Villa San Martino is found in the town of the same name, and was purchased by Napoleon in June 1814 in order to make it his summer residence. It was later purchased by Prince Anatolio Demidoff, who had the grand neoclassical gallery built which today houses a collection of nineteenth-century Napoleonic prints.
The historic Volterraio Castle (12th century) is located at the top of a hill on the border between the municipalities of Portoferraio and Rio nell'Elba. It was built on a peak that had been used for defensive purposes since as early as the end of the fourth century BC. Volterraio later became part of the island's defensive system, designed by the Pisan Republic. Thanks to large reinforcement works that were carried out around 1440, the fortress was able to withstand the Turkish attack in 1544. Centuries later, in 1798, the French troops stationed in Portoferraio further strengthened the garrison, but a popular insurrection led to the semi-destruction of the complex, which has since been entirely abandoned.
There are many other attractions in the Portoferraio area, such as the beautiful and austere Pisan Romanesque Church of Santo Stefano alle Trane, the ancient Etruscan Fortress of Castiglione, the Italo Bolano International Art Center and the Giardino Botanico dell'Ottone. In the municipality of Portoferraio, you can also find the Terme di San Giovanni, the only ones to be found on Elba Island.
Portoferraio is the perfect destination for sea-loving tourists, with a varied range of beaches, from the sandy shores of Scaglieri and Forno, to the mixed sand and gravel ones of Bagnaia, Ottone, Le Viste, Viticcio and Le Ghiaie, up to the pebbly shores of Magazzini, Capo Bianco and Seccione. From Portoferraio, you can easily reach all the beaches on Elba Island that are magnificent with their sandy floors and coves that overlook the deep blue.