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Italy is the jewel in the crown of the Mediterranean, and as you would expect from a country surrounded almost entirely by the sea it features some of the most beautiful and impressive beaches. We’ve chosen 5 of the best beaches in Italy (in no particular order) covering both popular resorts and hidden getaways. But wherever in Italy you choose to holiday by the sea, you’ll find golden sands, clear blue seas and the style and glamour which only Italy can provide.
On Italy’s eastern coast in the Abruzzo region, the city of Vasto has a broad sandy beach lined with palm trees and a rockier more remote area to the north perfect for fishing—a major part of the local economy. On the central part of the beach you’ll find beach huts and shallow water ideal for swimming. The city itself is a pleasing mix of old and new making this a great destination for all the family.
- Best time to visit: This is a classic family-summer-holiday beach popular in the summer months. But despite its popularity it’s still quieter than some other areas. Plan a holiday here in the summer months of July and August and enjoy summer the Italian way.
- Nearby accommodation: There are several hotels located close to the beach and the city itself provides several options to suit your budget.
- What to take: The beach itself is separate from the main city so unless you are staying close to the marina itself you’ll need to take all the necessaries for a day at the beach. The area is popular for sea fishing. However, be sure to check local permit restrictions before packing your rod and line.
Of all Italy beaches, those on the Amalfi Coast are some of the most popular. This area offers various beautiful bays and coves to choose from. The shingle-clad cove at Spiaggia del Fornillo is a highlight, surrounded by dramatic scenery and the town of Positano itself. This beach is a quieter option from the main beach at Positano, and ideal for families seeking space away from the crowds. It is a must to explore all the corners and curves of this beautiful costal area. Create an Amalfi coast itinerary so you dont miss out on any of the places!
- Best time to visit: The Amalfi Coast is popular during the Italian summer holiday months of June–September but visit in late Spring (April–May) or early Autumn (September–October) for sun and relaxation away from the crowds. Positano in the summer months’ head here for a less chaotic option compared to the town’s main beach, about a ten-minute walk away.
- Nearby accommodation: Positano offers a wide variety of accommodation. However, rooms get quickly booked during the summer months, so be sure to plan your trip well in advance.
- What to take: The beach is about a ten-minute walk from the main Positano beach but deck chairs and umbrellas can be hired. There is no shortage of refreshments but if you’re planning on staying all day be sure to bring plenty of water and sunscreen. Sandals are useful too as the beach is shingled rather than sandy.
This beach is worth including amongst the best beaches in Italy due to its proximity to the Italian capital of Rome. At around 40 km from the eternal city, and easily accessible by train from Rome’s central Termini station, the beach at Anzio not only has a wide sandy beach but also considerable historical connections; it was a favourite spot of the infamous emperor Nero.
- Best time to visit: It’s places like this that Romans escape to in high summer when the heat of the capital becomes unbearable. If you find yourself in Rome during late July and August, take the train out to Lazio for a cooler climate and some seaside refreshment.
- Nearby accommodation: The beach here is more a day trip than a destination, and with its proximity to Rome you will find accommodation to suit all budgets close at hand.
- What to take: If you travel here by train, pack light though don’t forget to bring plenty of water and sunscreen along with you especially at the height of summer.
Tuscany’s glorious beaches are famous throughout Italy and those on the island of Elba are particularly beautiful, attracting many visitors. The island is a popular holiday destination for Italians and while getting there requires a ferry ride from the town of Piombino on the mainland or an internal flight to the small island airport, it is well worth it. The beach at Sant’Andrea is a quieter option and it has shallow water which is good for swimming. The area is especially good for children since the sea is shallow and calm. Located along a golden sand strip with a good number of bars and restaurants makes it an ideal place to party as well as to relax.
- Best time to visit: The island maintains a temperate climate all year round but is a good option in the hotter summer months of June–September when the mainland can be uncomfortable.
- Nearby accommodation: The island has accommodation suitable for every budget with an emphasis upon small, friendly, family run hotels.
- What to take: The island is a smaller alternative to nearby Corsica but is big enough to have all the amenities you’ll need. You will need your own transport to fully explore the island.
The Italian island of Sicily is well known for its spectacular beaches and if you’re planning a trip to the island there are plenty to explore. The town of Cefalu on Sicily’s northern coast is an attractive medieval gem with an impressive Norman cathedral, while the beach is busy but less so than the other popular resorts on the island and is a good choice for families given the wide range of amenities available.
- Best time to visit: Sicily is a year-round destination but like many places, it gets busy during the summer months. With a temperate climate Cefalu is a good option for a beach holiday in the spring months of April and May or in late September and October, when the resorts are quieter but the sun still warm!
- Nearby accommodation: There are plenty of hotels in Cefalu if you are planning to base yourself here. There are several options to suit all budgets in the town and a good transport links to other parts of the island.
- What to take: The town has all the facilities you would expect, and you can hire deck chairs and umbrellas on the beach, it’s a good option for families too making this one of the top Italy beach resorts. Also, be sure to carry a sunscreen.
Above listed are a small selection of the best beaches in Italy, from quiet stretches of golden sand to vibrant coastal resorts—you name it and Italy has it all. Italy beaches offers a blissful experience be it any time of the year. But if you are up for something more than just a beach experience while in Italy, these Italy tours can open horizons for several other activities.
Furthermore, these beaches can be a part of your customized tour to Italy with the help of our local travel experts. For a seasonal overview, read our travel article on the best time to visit Italy or for more information read our article on how many days to spend in Italy.