The Tuscan archipelago is a group of islands located between the Ligurian and Tyrrhenian seas. The largest of them is the famous Elba Island. All islands are included in the Tuscan Archipelago National Park - the largest marine national park in the Mediterranean. Today, with unique nature and unspoiled landscapes, the sunny islands of the Tuscan archipelago attract adventure seekers, divers and yachtsmen from all over Europe.
On the islands, each of which is unique, travelers can see historical monuments and outstanding natural attractions. Today, some of the islands are open for visits all year round, some of them have a permit to visit. For environmental reasons, the island of Montecristo is periodically closed to tourists.
The flora of the archipelago is typically Mediterranean, and the fauna is represented by numerous birds (including the endemic rare Odouin's gull), amphibians, marine (for example, monk seals and whales) and land mammals (the most numerous are martens and rabbits). As experienced travelers 2yachts note, in addition to the traditional beach holiday, you can see a number of interesting historical sights and stunning natural beauty.
The Elbe has all the conditions for a relaxing holiday: a unique mountainous landscape, many beautiful beaches at any time of the year, picturesque vineyards, thermal springs and small pretty towns with colorful streets. Here is the headquarters of the National Park.
A huge number of attractions are in one way or another associated with the name of Napoleon Bonaparte. These include, for example, the Palazzina dei Mulini - a country villa, the former residence of the deposed emperor in exile on the island, or the Napoleon House Museum. It is also worth visiting the Church of Mercy of the 17th century, the Cathedral in honor of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary of the 16th century, built to protect against the attacks of the Turks The Medici fortress walls, the Villa Saint-Martino located among the picturesque countryside nature and the Archaeological Museum with exhibits, introducing visitors to the history of economic activity on the island.
Castello di Volterraio Castle is a stone fortress built on a high promontory, from where you can observe beautiful views of the Portoferraio Bay. Breathtaking views from the observation deck of the Monte Capanne massif. On a yacht you can visit the most inaccessible bays of the island, for example, the Grotta della'acqua cave. The luxurious sandy and pebble beaches of the island, distinguished by the purity of the water, are also noteworthy. Some of the island's most popular beaches, famous for their colorful sands, include Porto Azzurro, Lacona, Le Ghiaie, Marina di Campo and Rio Marina.
The island of Giglio is distinguished by a wide variety of nature and is very popular among travelers not only from Italy, but also from all over Europe. Tourists are attracted here by the striking beauty of the wild, the abundance of underwater life, clear waters and the cruise ship Costa Concordia stranded off the coast of the island.
History lovers should visit the ancient Roman ruins and defensive towers. Also, one cannot ignore the church, the main temple on the island is the church of St. Peter the Apostle of the 15th century. The coastal waters organize fishing of various types, there are sandy beaches open to the free visit, and there is also a diving school on the island.
On the island of Capraia, the traveler should visit the historic Tsenobit tower, the San Giorgio fortress, the Stagnone pond and the Bellavista rotunda, from which the island of Elba can be seen in good weather. The island is covered with lush vegetation, thanks to the eruptions, a unique landscape has formed on it, and for the abundance of birds living here, it is also called "Seagull Island".
On your yacht trip, it is worth visiting the Cala del Vetriolo bay with spectacular lava flows, the Cala del Ceppo bay, the beautiful Cala Rossa bay and the Cala dello Zurletto bay with a tower-shaped rock. In coastal waters, dolphins and whales can be observed in their natural habitat.
The island of Montecristo became world famous after the release of the novel by Alexandre Dumas "The Count of Monte Cristo". As the area of the island is protected by the state, the marine life is very active here. It is home to endemic animal species and rare plants.
Among the must-see attractions are the Fort Montecristo, built to protect against the corsairs, the monastery and cave of St. Mamilian, the Botanical Garden and the Museum of Natural History. The island has limited access and guided tours are only available.
A special feature of the local cuisine is the active use of olive oil, and bread is a must in most recipes. An abundance of vegetables is also characteristic, and local aromatic herbs are used as seasonings.
As in other islands of Italy, a variety of seafood and fish dishes are prepared here. The local restaurants will surprise you with the variety of fish, and complement your delicious dinner with locally produced delicious wine. Traditional dishes include sburrita fish soup, dried stokkafisso cod, imbollita fig flatbreads, and gurgulione vegetables.
Travelers to the islands have the opportunity to enjoy the clear sea and beaches with soft sand, devoting time to walking or diving. The waters near Pianosa and Elbe are very popular with divers. Divers will definitely not be bored here - the sandy seabed, covered with a layer of algae, serves as a shelter for thousands of different living creatures. Among the underwater inhabitants of the archipelago there are about 40 species of fish, two species of dolphins and sea turtles that have almost disappeared in the sea waters of Europe.
Vacationers have access to windsurfing, water skiing, yachting, catamaran riding and other popular water activities. You should definitely visit the Acquario dell'Elba on Elba Island.
All major islands have hiking trails, some of which are accessible not only for hikers, but also for those traveling on horses and bicycles. Horseback riding tours, walking tours and kayaking trips are organized on the islands.
The islands of Giglio, Elba and Capraia are available for entry on a yacht - the latter two are the most frequently visited by yachtsmen. Most often yacht charter trips start at marinas on the Tuscan coast and include the islands of the archipelago and the French island of Corsica.
The islands with a wide variety of beaches and amazingly beautiful nature have wonderful routes for outdoor activities: in order to visit some of the protected areas, you will have to go trekking or learn to swim in a kayak. The typical maritime climate with mild winters, warm summers and occasional rainfall makes yachting on the islands of the Tuscan archipelago so popular. Most of the time the northwest Mistral wind blows, followed by the hotter southeast Sirocco in the summer months.
The islands have ports and marinas where you can shelter from the weather or stay overnight:
Sailing with your own or rented yacht is the best way to explore the scenic shores of the islands with many small coves, caves and cliffs. Small in size, the islands of the Tuscan archipelago offer a wide variety of yachting routes, beautiful beaches, entertainment and celebrations.
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