Salt Pans of Trapani and Marsala: a place of the heart
Salt Pans of Trapani and Marsala: a place of the heart
Salt Pans of Trapani and Marsala: a place of the heart

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Salt Pans of Trapani and Marsala: a place of the heart

 

SALT PANS OF TRAPANI AND MARSALA: A PLACE OF THE HEART

 

Written by Luca Sciacchitano

 


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Along the road from Trapani to Marsala, known as "The Salt Road" the visitor can not help but admire the extraordinary salt pans, the symbol of our territory, both because the cultivation of salt is one of our main exports, and also because in the last few years they have become a tourist attraction of considerable importance.

I, myself even though I come from Trapani, cannot help but be enchanted by the beauty of these places, which since 1995 have been part of a nature reserve, managed by WWF Italy. It is possible to go along some parts of the Salt Road, which is about 29 km long, on foot, because a bike path that runs along the route of the salt marshes has been constructed.

Within the reserve I visited the Salt Museum, which has origins from not long ago. It was opened in 1986 thanks to the initiative of the Culcasi family, owners of an old windmill near the Chiusicella salt pan, who following some advice, transformed the structure into a museum of salt working traditions.

After it was restored, the Culcasi furnished the windmill with the typical tools of the trade of the salt worker: shovels, hammers, baskets, ropes and wheelbarrows. Nothing is left to chance, and every other detail reminds us of the traditions of the past, so that people who have never even asked themselves about it, can see how salt, a typical and common kitchen seasoning,is produced. There are also many old pictures in black and white, that show how methods of salt production over time changed with the development of new technologies.



Along the SP 21 coastal road there are also the salt pans of Marsala, offering a beautiful view. Not surprisingly they are ranked first place in Italy as "a place of the heart to be saved" - a national competition organized by SANPAOLO IMI.

Next to the salt mines of Marsala there is the island of Mozia, which during its history, became a strategic point for the city of Carthage. It was probably affected by the exploration of the Phoenician sea-merchants, who sailed into the Mediterranean, since it was a landing point and one of the most important commercial bases.



The importance of Mozia began to decline with the founding of Lilibeo, but its destruction dates back in 397BC by the tyrant Dionysius of Syracuse, who conquered and destroyed it.
Mozia was brought back to light in 1875 by Giuseppe Whitacker, who began vast excavation works on the island, finding numerous Phoenician artefacts which are now preserved in the museum of the same name, run by the Foundation dedicated to him, which also owns the island.



These are places that I recommend you visit and do not worry if you have limited mobility or if you are accompanying someone in a wheelchair, because both the salt pans of Trapani and those of Marsala have paths accessible to people with disabilities, as well as the island of Mozia.

Enjoy your visit.

A previous diary Journey to Mozia is available here.

You can also see the photo gallery on Saline clicking here and those on the island of Mozia clicking here.






 


 

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