Costa Sud and Costa Verde, Sardinia

Southwest of Sardinia’s capital of Cagliari, SP 71 winds through spectacular scenery of promontories and islands.

Sandy beaches hide in coves between headlands topped by round towers that were built when western Sardinia was under Spanish control.

San Vito Lo Capo, Sicily

Its palm trees, powdery white sand, and crystal-clear blue water make this long crescent near Trapani look a lot like the Caribbean.

Bounded by the soaring rock headland of Monte Monaco, the wide beach of San Vito Lo Capo is adjacent to the Zingaro Nature Reserve, on Sicily’s northwestern coast.

Maddalena Islands, Sardinia

While nearly all the beaches on Sardinia’s fabled Costa Smeralda are either private or only accessible by private boat, those same emerald waters lap the equally beautiful beaches around neighboring Capo Testa and the Maddalena Islands.

The Salento, Puglia

Puglia forms the heel of Italy’s boot-shaped map, and at the very tip of the heel is the even-less-visited Salento, where the Adriatic and Ionian seas mingle off a sublime and largely pristine coast.

Santa Margherita Ligure

There’s a feeling of stepping back into another era in Santa Margherita Ligure. The town recalls a time when ladies and gentlemen spent seaside holidays in the genteel surroundings of candy-colored grand hotels…

Elba

The jagged coastline of Elba, an island off the coast of Tuscany, is dotted by more than 150 beaches, from long sandy stretches to tiny shingle beaches hidden in coves

Sanremo

At the heart of the Italian Riviera is Sanremo, made famous as a watering hole for royalty, nobility, the wealthy who gathered here in the early 20th century.

Ischia

Ancient Greeks and Romans frequented the volcanic island of Ischia, in the Bay of Naples, to bathe in its hot springs amid its luxuriant flora.

Viareggio

In August, when Milan, Genoa, and Florence all seem to have emptied onto this stretch of Mediterranean beach, it may be hard to find the sand for the sea of umbrellas.

Cefalu, Sicily

Set below a dramatic rock on Sicily’s northern coast, Cefalu neatly combines two of Sicily’s most appealing features: a beautiful beach and a historic town to explore.

Rimini

What you see at Rimini is what you get – kilometers of white sand washed by mild waters and covered with row on row of rented beach umbrellas and lounge chairs.

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