Certainly, Linosa is so small and tranquil as to drive restless types stir-crazy. There are almost no shops or services (forget trying to find an ATM, though cash is the only tender accepted island-wide); cellphone, TV, and radio reception is scratchy at best. But if you're looking for something remote, and you have some time to fill on either side of a trip to southern Sicily or Lampedusa, I definitely recommend a stop at Linosa, but limit your stay to a day or two.

Contrary to the wisdom that normally prevails about visiting Italian islands in August (that is, to be avoided like the plague), Linosa is one exception where August is actually one of the best months. Even during this, Linosa's peak season, there are no more than a few hundred tourists on the island at once, which combined with the island's time-warp feel creates a real sense of summer-camp camaraderie.

Getting There

Linosa has no airport, so the only way to get here is by boat, either from Porto Empedocle in southern Sicily, or from Lampedusa. Ustica Lines (tel. 0923/873813; operates the faster hydrofoils (3 hr.; 34€ from Porto Empedocle; 75 min.; 20€ to Lampedusa). In Porto Empedocle, buy tickets at Agenzia Pietro Barbaro, Via IV Novembre 3 (tel. 0922/636110); in Linosa at Mare Viaggi, Via Re Umberto 70 (tel. 333/5703885); and in Lampedusa, at Agenzia Marittima Strazzera, Via Stazzone 2 (tel. 348/3538218). Siremar (tel. 0922/972062; runs one ferry per day from Porto Empedocle (6 hr.; 34€ to Linosa; 2 hr.; 5.60€ to Lampedusa). If you would like to book a reserved seat (poltrona) or a sleeping compartment (cabina, minimum two persons) on Siremar's ferries, you'll pay from 20€ to 40€ more, respectively, for each ticket. In Porto Empedocle, buy tickets at Tricoli e Nuara, Via Molo 13 (tel. 0922/636683); in Linosa at Gaetano Cavallaro, Via Re Umberto (tel. 0922/972062); and in Lampedusa at Sebastiano Strazzera, Lungomare L. Rizzo (tel. 0922/970003).

Getting Around 

Linosa's 5-sq.-km (2-sq. -mile) territory is easily covered on foot; roads and hiking paths connect the town with all the points of naturalistic interest. If you'd like to go with a guide, Errera (Via Scalo Vecchio 1; tel. 0922/972041) offers sea tours and minibus tours of the interior.

Fast Facts

The carabinieri are at Via Re Umberto (tel. 0922/972083). The Guardia Medica are at Via V. Alfieri (tel. 0922/972115). Also on Via Alfieri are the pharmacy (tel. 0922/972203), and the post office (tel. 0922/972084). There are no banks, and credit cards aren't accepted anywhere on the island.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.