Our favourite fishermen

Some say that Sicily is too expensive for coastal cruising. It’s surely not easy to find reasonably protected and deep enough spots to moor or anchor for less than 55 Euros (that’s low season) and a shock to the system after Greece’s sailing ease. Yet we’ve been lucky so far. Stazzo is one of the dreamy fishing villages we sneaked in. Our favourite. While we were still tying up the stern lines to the dock, Yann, the friend who was staying with us, plunged down the wall we were tied to, to grab the octopus Pablo had sighted. Less than an hour after our arrival we were famous in town. At night, all the elders gathered around us in the (only!) local bar by the plaza overlooking the harbour and sea. We chatted for hours on end, while one Arancini (delicious Sicilian specialty) after the other disappeared from the table together with enchanting local wine.

Once back in bed the eyes fell closed. Mine to be woken again shortly after by a heart-racing engine noise (not our’s) less than a meter from Happy Dancer. Head peaked out of the aft-cabin hatch, followed by a quick jump on deck. Two fishing boats had come in. The guys were shouting and jumping around the deck in the typical joyful Italian manner. Sleepily I added a few fenders and an extra spring line in case the wind was to push us more towards them. Just as I was about to descent the hatch back into the warm and cosy bed, one of the fishermen came over with a fresh tuna. Present for having woken us up. Not enough, the next morning, as we shared Italian coffee and Nutella, they insisted on giving us a few more tuna steaks for the kids. Blessed be the Italian friendliness. Happy Dancer will be remembered for a while in Stazzo’s Blue Bar – and vice versa in our little dancing world.

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  1. I have to say I loved the blog and yes the fishermen here are so friendly. They even took us out on the boat laying nets and then again the next day to haul the nets and the catch in.
    This is our second year around Sicily and we have been all the way round. So far on our cruising we have not had to go in a marina (apart from winter when they are cheap). We have anchored everywhere and never even been asked to pay a penny.
    Excellent blog again.

  2. SO COOL DINI. Love this. Love it so much. I don’t know what I love more. Yann diving for the octopus, arancini (YUM) and local wine, the wonderful fishermen handing over tuna – basically just because they’re good guys. Just… beautiful! but wow, the mooring/anchoring costs are a little sobering. Keep a list of “cheap/free” for me if you would, we’ll be there before too long!

    • Have been thinking bout you guys lots! It’s on my blog to do list to put up a sort of shoestring pilot guide of all wonderful places we’ve been. Greece is easy to sail it on a shoestring, Sicily isn’t, but we’ve still managed and have been having the best of times. If it wasn’t for the yoga classes I’ll be teaching in Malta next week, we’d so stay here for another month! Engine, rats – all issues solved over your end? xoxo

    • Absolutely. We bumped into some of the same guys again a few fishing villages further south – then it was two tuna and one mahi mahi – just like that, unbeliveable. Sicilians must be among the nicest people overall I’ve ever met. Right now we are in a marina – first time we paid, but 30 Euros is nothing compared to high season prices. And the manager just told us to stay till Sunday – for free – as they are organizing a concert here in Maramemi. If it wasn’t for the yoga classes I’m teaching next week in Malta, we’d so take him up in his offer! x

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