The Scala dei Turchi is a rocky cliff on the coast of Realmonte, near Porto Empedocle, southern Sicily, Italy. It has become a tourist attraction, partly due to its mention in Andrea Camilleri’s series of detective stories about Commissario Montalbano.

The Scala is formed by marl, a sedimentary rock with a characteristic white color, formed from the tests of planktonic foraminifera. They belong to the Trubi Formation, a marine sedimentary unit of the Lower Pliocene (Zanclean) age, which was deposited after the Zanclean flood, in which the Mediterranean refilled after having previously nearly completely desiccated during the Messinian salinity crisis.

The Scala dei Turchi takes its name from the Saracen pirates, improperly called Turks by the local populations (as the Arab people were called by convention), who in the 1500s used to land on this particular rocky formation to plunder the coastal villages such as the modern-day Realmonte. This natural staircase, hence the name “scala“, sloping into the blue water, made it easy to land from the sea for pirate raids, in a place sheltered from the winds and probably also poorly controlled.

The Scala dei Turchi is a candidate to become a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Sicilian Regional Assembly unanimously decided to protect this beautiful natural coast by proposing its candidacy as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In August 2007, the municipality of Realmonte had already submitted an official request to UNESCO for this geological site, together with the nearby Roman villa of Durrueli, to be included in the World Heritage list.

La Scala dei Turchi has been chosen by many directors Such as Giuseppe Tornatore as the natural setting for some scenes in their films. Among the most important ones are Malèna, Inspector Montalbano, At War with Love and Arritmìa.

According to the Internet