Best 25+ Italy Beaches

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It is perhaps no surprise that Italy is considered one Europe's best beach destinations given that it is surrounded by water on all sides. With over 5,000 miles of varied coastline there are an abundance of rocky coves, sandy stretches and secluded bays to be discovered.

Many of Italy's beaches are surrounded by stunning backdrops thanks to the natural scenic beauty whether it's a bustling, charming resort or a panoramic cliff location. Italy is also one of the few places where, on occasion, the human world actually enhances this natural beauty. There are a plethora of picturesque villages and ancient towns that spill down to the coast providing a living picture postcard and wonderful places to explore or grab a bite to eat after a hard day on the beach.

Many tourists return every year to the beaches in Italy and although they are popular during the busy summer months, there are so many large golden sandy beaches and secluded coves that they never feel crowded.

The Best Italian Beaches...

  • 1. Cala Goloritze // Sardinia

    Cala Goloritze
    © Yesuitus2001 / CC BY

    Perhaps one of Italy's most iconic beaches, Cala Goloritzè is beautifully positioned at the base of a ravine on the north eastern coast of Sardinia. As with other beaches in the vicinity, the water here is a brilliant azure blue and crystal clear whilst the beach is bleached white by the sun.

    But it is the stunning limestone cliffside and rock formations that really sets Cala Goloritzè apart. Most notable of… read more »

  • 2. Cala Violina // Tuscany

    Cala Violina
    Great for:
    • Swimming
    • Surfing

    Backed by the hilly pine grove and lush vegetation of the protected Bandite di Scarlino Nature Reserve (Riserva Naturale delle Bandite di Scarlino) the beach at Cala Violina is completely pristine. This good-sized crescent of soft white sands looks out over the crystal clear waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea. A nature lover's paradise, this beach is not only among the top-rated in Tuscany, but has been voted the best in all Italy.

    In… read more »

  • 3. Forno Beach // Elba

    Forno Beach
    © Luciano Mortula
    Great for:
    • Snorkeling
    • Swimming

    The third and smallest of three beaches in Biodola Bay, Forno beach is also the best. Set in a picturesque little cove surrounded by forested hillsides and overlooked by fine villas this little beach also manages to escape the worst of the summer crowds.

    The beach here is fine golden sand and the warm Mediterranean water crystal clear, but what gives the cove its particular charm is the way the… read more »

  • 4. Tropea Beach // Calabria

    Tropea Beach
    © Ron Lima
    Great for:
    • Swimming

    Located in the "toe" of Italy as it dips into the Mediterranean Sea is the pretty old town of Tropea. Here you will find the lovely Marasusa Beach with its gently shelving white sands, calm crystal clear aqua waters and stunning cliffs. It is these cliffs and the ancient dwellings that perch on them that really set this beach off.

    Here you have the best of both worlds; you can take… read more »

  • 5. Spiaggia Rosa // Sardinia

    Spiaggia Rosa
    Luca Giudicatti

    "Pink Beach" lies wild and unspoiled on Budelli Island, a tiny expanse of land just off the northern coast of Sardinia in the Maddalena Archipelago. While rare, being only a handful of pink beaches known worldwide, its faint rosy hue is entirely natural. It results from high concentrations of crushed corals and shells among the sands.

    Backed by lush Mediterranean plants and offering glass-like shallows that are difficult to resist,… read more »

  • 6. Spiaggia di Riaci // Calabria

    Spiaggia di Riaci
    Luca Volpi
    Great for:
    • Snorkeling
    • Swimming

    This picture-perfect sand-and-pebble beach has grabbed a prime position on Calabria's west coast, around 10 minutes' drive from more touristy Tropea.

    If you prefer chilled and laidback to loud and lively, then this is the spot. The sands are sprinkled with sun loungers and parasols, and there's a family-first feel here.

    The water's calm and colourful, and the rocky surroundings here make for some outstanding photo opportunities.

    Activities tend to sit on… read more »

  • 7. Torre Mozza // Tuscany

    Torre Mozza
    Great for:
    • Snorkeling
    • Swimming
    • Kitesurfing

    The Spiaggia di Torre Mozza gets its name from the 16th-century tower that juts into the Tyrrhenian Sea in the middle of this long sandy stretch. Originally part of the coastal defences the tower was more recently a restaurant and now a hotel.

