The national park of Pantelleria covers a good deal of the island to protect the unique ecosystems, landscapes and characteristics of the island. The visitors center is at Punta Spadillo, near a lighthouse, with a museum called Museo Geonaturalistico. It is a good starting point to seeing the myriad sites that make up the park.

With 25 square miles within the park, a good deal of the island falls under its protection for its rural and natural characteristics. The rural heritage includes Pantelleria's agriculture, with its tree-style growing methods for the grapevines, recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage item. The island's archeology, rustic churches, and unusual architectural features are also protected. That covers the intriguing gardens called giardini panteschi, the dammuso housing style, and terracing.

The natural characteristics covered include the flora, fauna and geology, with its volcanic features. The coastal seascapes and Montagna Grande mountain are in there, as well. The island's macchia mediterranea brush, and its caper bushes are part of the flora. A variety of water birds, wild rabbits, shrews and bats are part of the fauna you might see.

The park offers a variety of hiking and biking trails, themed itineraries, and a network of paths.

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Address in Pantelleria:

Punta Spadillo.

Ph. (+39) 092 356 9412.

Rent a holiday house in Pantelleria and travel like a local.