Dominated by a historic castle-citadel, Lipari is an atmospheric island town in the Aeolian archipelago. It serves as the main transportation hub for the volcanic islands and is home to a picturesque harbour. Lipari is renowned for its archaeological museum, which covers Aeolian history from prehistoric to classical times.
Things to do in Lipari
Watching over the town is the Castello di Lipari, which was built in the 16th century under the reign of Charles V. Wander through the Neo Gothic-style gallery and admire the Baroque-style facade of the Church of the Addolorata. Excavations revealing Bronze Age huts are visible nearby, together with sarcophagi dating back to the Ancient Greeks. South-west of the castle complex is a modern theatre offering magnificent views across the bay.
Archaeological findings from across the region are exhibited at the Luigi Bernabo Brea Museum, with everything from ancient theatrical masks to amphorae salvaged from shipwrecks on display. It tells the story of Lipari as an important cultural, economical and spiritual centre throughout the centuries. Occupying the former castle prisons is a contemporary art collection featuring the works of Matteo Basile and Fati Hassan.
Adjacent to the castle is the Baroque-style Basilica Concattedrale di San Bartolomeo, which features a beautifully decorated, vaulted nave. Gaze up at the frescoes depicting biblical scenes and pay your respects at the silver statue of San Bartolomeo. In the 12th-century Norman cloister, take note of the column capitals carved with animal figures.
Getting around Lipari
Regular ferries connect from Lipari to Milazzo on the north-east coast of Sicily and travel to the other Aeolian Islands. Buses are available, ,while rental cars and scooters make it easier to get around. Lipari’s town centre can easily be explored on foot.