On Tour... VIA DEL SALE Sightseeing Sicily’s Salty Coastline
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Our journey begins in Marsala, along a captivating route that travels the west coast of Sicily, the Via Del Sale or ‘Salt Road’. Marsala derived its sonorous name from the Arabs who named it, Marsal Allah, ‘God’s Harbor’. However, the city’s origins do not date back to the Arabs but to the earlier Phoenicians.
Marsala became famous throughout the world due to its popular dessert wine of the same name which was developed at the end of the 18th century by an Englishman.
Sicily’s west coast contains many small and atmospheric fishing harbors where for thousands of years, the seafood here has been a vital source of both nourishment and income. The Sicilians and Phoenicians were the first to appreciate the region between Marsala and Trapani and thus, transformed each of these towns into a busy centre of trade.
The Salines were once of great economic importance as they represented the foundation of wealth for the people of the Trapani region, whose unique climate, scenery and geography have created the perfect conditions for the salt that is harvested here. Along the entire route of the Via Del Sale, the region’s historic windmills rise up proudly from the Salines. In this part of the world, a boat trip is an ideal way to experience old canals and salt fields and to gain an overall impression of the production of salt.
With their combination of ancient cultivated landscapes, beautiful coastal regions, traditional fishing villages and last but not least, the historic cities of Marsala and Trapani, the Via Del Sale still shines out in its importance as one of the most unusual and striking roads in Sicily.