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The Italian city of Palermo is located in the north west of Sicily, by the Gulf of Palermo in the Tyrrhenian Sea. The city has a reputation across the world for its history, gastronomy, culture and architecture with a its origins dating back over 2,700 years. Many visitors flock to the city and it has become Sicily's main hub for culture, commerce and tourism. The city's centre has many examples of fine palaces and churches which give way to areas whose way of life doesn't seem to have changed for centuries. This is perhaps most evident in the markets in Palermo, whose Arabic origins can still be seen today thanks to the noise, aromas, colours, narrow streets and with the excellent array of produce on offer and the general 'souk's atmosphere.
From the city's port, ferry services operate to destinations include Genoa, with a crossing time of 21 hours, Civitavecchia, 14 hour crossing time, Naples, 10 hours and 30 minutes, and Tunisia, 10 hours. It is recommended that foot passengers check in 1 hour prior to departure and vehicles 2 hours prior to departure. For all departures to Tunisia check in should be 4 hours prior to departure.
The Italian island of Stromboli is located off the coast of Sicily and lies in the Tyrrhenian Sea and is one of eight islands that make up the Aeolian group of islands. Visitors to the island tend to have three options of things to do. The first is to wander the pretty streets of the island's main village and soak up the lovely views that are on offer, however, the island's crater is not visible from the village. Next, visitors enjoy taking a boat trip around to Sciara del Fuoco which is a deep black lava scar down the side of the volcano, and is a good place to see Stromboli's explosions, especially after dark. The third activity, and not for the faint hearted or the unfit, is to climb the volcano and see eruptions close up!
Some ferry and hydrofoil services from Sicily and the mainland stop at Stromboli. Alternatively travellers can change on the island of Lipari for a connecting ferry. Stromboli is north-east of the other Aeolian Islands, and the hydrofoils from Lipari can take as much as 1 hour and 40 minutes. Services from Messina in Sicily take just under 1 hour and 30 minutes.