The Pillars of Hercules: Grand Tour of the Mediterranean by Paul Theroux
An account of the author's voyage from Gibraltar, one of the Pillars of Hercules, to the southern Pillar. Instead of crossing the straits, he chose to travel the long way, up the coast of Spain along the Riviera, and by ferry to Corsica, Sardinia, Sicily and beyond, through the near-anarchy of Albania and onto a ship through the Levant with a hundred Turks. On this journey, Theroux remains earthbound, using trains, ferries and cruise ships to discover a coastline as wild in places as anything he discovered in China or Peru. Along the way, he discovers another Mediterranean, that of low-season depression, of urban sprawl, of seldom-visited, unchanged places such as the antique villages in southern Italy.