During our time in Palermo, we decided to take a day trip to the Salt Pans in the Stagnone Reserve and the Mozia Island. We booked this tour via Viator. Our guide Michael was both a great driver and an informal guide.
Salt Pans in the Stagnone Reserve
Located in the Stagnone Reserve near Marsala, these salt pans are within the largest lagoon in Italy. It took us just under an hour to drive to this region of Sicily. Our driver gave us about an hour to explore the area.
There is a small museum on site within one of the Windmills. You can learn more about the salt making industry here. Considering purchasing some samples of the local salt and other souvenirs.
Island of Mozia
We decided to pay the extra 5 euro for a short boat ride out to a small island known as Island of Mozia. There is another 2 euro charge to get beyond the dock. The Island of Mozia is one of 6 islands in the Stagnone Lagoon. For years, many thought nothing was valuable on this island under Joseph Whitaker cam along. He was strong believer in preserving archeological artifacts. He purchased the island in the early 20th Century and began excavations in 1906. He found a treasure trove of Phoenician artifacts.
The short boat ride to the island was interesting giving you the opportunity to see the Salts Pans from water. The shallow water in the lagoon allows one to see right to the bottom. We didn’t see many fish and just a few birds.
Once you are on the island, you will come across several ruins of buildings from the settlement of this island by the Phoenicians. The small museum was surprisingly full of artifacts including: oil lamps, jewelry, jugs, masks, carving and more. The Whitaker Foundation is now in charge of the island including the museum. The best part of this short trip to the island of Mozia was seeing the statue of the Young Charioteer.
The many prickly pears growing throughout Sicily is amazing. These pesky cacti seem to be everywhere you look. What do the Sicilians do with them? One option is drying out the broad leaves for jewelry or artwork. We noticed that you can find the cactus apple as part of the fruit for breakfast.
Goditi i viaggi!