Summer in Tuscany usually means sunny days on the coast, time spent immersed in the region's incredible landscapes that fuse fun and discovery into one. After a day spent at the beach, meander through old town centers, visit museums and squares, admire the monuments and taste some delicious traditional products. The night owls among you can also opt to explore the various pubs, cafes and clubs open all night long. There's something for everyone in this part of beautiful Tuscany.
With the region's lengthy coastline and endless options, it can be difficult to choose a seaside destination that's best for you. To help, here are the highlights of what you'll find along the Tuscan coast from north to south.
This northern Tuscan coastline boasts a unique landscape characterized by fine sandy beaches - all a short distance from the Apuan Alps, the area's majestic marble mountains. The result? A charming waterfront where you can switch between relaxing days at the beach and hiking in the mountains. This beautiful sandy coast stretches 20 km, featuring bathing establishments and nautical centers for watersports like surfing and windsurfing. During the hotter parts of the day, take shelter in the cool and shady nearby pine forests.
In this area you'll also find the beach establishments of Marina di Carrara, Marina di Massa, Partaccia, Ronchi and Cinquale di Poveromo.
This area of Tuscany, situated south of the Apuan Riviera, is known for its endless sandy beaches and summer nightlife. The area boasts almost 25 km of coastline and stunning views: from north to south, you'll see Forte dei Marmi, Marina di Pietrasanta, Lido di Camaiore, Viareggio and Torre del Lago. Like the Apuan Riviera, the Versilia vaunts a varied landscape: about 15 km from the shoreline you'll find the Apuan Alps and hills that gradually descend towards Lake Massaciuccoli, part of a natural reserve (which also includes the Migliarino pine forest and the San Rossore Estate). In Versilia, you'll find pine forests, gay-friendly beaches, Liberty-style architecture and an array of other gems. Check out Versilia off the beaten path: alternative things to do this summer and more things to do in Versilia in the summer.
The Pisan coast is home to Marina di Vecchiano (north of the Arno River) and Marina di Pisa, Tirrenia and Calambrone to the south. Marina di Vecchiano is located in the Migliarino San Rossore and Massaciuccoli Park, an area known for its spacious beach offering both free and equipped sections with modern facilities and resorts. The unspoiled coastline is marked by dunes of exceptional beauty, a sure treat for any visitor. Nearby you'll find Marina di Pisa, a beach zone that dates to a 19th-century seaside resort (local fishermen previously inhabited the town). Like Marina di Pisa, Tirrenia boasts wide and well-equipped sandy beaches, countless accommodations and leisure facilities that are well integrated into the surrounding natural landscape, which are also perfect for children and families. Between Tirrenia and Livorno you'll find Calambrone, an area occupied by a Pisan Port in medieval times. Today Calambrone features long fine-sand beaches ideal for sunbathing - and the cool wind makes it a favorite among sailors and windsurfers.
This stretch of coastline runs from Livorno to Piombino and boasts a wide variety of beaches, from wind-shaped rocks to sandy white coves. Here's a list to plan your trip to the area's most beautiful beach towns.
The area may vaunt magical beaches with crystal-clear water, but it's also known for its wealth of art, history, nature and food and wine.
For anyone hoping to avoid summer crowds, head north of Piombino to Baratti and Populonia. The Gulf of Baratti is a spellbinding Tuscan gem vaunting golden dunes and beautiful pine forests. The area is located near one of the most important Etruscan necropolis in Tuscany. In Populonia, don't miss the path that leads to Buca delle Fate, a small pebble bay unlike anything else. South of Piombino you'll find the beautiful Sterpaia Coastal Park, Follonica and the delightful Cala Violina, a public beach arranged in a half-moon shape featuring white sand and crystal-clear waters (plus a hidden cove). To reach it, you'll have to walk 20 minutes along a woodland trail.
The Maremman coast offers endless opportunities for a beach getaway: from its wildest coasts with isolated spots (in the north) to its southern beach-resort vibe, tourists of all kinds will find their beach desires satisfied. The Maremma is a continuous succession of rocky coast dotted with isolated coves and long stretches of sandy beaches - all protected by lush pinewoods and wilderness areas. Here are 10 beaches to check out; you'll see that the seaside is perfect for all ages. Here, you can sail, rent a surfboard or yacht or even opt for water-skiing and scuba diving.
Among the Maremma's many gems you'll also find a few suggestive areas, such as the Orbetello Lagoon or the scenic, unspoiled beaches of Feniglia and Giannella. This coast is known as the Costa D’Argento and is found next to the Argentario Peninsula and the Maremma Natural Park. Here, you'll find the towns of Orbetello, Talamone and Capalbio, not to mention the Argentario Peninsula (featuring the towns of Porto Ercole and Porto Santo Stefano): just a few of the area's large array of beautiful places.
A visit to the Tuscan coast isn't complete without seeing the islands of the Tuscan Archipelago. Tuscany’s islands are composed of Elba, Giglio, Capraia, Montecristo, Pianosa, Gorgona and Giannutri (in size order), all protected and included in the Tuscan Archipelago National Park. Giglio, Pianosa and Giannutri can be reached by boat from Porto Santo Stefano; Elba Island can be reached from Piombino and Capraia is accessed via Livorno. The Tuscan Archipelago National Park's vegetation is the typical plant life of the Mediterranean, with its quintessential scents and colors - the flora and the fauna are lush and varied. The islands differ greatly from one another, as some are more catered towards young tourists looking for fun, while others are perfect for tourists looking for a bit of nature and peace.