The stacks and the baglio of Scopello
The Trapani area boasts an innumerable number of places, sometimes small in size but still beautiful and interesting to visit. A clear example is represented by Scopello, a fraction of the municipality of Castellammare del Golfo famous nationally and not only for its particularities.
History of Scopello
The name of this locality is probably due to the dense presence of rocks, which in Latin were called scopulus and in Greek scopelos.
The first settlement took place in the Hellenistic era, while the following ones were with the arrival of the Romans and then the Arabs. In the 1930s, Emperor Frederick II of Swabia granted the land of Scopello to the Piedmontese Oddone de Camerana and the Lombard knights, who arrived with him in Sicily. In 1237, following the displacement of Oddone di Camerana and his Lombard knights to Corleone, and the emperor Frederick II granted Scopello to the city of Monte San Giuliano (now known as Erice).
Later Ferdinand II of Bourbon elected the Scopello area, with the nearby wood of the same name, to the rank of royal hunting reserve (visiting it twice in 1830 and 1859). On the occasion of the expedition of the Thousand, the Scopellese sided with the Bourbon side, so much so that they waged a battle (between December 1862 and January 1863) with the Piedmontese forces who could not easily settle in the village.
The stacks and the beam
As already mentioned above, Scopello is a famous location both in Italy and abroad mainly for two things: the stacks and the baglio.
The stacks are three rocky peaks located in the north-west of the coast of Castellammare del Golfo (the municipality that also includes Scopello). They are surrounded by lush Mediterranean vegetation (dominated by the prickly pear), while in terms of fauna, the Mediterranean herring gull dominates.
The baglio, on the other hand, is a building of Arab origin that dates back to the 17th century. It is a quadrilateral structure, around which a medieval village develops which still retains its authentic rural aspect. A place where you can breathe the history of Scopello, just like visiting its tonnara (among the most important and ancient in all of Sicily).
Activities and excursions in Scopello
Scopello offers various possibilities, from a walk in the ancient village to the rediscovery of the ancient traditions of the area with the trap to diving and snorkeling in the beautiful sea that bathes this town.
Alternatively, from Scopello you can access the Zingaro Reserve (a protected area of great naturalistic interest). A show from this point of view, which combines a crystalline sea with an uncontaminated area in terms of flora and fauna. This sort of small earthly paradise, in fact, boasts about 800 species of plants and 40 of birds.
Rocky beaches and coves
Among the various beaches in the Scopello area, the most famous can only be the Faraglioni Beach. The waters that bathe the famous stacks of Scopello are crystal clear, as well as hiding seabeds that attract the interest of diving and snorkelling enthusiasts. It is a small beach, which always attracts many tourists and with paid admission. An expense, however, that is worth making.
Another famous beach in the area is that of Guidaloca, interesting for the variety it offers from every point of view. In fact, free areas alternate with others equipped with sunbeds and umbrellas, as well as being partly sandy and partly rocky. For those who want a more secluded and “uncontaminated” place, Cala Bianca is the ideal beach.
At a culinary level, Scopello is a place very influenced by both the Arab and Trapani traditions. One of the typical dishes of the area is pane cunzato, a sandwich seasoned with oil and filled with various local products. Among the most popular of are the anchovy fillets. Other dishes that are particularly characteristic of this locality are the couscous alla trapanese, the meatballs alla trapanese and the busiate (long macaroni, also originating in the province of Trapani).
These and other typical dishes of the area can be tasted in the numerous restaurants, including Made ‘n Sicilia Dolce & Salato. This place offers a great variety of dishes from the area, both land and sea. It also boasts an excellent selection of Sicilian wines. Another quality place is the Nettuno Restaurant Bar which, in addition to the goodness of the dishes it offers, has a terrace that offers one of the most breathtaking views of Scopello.
How to come
Having your own car or a rental car and starting from Palermo, you can reach Scopello by taking the A29 Palermo-Mazara del Vallo motorway to go to the Castellammare del Golfo exit. Then you have to take the SS187 towards Trapani, up to the junction for Scopello. A journey that should last about an hour and a quarter, while starting from Trapani it takes about 40 minutes. There are no bus connections between Palermo and Scopello.