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  • Salvatore Fuda

Tremiti Islands...The Pearls of the Adriatic Sea

Updated: May 13, 2021

The Tremiti are a small archipelago made up of five islands: San Domino, San Nicola, Capraia, Cretaccio and Pianosa off the coast of the Gargano north of Puglia.

San Domino island is the largest and also the most beautiful from a landscape point of view. Around the island there are several caves, all of which can be visited by boat, including the cave of the Violets and the Bue Marino.

The marine park of the Tremiti Islands, established in 1989 within the Gargano National Park, with its rugged and wild nature is one of the most beautiful natural habitats in the entire Mediterranean, a nature reserve that includes the coastal area that surrounds the five islands, with a fish heritage of fish and crustaceans that live protected at different depths and which, together with the algal formations, make the underwater panorama of rare beauty, ideal for scuba diving, even hunting for photos of the many historical wrecks hidden on the backdrops.

History and legend...

Once the Tremiti were known as "Insulae Diomedeae ", from the name of the Greek hero of Homer buried here and still today, it is said, mourned by his traveling companions, transformed from Venus into the seabirds" diomedee ", with a very particular song and like a baby's cry.

Most of the beaches of the Tremiti are pebbly and the most beautiful places can be reached via steep descents in the Mediterranean scrub. San Domino is also famous as "the island of Lucio Dalla": the great Italian singer-songwriter had a home here and here he composed some of his most famous songs, inspired by the colors and the landscape.

Among the beaches not to be missed in San Domino are Cala Matano and Cala dei Benedettini, which can be reached on foot from the pier and are naturally shaded by Aleppo pines. San Nicola instead offers rocky coasts with few spots for sunbathing, while Caprara boasts pristine coves to be reached by rubber dinghy: Cala dei Turchi, Cala di Sorrentino and the most beautiful, Cala Pietra del Fucile. All the coves and bays of the Tremiti overlook Caribbean waters ranging from deep green to light blue, dotted with caves and boulders with suggestive names. The best time for a beach holiday in the Tremiti Islands is from May to the end of September, with the exception of August, when they are very crowded.

The Sanctuary of Santa Maria a Mare

rises majestically on the coast of the Island of San Nicola, in the Tremiti. From here it dominates the sea. History tells us that the abbey was founded by the Benedictine monks in 1045, on a sacred place.

Today the Sanctuary of Santa Maria a Mare is the symbol of the island. In fact it was also a refuge against the Turkish invasions of 1567 and against the English fleets in the Napoleonic period. The interiors are worth a visit because they have remained practically intact since the time of the monks. You can admire a Cross and a Wooden Statue of Mary with the Child, both of Byzantine style, and a precious mosaic floor recently restored. The external cloister is dominated by a well from which water has been drawn since the 16th century, decorated with the symbols of the Tremiti Islands: the Diomedee bearing a branch of Myrtle.

At the Tremiti it is possible to snorkel, take boat rides and thanks to the proximity to Puglia it is possible to eat dishes based on fish and shellfish.

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