San Nicola L’Arena

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WorldMediterraneanItalySicilySan Nicola L’Arena

San Nicola L'Arena, Sicily, Italy

San Nicola L’Arena
38°01.07′N, 13°37.20′E Chart icon.png
Harbour of San Nicola L'Arena

San Nicola L'Arena is a small fishing village and tourist resort 18 miles SE of Palermo in Sicily. Developed around the 16th century castle of St Nicholas and the church of the same name, its purpose-built harbour offers berths for up to 800 vessels on 14 pontoons. It offers a secure alternative to Palermo for cruisers wishing to leave their boats to explore the hinterland of the island.


British Admiralty
1976 - Capo di Bonifati to Capo San Vito


The prevailing winds around the Aolian Islands during the summer tend to be from NW or NE, although in calm weather seabreezes can be encountered from any direction blowing onto and between the islands. While infrequent, gales are not unknown during the spring and early summer and careful forward planning is necessary as there are only two harbours which offer adequate shelter (and even then, not in strong southerlies). In winter, the gregale is a strong NE wind that can affect the whole of the island group and blow for several days.

Sources for weather forecasts:

  • There is a continuous (computerised voice) weather forecast on VHF 68 - first in Italian and then followed with an English translation.
  • The same forecast is given in Italian and English on VHF coastal stations following a notification on channel 16
  • Navtex weather forecasts are broadcast from stations at Roma, Cagliari (Sardinia) and Augusta (Sicily).


Popular passages/routes, timing, etc.



Also see World Cruiser's Nets.


The harbour is enclosed by two long moles extending NE from the shore. The castle is a prominent landmark at the root of the southern mole. Entrance to the harbour is from due E. Depths of 5.0 - 6.0 metres in the entrance.


Yachts are berthed on one of 14 pontoons extending from both moles. There are 800 berths in total, of which 80 are supposedly reserved for vessels in transit. Maximum length 25 metres. Visiting yachts berth either on the pontoons extending from the N mole, which are operated by the Club Nautico Marina di S. Nicola, or those extending from the S mole, which are operated by Mare Sud. Depths at the pontoons range from around 2.5 metres at the innermost to 4.0 metres at the outermost. There are laid moorings at all berths. Good shelter. Water and electricity on the pontoons. Toilets and showers.

Marinas & Yacht Clubs

  • Club Nautico Marina di S. Nicola, President: Charles Brandaleone, V. Ausonia 110. Telephone: +39 091 8125002; fax +39 091 516577.
    Totally full due to 3 pontoons closed for safety concerns. No space available; recommended to call Termini +39 346.7655355. 09/2013 --(s/v Seatern 06:40, 25 September 2013 (BST))
  • Opposite to Club Nautico asks 50.- euro for 13 meters



Yacht Repairs and Services

Marine Stores

Submit addresses and contact details of marine related businesses that are of interest to cruisers.


Slipway. Fixed crane (15 T). Mobile crane (70 T). Outdoor storage. Engine, electrical and electronic repairs. Wood and fiberglass repairs. Sail repairs. Divers.

Fuel, Water, & Electricity

Fuel station on the N mole (0830 - 1300 and 1530 - 1900). Water and electricity on the pontoons.

Things to do Ashore


List places of interest, tours, etc.

Grocery & Supply Stores

Most provisions can be obtained in the town.


Restaurants and trattorias (some seasonal).




Motorbike & Car Rentals

Garbage Disposal

Bins in the harbour.


Transportation (local and/or international)


Contact details of "Cruiser's Friends" that can be contacted for local information or assistance.


List links to discussion threads on partnering forums. (see link for requirements)


List links external to the wiki such as in Wikepedia.

References & Publications

See Italy.


We welcome users' contributions to the Wiki. Please click on Comments to view other users' comments, add your own personal experiences or recommend any changes to this page following your visit.

Verified by

Date of member's last visit to San Nicola L’Arena and this page's details validated:

  • Data compiled from web research (please update if possible) --Athene of Lymington 13:36, 12 November 2010 (UTC)
  • --s/v Seatern 06:41, 25 September 2013 (BST)

This is a usable page of the cruising guide. However, please contribute if you can to help it grow further. Click on Comments to add your personal notes on this page or to discuss its contents. Alternatively, if you feel confident to edit the page, click on the edit tab at the top and enter your changes directly.

SailorSmiley.gifContributors to this page

Names: Lighthouse, Athene of Lymington, s/v Seatern

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