Pantelleria, a rugged island bathed in sun and
blown by the winds

Rising from the heart of the Mediterranean Sea, the island of Pantelleria is strategically positioned between Europe and Africa. It is situated 110 kilometers from southwestern Sicily’s Cape Granitola and just 67 kilometers (41 miles) from Tunisia’s Cape Mustafà (Ras el-Mustafà). It is Italy’s fifth-largest island, with an area of 83 square kilometers (52 square miles), a perimeter of 51.5 kilometers (32 miles), a length of 13.7 kilometers (8.5 miles) and a width of about 8 kilometers (5 miles). This strategic geographic position has made Pantelleria a true crossroads of cultures, with customs and traditions that even today play a part in the nature of the island and its inhabitants. The layout of the land and its geologic history both contribute to a terrain that is particularly fertile and especially conducive to growing to crops such as grapes, capers and olives, all of which have long played a major part in the Pantescan economy. The terrain of Pantelleria is primarily hilly. There are several flatland areas–notably the plains of Ghirlanda, Monastero and Sibà–and islanders have known how to derive the most from these and other precious spaces for agricultural purposes, creating dry stone walls that are beloved, appreciated and even today considered monumental in their scope. The plots of walled terrain that cover the hillsides are nevertheless generous in nature as they produce crops with a flavor that is as unique as it is wonderful.

[…]I don’t think there is a place in the world more ideal than Pantelleria to think of the moon. And Pantelleria is much more beautiful. The endless plains of volcanic rock, the calm sea, the houses with its windows where you can see in the windless nights the lights of the African lighthouses..bottom of the seas ancient amphor with stoned garlands and the remains of some wine corroded over the years..baths in a smokey conch in waters so thick you can walk on them[…]

Gabriel García Marquez