    Torre Mozza beach lies within the natural landscape of the Parco Costiera Sterpai. The park forms a natural backdrop of scrub and dunes to either side of the tower. 

    read more »
  • 8. Spiaggia di Fetovaia // Elba

    Spiaggia di Fetovaia
    © DanieleFiaschi
    Great for:
    • Swimming

    Perhaps the most photographed beach on the island of Elba, and it's easy to see why. Besides the near white sand and incredibly clear blue water the beach is protected by the 800 metre headland of Punta di Fetovaia. This granite finger of rock, covered in lush Mediterranean vegetation points out into the Tyrrhenian Sea forming a long, narrow and sheltered bay.

    The beach is also sheltered to the north by… read more »

  • 9. Le Cannelle // Tuscany

    Le Cannelle
    Richard Grant
    Great for:
    • Snorkeling
    • Swimming

    The Spiaggia delle Cannelle lies on the eastern coast of the little Tuscan island of Giglio. Backed by steep Mediterranean slopes this beach of fine white sand is caressed by crystal clear water which ranges from bright blues to emerald.

    Despite its remote location off the coast of Tuscany, Le Cannelle always draws a crowd in the summer. You will generally find a mix of day-trippers from the mainland and others who… read more »

  • 10. Spiaggia del Quercetano // Tuscany

    Spiaggia del Quercetano
    Great for:
    • Snorkeling
    • Fishing
    • Swimming
    • Surfing

    Quercetano Bay is set in the little seaside town of Castiglioncello, not far down the Tuscan coast from Livorno. This pretty spot was put on the map by the cult classic 1960s film, Il Sorpasso (The Easy Life). With its diminutive castle, pine forest and laid-back charm it's not hard to see why Castiglioncello continues to draw a crowd.

    The coastline here is one of rocky outcrops and steep, green cliffs punctuated by… read more »

  • 11. Rabbit Beach (Lampedusa) // Sicily

    Rabbit Beach (Lampedusa)
    Great for:
    • Swimming

    Located on the little island of Lampedusa, 176 km (109 miles) south west of Sicily, Rabbit beach is named after its original inhabitants. Lampedusa is actually closer to the coast of North Africa than it is any other part of Italy and the weather certainly reflects this; rain is rare and summer temperatures can reach 40°C, that's well over 100°F. Of course with its remoteness, getting to the island is… read more »

  • 12. Isola Bella // Sicily

    Isola Bella
    © Gnuckx / CC BY

    Also known as the "Pearl of the Ionian Sea", Isola Bella is a tiny island in a protected bay on Sicily's west coast. With crystal clear azul waters and a backdrop of mountains and pine forests this is a truly beautiful spot.

    The beach here is a pair of coarse, stony sand crescents either side of the island which meet to form a narrow spit of beach connecting Isola Bella… read more »

  • 13. La Pelosa // Sardinia

    La Pelosa

    Lying at the foot of Capo Falcone on the north-western tip of Sardinia is one of the islands most stunning beaches. A stretch of white sand and shallow, turquoise waters make La Pelosa everything you could desire from a Mediterranean beach. In addition to all this the beach has a secure enclosed feeling with the island of Piana just offshore and guarding the channel to the north a sixteenth century… read more »

  • 14. Minori and Maiori beach // Amalfi

    Minori and Maiori beach
    © Perseo Medusa

    For some reason these two neigbouring beaches on Italy's Amalfi Coast are always mentioned in the same breath. So, here you get two fantastic Italian beaches for the price of one!

    Now, my limited knowledge of all things Latin tells me Maiori means something bigger and Minori something smaller, which sums up these beaches. The beach at Maiori is in fact the longest stretch of unbroken sand on the whole… read more »

  • 15. Cala Mariolu // Sardinia

    Cala Mariolu
    © Elisa Locci
    Great for:
    • Snorkeling

    Not far along the coast from the stunning cove and rock formations of Cala Goloritze is another Sardinian gem, Cala Mariolu. This little beach is set at the foot of plunging limestone cliffs which contrast with the stunningly clear blue water of the Gulf of Orosei. So alluring is the water here that I challenge anyone to not take a dip. Given how clear the it is no surprise this… read more »