Italy isn’t all gelato, pizzerias and exploring historic sites—okay, that’s a big part of a holiday to the country—but let’s not forget about the gorgeous beaches along the coastline of the mainland and its surrounding islands to visit and enjoy. With this in mind, here are five to include on your ‘must visit’ list:
1. Cala Goloritze, Sardinia
Just 200 metres long and unreachable via car or boat, Cala Goloritze, located on the Italian island of Sardinia, is the very definition of paradise and due to the hefty hike required to reach its sandy shores it rarely gets crowded. It’s worth noting that the hike to reach this beach takes over an hour and the trip back twice as long, but it’s worth it and perfect for more adventurous types.
The beach was declared a UNESCO site in 1995, confirming that its crystal clear waters and clean white sand are worth protecting and therefore a visit.
2. Monterosso al Mare beach
This beach can get pretty crowded in the summer months, so be prepared to claim your spot and guard it for the day if you’re visiting in tourist season. While the beach consists of grey pebbles, it is still a popular spot for sun worshippers and there’s also a pretty boardwalk to explore when the craving for ice cream gets too much in the middle of the day.
3. Arbatax Park Resort, Sardinia
Another location on the popular island of Sardinia, the Arbatax Park Resort consists of 60 hectares of parkland and its stunning beaches are well loved by those who visit. For families, it is recommended you book through holiday provider Tots Too and spend seven days or more exploring the sandy shores within the resort—which of course feature gorgeous aquamarine seas and soft sand to rest on for the day.
4. Spiagga di Sansome, Elba Island
This white pebble beach, accessible via a winding narrow path, is worth the effort required to reach it and is ideal for those who love nothing more than pulling on a snorkel mask and diving into the water to peek at the fish and other marine life. Sansome beach features plenty of rocks within its crystal clear waters for explorers to investigate and its location is one of the most stunning on the Elba island coastline.
There is boat, pedalo and sunbed hire available, as well as a campsite nearby, so if you fancy a weekend within your trip away returning to the simplicity of living out under the stars, then this is the perfect location.
5. Cala Marinella, Sicily
When it comes to tranquil beaches, you can’t go wrong with Cala Marinella. Located on the island of Sicily, it features a secluded cove of white sand within a nook of low cliffs. The beach is located within a nature reserve, so there is a fee to pay to access it, but the few Euros you have to spend will be worth every cent. This is another beach that is harder to get to than most, but this also means fewer tourists and a better sense of tranquility for your day trip.