Castellammare del Golfo (Sicilian: Casteddammari; Latin: Emporium Segestanorum / Emporium Aegestensium) is a town and comune in the Trapani Province of Sicily. The name can be translated as "Sea Fortress on the Gulf", stemming from the medieval fortress in the harbor. The nearby body of water conversely takes its name from the town, and is known as Gulf of Castellammare.
Coming from its marina called "Cala Marina", with many restaurants and bars, the urban plan is made of steps and winding streets that lead to Piazza Petrolo or towards the main central gardens, where the town center lies with many shops, cafes and restaurants.
According to the opinion of historians and geographers such as Ptolemy, Diodorus and Strabo, Castellammare del Golfo was born as Emporium Segestanorum, port of Segesta, a nearby city which shared the same vicissitudes until its fall. The Arabs occupied Castellammare del Golfo from 827 AD, and called it "Al Madarig", which means "The Steps", probably due to an uphill steep street leading from the harbour to the area of the fortified bastion. It was the Arabs who first built the castle fortress, later enlarged by the Normans. The Arab building rose on a rocky outcrop near the sea, linked to the mainland by a wooden drawbridge.
The small town is also noted for having been the birthplace of many American Mafia figures, including Salvatore Maranzano, Stefano Magaddino, Vito Bonventre, John Tartamella, and Joseph Bonanno. This is the origin of the Castellamarese war, fought by the Masseria clan against the clan for the control of the Italian Mafia in New York City.
From Castellammare del Golfo you can take a boat trip departing from Cala Marina to the Egadi Islands situated in front of Trapani.
To the east, the gulf of Castellammare has a stretch of 30 kilometres (19 mi) of white sandy beaches.
Castellammare del Golfo has also been a location for various films, the following are the names of a few of them: