Our Mediterranean medley returns with the third instalment, and this week we’re cruising south towards North Africa. Our destination? One of the world's hidden gems, the island of Lampedusa in the Pelagie archipelago.
Unwind on white sand Rabbit Beach. Swim with grey reef sharks on an included diving excursion. See endangered green turtles in their natural habitat and more, on this three-day Mediterranean cruise sensation.
#3 Cruise-a-Lampedusa: Day One
Cruise south from Birgu Harbour past Marsascala, Marsaxlokk and St. Peter’s Pool to Lampedusa, the largest of the Pelagie Islands some 175 km west of Malta.
Belonging to Sicily’s Agrigento Province, even though its closer to Tunisia than Sicily, Lampedusa is surrounded by crystal-clear waters with white-sand beaches, landscapes that wouldn’t look out of place in the Caribbean or Seychelles.
On arrival, perhaps cool off in the aquamarine sea enclosing Rabbit Beach, voted best beach in the world by Trip Advisor in 2013.
Rabbit Beach is named for its proximity to L’isola dei Conigli (Island of Rabbits), a 4.4-acre natural treasure, accessed by walking a few metres from the southernmost shore of Lampedusa though thigh-high water, unless the tide is out and you can stroll cross without getting your feet wet.
The Island of Rabbits is protected by the Italian government as a nature reserve. You’ll find out why if you visit between July And August and the eggs of endangered green loggerhead turtles start hatching.
The turtles return to their birthplace every year in April to lay their eggs on this island off the Lampedusa coast.
In addition to turtles, there are plenty feathered species to be found on Lampedusa, such as Eleonora’s Falcon, European Shag, Royal Mediterranean Seagull, tree sparrow and occasional guests including flocks of storks and herons.
Under the sea, there’s an entire treasure trove of wonders to discover, as you’ll find out tomorrow on one of our most popular shore excursions.
Today, take advantage of our included Lampedusa Dive. The pristine waters around the islands teem with marine life, with dolphins, fin whales, Curvier’s beaked whale and sperm whales and swordfish regularly spotted, along with the only warm-blooded fish in the world, the bizarre and amazing Moon Fish.
And don't worry if you haven’t scuba dived before, a fully qualified instructor will show you the ropes.
On your dive, marvel at a colourful, rainbow-hued underwater kingdom, starring grouper, snapper, Murray eel, barracuda, amberjack, white bream, lobster, Redfish, mullet, parrot fish and grey reef sharks, which are not hazardous to humans unless provoked.
Later, take a leisurely evening walk down the Via Roma and treat yourself to an Italian seafood feast at the excellent quayside L’Angelo del Mare.
Wake up and enjoy a revitalising dip in the crystal-clear water. After a relaxed continental breakfast, we say farewell to Lampedusa and cruise back to Malta. Disembark at Birgu Marina feeling relaxed and rejuvenated. Proof you don't have to go all the way to the Greek Isles, the Dalmatian Coast, or even the Amalfi Coast to experience the best of the Med.
Tune in for more holiday inspiration next week as our Mediterranean cruise medley takes us to the ultimate gangsters' paradise.