Italy is known for fashion, food, and history, just to name a few of its highlights. But after you’re done roaming the ancient sites, stuffing your face with the best pizza and pasta you have ever had and maybe even a bit of shopping (or a lot!), it might be the right time to get some fresh air at the coastal cities. While there are plenty of sites to choose from, these spots are some of Italy’s top coastal destinations.
In Positano, pastel-colored houses dot the coast in a staggered order up the mountainsides overlooking incredibly blue water. During the Middle Ages, this small town was once a part of Amalfi’s maritime republic and in the renaissance period, Positano was a major trading route for ships. The town has come a long way from it’s origins as an old fishing village. Now a modern day renaissance city, this beach town may be a place you never want to leave.
Capri has been a vacation spot since Roman times. Roman emperors would come here to enjoy the idyllic blue waters, and modern crowds still come for the same reason. A very popular tourist destination, Capri Island is a must see, classic Italian coastal getaway, hence the crowds that flock here, especially in the summer months.
Tuscany isn’t just for mountain lovers; the region does have a coastline, and it’s equally as wonderful as the inland areas. Famed for being the final resting spot of Caravaggio, nowadays Tuscany draws more than just artists. Sun-seekers and holidayers alike make their way regularly to Porto Ercole, or Port Hercules, a great spot as a base for luxury holidays.
The Lido in Venice was Europe’s first bathing resort. Back in the 1800’s, the infamous Lord Byron propelled Venice into notoriety, along with the canal city’s only beach. Venice is a luxury destination, and the Lido still receives its fair share of visitors, both local and foreign, and for good reason. This 7-mile stretch of sand and surf is a lovely break away from the cobblestones and alleyways of La Serenissma.
A charming town set within rolling mountains, and in sight of the sea, Sperlonga is awash in history. There are sculptures displaying the story of Odysseus in the museum, which also served as the erstwhile residence of Emperor Tiberius. Romans flock here for the fantastic beaches and this beachside town remains a little of a local secret.
Acireale is probably one of Sicily’s finest beaches. The pebbled beaches in the area are made of old volcanic rock from Mount Etna. It’s an unusual and unique spot to take a dip in the ocean. Although not really conducive to laying out a towel and catching some rays, it’s an interesting experience to explore the sea and swim to the outer rocks. There are ornate churches and beautiful nature reserves that would be of interest to any visitor to this area.
The island of Lampedusa is the southernmost point of Italy. Closer almost to Africa, this island has been shared with the Greeks, Romans, Arabs, and the Phoenicians over the years. It was mostly used a maritime base. Now families and sunseekers frolic on the beaches and swim with the tropical fish and dolphins that live below the sparkling water.