Coral. The ancient red gold of Trapani - West of Sicily

Coral. The ancient red gold of Trapani

Traditions and Craftmanship


In this city, shrouded in myth and legend, the old town is not only a monumental peninsula of churches, convents and noble palaces, but also encompasses ancient traditions linked to the skilful hand of craftspeople, such as Mediterranean red coral fishing.

Trapani was the undisputed capital of the working of this precious material. It was the Jews of the Maghreb who developed this industry in the 15th century with their ancient knowledge; an art form that became a local tradition, with 25 workshops and a street of trades and guilds dedicated to the “Corallari”.

To admire this art form at its finest, it’s necessary to visit the Museo Interdisciplinare Regionale Agostino Pepoli and explore the sumptuous liturgical and domestic artefacts, and to understand its religious and cultural roots at the Church of San Liberale.

Even today, in the streets of the city centre, you can visit a number of artisan shops and jewellers that still hold this ancient knowledge.