul) flights often stop over in Rome or Milan or another major European airport, depending on the airline.
Trains are provided by the "Ferrovie dello Stato" and schedules can be checked online at www.trenitalia.com. To get onto the ferry to Messina the train is literally packed up, loaded and then unloaded. This can add quite some time to the journey. For those interested in the train trip there are direct services from all major centres on the mainland such as Milan, Florence, Rome, Naples and Reggio di Calabria. All stop in at Messina but then divert to travel to either Palermo or Catania. The Eurostar trains are more expensive but tend to arrive more punctually than Intercity (IC) or any regional lines.
Ferries to Sicily depart from Rome, Naples, Livorno and Cagliari (Sardinia) in Italy, Malta and Tunisia.
You could also go to the Aeolian Islands first, and continue your journey from there to Sicily.
Several ferry lines connect Sicily by regular schedules throughout the summer. There are far less services in winter, and you should always keep in mind that crossings can be cancelled at short notice due to bad weather conditions.
If you are considering driving to Sicily do note just how far down the island is. But this gives you the possibility to stop in some of the beautiful towns Italy, such as Florence, Rome or Naples.
Some parts of the motorways are toll free, but most of them not, and petrol in Sicily is on the pricy side. So, if you don't plan sightseeing stopovers on your way down it might be best to fly and then rent a car.
There are regular bus services between Sicily and all European countries. You could check www.ibus.it for more information. This is a comfortable way to travel but it takes some time.
When you are sailing the Med you can dock on in Sicily's north, in the west, in the south, south-east and in the north-east.
On our Services page you'll find all touristic ports including their facilities, wind protection, general conditions and so on. We also included sightseeing tips.
Marina di Ragusa is perfect - both the port and the position - for exploring the Baroque towns.
The touristic port of Trapani is sailor's dream and an excellent starting point for exploring Sicily's west.
Riposto comes recommended if you want to visit Taormina and surroundings.
Catania has several touristic ports - but you should keep mind that ash-rains could land on your nice yacht.
Skip the port of Marsala - it's the most depressing port for leisure yachts we have ever seen.