COMUNE DI VENTOTENE
Snaking through the sea at a latitude of 40°47’10” and 40°48’15” N and a longitude of 0°57’25” and 0°59’ E on the Rome meridian, the island of VENTOTENE was created via the deposition of andesite, basalt and tuff effusions following the explosion of a series of underwater volcanoes. Stretching to 2.7 kilometres in length and 850 m in width and standing no higher than 139m above sea level at its highest point (Monte dell’Arco), Ventotene has two main beaches, Cala Rossano close to the ferry port and Cala Nave in front of which stand two high rock stacks (Nave di Terra and Nave di Fuori) and the so-called Scoglietello, although there are other, albeit rather less accessible, beaches at Cala Battaglia and Parata della Postina to the south of the island, Parata Grande and Moggio di Terra to the north west and Capo dell’Arco to the west. Finally, although it has no real beach to speak of, Punta Eolo offers a fine tuff platform which is perfect for both sun-bathing and diving. The best way to see the island of Ventotene and its splendid sea is to take a boat westwards from the Roman port as far as the tuff platform in front of the ro-man fisheries and the lighthouse and then continue to Cala Nave before proceeding past a series of delightful grottoes to Cala Battaglia and the beach of Parata della Postina. Con-tinuing westwards, it is fascinating to see how the rock formation gradually changes until the tuff finally gives way to trachyte and basalt at Punta dell’Arco, after which it is possible to admire Semaforo, Moggio di Terra and Paratela coves, Punta Pascone and Parata Grande cove, the northern most point of the island from which a steep stairway leads up to the village. Dominated by Punta Eolo, the new port and wide Cala Rossano bay and beach are shielded by the Scunciglie stacks where, approximately 500 m offshore, the wreck of the Santa Lucia, a passenger ferry sunk by a British fighter plane on 24 July 1943, lies at a depth of circa 40 m. The modern-day village of Ventotene was laid out in the 18th century by Antonio Winspeare and Francesco Carpi, the same architects who developed the urban layout of Ponza, and still remains virtually unchanged in appearance, huddled round the main square, Piazza del Comune (or Piazza Castello), the church of S. Candida and Piazza De Gasperi. Indeed, the whole of the rest of the island is crossed by just two roads. From an archaeological point of view, in addi-tion to the aforementioned Roman port (1st century BC – 1st century AD), the ancient roman slipway (Pozzillo) and the Roman fisheries, the island is also home to Villa Giulia, a villa dating back to the 1st century AD, which originally occupied the whole of the northern side of the island as far as Punta Eolo. There are also ancient defensive walls at Polveriera and the ruins of a small necropolis in Cala Battaglia. Just over 1 nautical mile south of Ventotene, almost in line with Ischia, the island of SANTO STEFANO covers a surface area of less than 29 hectares and stands no more than 84 metres above sea level at it highest point. The 1,840 metre coastline is dominated by the imposing mass of the former prison, a Bourbon fortress which has been disused since 1965. Completely lacking in natural landing areas, the island is best approached at Marinella, from whence it is possible to sail west past the Romanello rock to the Burrone (or Morrone) landing stage. Continuing westwards, at Punta dei Sospiri the black rock gives way to a reddish strata, while, according to legend, Vasca Giulia was the place in which Ottaviano’s daughter, Giulia, bathed when exiled to the island. Punta Spasaro leads to further landing stages at Porticciolo and Scalo no. 4. Once landed on the island, it is possible to take a guided tour of the Bourbon prison, the building of which, according to a design by Francesco Carpi, was started at the end of the 18th century.
PORTS – DOCKS – BERTHING
PORTO NUOVO, CALA ROSSANO: (40°48' 07 N and 13°26' 02 E). Located to the north of the old port, the new port is protected by a 370 metre seawall at the end of which there is a 70 metre ferry and hydrofoil service quay. A series of moorings off the quay at the end of the seawall can berth large craft of over 15 metres in length. Seabed: sandy. Draft: 2 m - 5 m at the quayside; 9 m at the centre of the basin. PORTO RO-MANO: (40°47' 75 N and 13°26' 17 E). Dug out of the tuff cliffs which extend to the south to form a natural seawall, the Roman port is very shallow and cannot accommodate craft which draw more than 1.6 metres. Seabed: sandy. Draft: 0.5 m - 4.5 m at the quay-side. Berths: 40. Max length: 12 m.
Local Maritime Office: Piazza Castello 1, Tel. 077185291, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
FERRY SERVICES: CAREMAR: ferry and hydrofoil services from Formia and Anzio (www.caremar.it) - VETOR: hydrofoil services from Formia and Anzio (www.vetor.it) - SNAP E SNIP: ferry services from Terracina (www.snapnavigazione.it) - NAVIGAZIONE LIBERA DEL GOLFO: express passenger ferry and jet line services from Terracina (www.navlib.it) - LINEE BUONO: express passenger ferry services from Terracina - SNAV: hydrofoil services from Naples (www.snav.it) - ALILAURO: hydrofoil services from Naples and Fiumicino; catamaran services from Formia (www.alilauro.it) - AQUA AIRLINES: seaplanes services from Roma Urbe airport (www.aquaairlines.com)