, the remaining time before the departure I was walking around the city - climbed the bell tower, wandered through the streets, took the pictures of the panorama from a high hill...
This is the central square:
, the strait and the opposite "continental" Calabria from the bell tower, where I miraculously managed to get 10 minutes before closing.
Yesterday in Malta I was amazed by fabulous retro buses, and here in Messina other vehicles are popular. Understandably - because of the mafia!
And here are more views of Messina and its surrounding area - from the other point:
Notice the ferries that constantly ply between two shores:
When I came back on board just before departure, I sat on the deck - the Strait of Messina began: the most interesting episode of the route!
The Strait of Messina is the strait between the east coast of Sicily and the southern coast of Calabria. The width at the narrowest point of the strait is 1.92 miles (3.1 km), near the city of
- about 3.17 miles (5.1 km). Natural forms of the shore and rocks, as well as whirlpools at this point, are associated with the legend of Scylla and Charybdis. Messina is connected with the peninsula and with the towns of Villa San Giovanni and Reggio Calabria in Calabria by ferry. In 1957, 220 kV transmission line through the Strait of Messina was built. Its pylons are considered the highest in the world. Later this transmission line was replaced by the underwater cable, but the pylons have been preserved and they are a local landmark now.
Isolation of the huge island of Sicily from the continent is one of the main traffic problems in Italy, so a project of construction of a bridge across the strait has been discussed for a long time. But the realization of this project will be in the very, very distant future: it will be the mega-bridge, which will greatly overcome the majority of pre-existing bridge records.
The length of the central span - 3300 meters (the unique Akashi-Kaiko bridge, the current record holder, has 1991 m);
Bridge width - 60.4 m;
The height of each of the two pylons - 382.6 m;
The diameter of the steel cables holding the bridge - 1.24 m;
The number of steel filaments in each cable - 44352.
Particularly difficult question is of designing two-mile (three-kilometer) bracing beam of the central span and its aerodynamic stability; as well as the existence of such a bridge under construction zone of high seismic activity. In short, there are almost no bridge projects in the world that can be compared to this! Meanwhile, I took a spot on the deck - we are going through the Strait of Messina!
We are leaving the beautiful Sicilian coast.
We are coming in the center of the strait's fairway: continental Calabria is on the right...
We are heading to the narrowest part of the strait - this is the place of the proposed construction of the bridge, and at this narrowest part on the banks, the world's highest towers of power lines have been saved as a memento:
The fleet is big: not the Bosporus and the Dardanelles, of course, but still:
Pilot boat accompanies our ship all the way through the strait:
Here it is - the Strait of Messina: on the right is Sicily, on the left - Calabria.
Pilot boat says goodbye with a friendly siren, and the Strait of Messina is left behind.
How can the Italians live here without the bridge!? And the strait from the 20th deck of "MSC Splendida" looks not so wide!
And Sicily is farther and farther astern - we sail through the Tyrrhenian Sea.