How to get to Salina, Italy

If you’re planning a trip to Salina, Italy, you may be wondering how to get there. While there is no direct way to reach Salina, there are several options for getting to this beautiful island in the Aeolian archipelago.

Get to Salina by Hydrofoil

One of the most popular ways to get to Salina is by hydrofoil, which is a faster and more direct way to reach the island then using the ferry. Hydrofoils depart from Sicily only. Milazzo, Messina, and additionally Palermo (in the summer months), are a great choice to reach Salina quickly. From Milazzo, for example, there are several hydrofoils operated by Liberty Lines that take around 1.5-2hours to reach Salina. Salina has two ports where ferries and hydrofoils stop: Santa Marina Salina (or S.M. Salina) and Rinella. Most connections stop at Santa Marina Salina and the port is well connected with bus, taxi or renting a scooter.

How to reach Salina

Reach Salina by Ferry

Another option for getting to Salina is by ferry. Ferries depart regularly from several ports on the mainland, including Naples, Reggio Calabria, and Milazzo, as well as from other Aeolian Islands like Lipari and Vulcano. From Naples, for example, there are daily ferries operated by SNAV and NGI that take around 9-10 hours to reach Salina. They are traveling over night which can be a great option to save on one hotel night. From Reggio Calabria, you can take a ferry to Messina, and then transfer to another ferry or hydrofoil to reach Salina.

Reach Salina by Train and Ferry

If you’re traveling by train, you can reach Milazzo or Messina by rail, and then transfer to a ferry or hydrofoil to reach Salina. From Naples, you can take a train to Milazzo, which takes around 6-7 hours, and then take a ferry or hydrofoil to Salina. You can also take the train from Palermo (airport) to Milazzo and then take the ferry / hydrofoil) and enjoy the beautiful coastline while riding the train.

Reach Salina by Plane and Ferry

By Plane and Ferry: The closest airports to Salina are Catania and Palermo. From Catania, you can take a bus or group taxi to Milazzo, and then take a ferry or hydrofoil to Salina. From Palermo you can either take the direct ferry in the summer months, operated by Liberty Lines or you, you can take a train or bus to Milazzo, and then transfer to a ferry or hydrofoil to reach Salina.

Get to Salina by Helicopter

A more expensive but faster way to reach Salina from the closest airports is helicopter. Currently AirPanarea is offering flights from Catania, Palermo and Naples. You need to contact them for pricing.

Easiest way to get to Salina

The recommended way to get to Salina fast and easy is:

  1. Fly to Catania airport, Sicily, Italy (CTA)
  2. take the group taxi (Alibrando, 25€, needs reservation beforehand) or express bus (Giunta bus, ~15€) (about 1:45h) to Milazzo port
  3. Use a hydrofoil from Milazzo (22-26€, book tickets in advance) to Santa Marina Salina (~1,5 hours) to reach Salina (Santa Marina Salina Port).
  4. Use your hotels pick up offer, a cab or public transport to arrive at your destination on Salina

Please note that especially in the summer months ferries and hydrofoils might be fully booked on arrival. Make sure you book your ticket in advance on the website of Liberty Lines or on the NGI website.

Here are some common questions answered on how to get to Salina

How long does it take to get to Salina?

If you land in Catania airport and everything runs smoothly you are able to get to Salina in less than 4 hours. As you might wanna leave some wriggle room for traffic, its better to plan with a little bit of extra time until you need to catch the ferry.

Tipp on how to optimize your time on Salina: If you arrive in Catania airport before 13.30 o’clock you should be able to make to the island easily the same day as Catania is a really small airport and you get your luggage pretty quickly. Try to fly with hand luggage only if you are under time pressure. If its later or your flight has been delayed – try at least to make it to Milazzo the same day and stay the night there so you can catch one of the first ships in the morning. You can always call your accomendation – they are used to delays or also bad weather so no ferries are going and will likely be able to arrange an alternative for you.

How much does it cost to get to Salina?

If you fly in via Catania getting to Salina will cost you about 37 – 51€ (group taxi (25€) / bus (15) + hydrofoil / ferry (22-26€)).

If you fly in via Palermo, getting to Salina will cost you about 60€ (cab+ferry).

Do I have to pay for my luggage to get to Salina?

If you only have hand luggage its normally included in the transfer price (e.g. taxi, bus, ferry). If you have larger items (anything that you would need to check in on a flight) it will cost extra, especially when taking the hydrofoil. So always book larger items in advance as well!

On Siremar ferries, each passenger can bring 1 piece of baggage with a maximum weight of 20 kg for free.
On the hydrofoils of Liberty Lines, each passenger can bring up to 10 kg of hand luggage with maximum dimensions of 60x40x20 cm. Check out their websites on luggage policies for up to date infos.

How fast are the hydrofoils to Salina going?

The hydrofoils connecting the aolian islands are quite fast – they travel with about 70km/h and are looking quite fancy. Fun fact: If you think you have seen these ferries in the movies you are right: The company who makes these hydrofoils once created one for one of the James Bond movies.

How do I get to Malfa, Salina?

To get to Malfa, Salina, you can take a hydrofoil or ferry from Milazzo, a port town located on the northern coast of Sicily to Santa Marina Salina. The journey takes approximately 1,5 hour by hydrofoil. Once you arrive at Salina, you can take a local bus or taxi to Malfa.

Can I bring my pet on the ferry to Salina?

If you travel with Liberty lines, you can bring your pet on board. Make sure to fill out the the information as you book your tickets. If you bring smaller pets a carrier or cage is required. As for larger pets like dogs they must have a muzzle and be on a leash. On the Siremar ferries, there are also areas specially reserved for passengers with pets and kennels on board.

Will ferries to Salina also go when the weather is very windy?

In general ferries and hydrofoils will only stop going when the weather is very windy. This normally does not happen during high season, but there is always the chance that it can get a bit stormy. Check the weather forecast if you worry about that (tipps on weather for Salina). In general ferries are the only way for locals to get to work, doctors and school so be sure that they will go at some point. In general, any wind below 35km/h is fine, anything above might lead to cancellation of hydrofoils and also ferries. Contact your host or hotel – they are the best ones to find alternatives for you. You can also check out the hydrofoils website or their telegram channel (link is the footer of their website) where they announce cancellations.


In summary, there are several options for getting to Salina, Italy, including ferries, hydrofoils, trains, and planes. The exact route you take will depend on your starting point and travel preferences (e.g. traveling to Salina on a budget). With a little planning and research, you can easily reach this beautiful island in the Aeolian archipelago.