Lately, I have been bitten by the travel bug. I’m sure that bug bite is not helped by the NY Times travel section, Town & Country’s Travel Issue, and Elle Decoration UK’s Travel Report – which of course I spent the weekend scouring from my porch in Charleston. Not surprisingly I have added a new destination to my “must go” list … Panarea.
Panarea is the smallest and the lowest of Italy’s Aeolian Islands. Located south of the mainland and north of Sicily, Panarea is apparently extremely difficult to get to. There are no cars and no airports, and the island can only be accessed by hydrofoil or helicopter. Sign me up.
The island has no banks and no streetlights, and is covered in olive trees, hibiscus, and bougainvillea (a favorite). People stroll around in caftans and flat sandals, show up at their neighbors houses for long wine filled dinners, and spend their days sunning on the rooftops of their tiny villas. It is one of those islands where there is really only one place to stay … Hotel Raya.