If you wish to visit Italy during summer probably you need some tips about the most sought-after destinations, so we chose 5 unmissable places according to the staff of Secret Italy, a blog focused on Italian lifestyle, updated with articles about the latest fashion trends, the best design products, the Italian dishes most liked by foodies and the hidden gems which each traveler should visit.
One of the criteria we followed is the number of Blue Flag beaches, the prestigious award for clean water and pristine sands, assigned to 248 beaches in Italy. To spend a nice holiday, of course, is also essential to choose a place full of natural beauties and funny activities to do in summer.
Let’s start our trip across the Belpaese!
Pietra Ligure, the pearl of the Riviera
Liguria is the region with the cleanest beaches in Italy and Pietra Ligure is a destination loved by poets, novelists and actors, maybe because is a truly inspiring place, due to its mild climate, its Castle (built by the Romans) and its charming downtown, full of cafes, stores and churches; Pietra, in fact, is also known as the pearl of Riviera.
In summer takes place a ceremony that we suggest to see: the Lights at Sea Festival on 19th July and 21st August, an initiative which consists in a series of small rafts of candle lights floating in the sea to create the effect of lightning of the sea. This could be a very romantic welcome for who comes for the first time in Liguria and wishes for a daydreaming experience.
Monte Argentario, the hidden side of Tuscany
Many people dont’ know that the promontory of Monte Argentario was an island of the coast of Tuscany, later connected to the mainland because of the sea streams; now is a wonderful venue for an active holiday, thanks to its wildness, its rocky coastline and its splendid views. Monte Argentario it’s different from the rest of Tuscany: here you will find a jagged shoreline, many woods of pines and oaks, grottoes, olive groves and vineyards which interrupt the thick Mediterranean scrub.
This promontory features numerous harbors and two port towns, Porto Santo Stefano and Porto Ercole, the most requested by tourists because of their elegant resorts and the plenty of restaurants and bars. In Porto Santo Stefano we suggest a stop at the Spanish Fortress, dated back to XVI century and now seat of the Museum of the Masters of the Axe and the permanent exhibition Submerged Memories, a collection of archaeological finds, mostly of Roman origin, found on the sea bed and along the coast of Argentario.
Porto Ercole is the most peculiar town here, above all the old Borgo Antico, the historic center where the church of SantErasmo rises: the locals say that here was buried the famous painter Caravaggio, but the tomb hasn’t been found. If you prefer to dive into a turquoise sea, the Argentario offers small beaches with fine sand, especially on the west coast of Monte Argentario, beaches that are harder to get and also uncrowded even in August.
Discover this hidden gem and avoid the usual tourist routes!
Scopello, a superb beach in Sicily
Scopello is a scenic spot for an excursion or a swim, lesser known compared with others locations in Sicily but liked by trend-setters and film directors for its amazing stretches of rocky coastline and the green hillside that encloses this hamlet.
The name Scopello derives from the Latin scopulus and means cliff, is very close to the Natural Reserve of Zingaro, an unpolluted area which is can only be visited on foot. The main attraction in Scopello is the sea stacks, known as Faraglioni, a sort of rock towers in the sea! Scopello isn’t a destination suggested for its facilities, but is one of the best places in Sicily for swimming, scuba diving and sunbathing.
We suggest to hire a boat during your stay in Sicily because is the easiest way to explore the north-western corner of the island and discover the most charming coves.
Stintino, a slice of Heaven in Sardinia
Sardinia is always a must for summer holidays, despite that we recommend to go to Stintino in the province of Sassari. This seaside resort boasts a seabed with unique colors and wonderful beaches as La Pelosa, facing the island of Asinara, a beach where dominate the whiteness of its sand and the transparency of its waters.
Here you will notice a Saracen tower built in granite rock (known as Tower of the Falcon); from the top of the tower you can enjoy a panoramic view of the entire Gulf of Asinara. La Pelosa in Stintino is a natural paradise; we recommend swimming with mask and snorkel to see the beautiful fishes and the richness of the sea bottom.
Go to the beach is easy thanks to the shuttle service, so you can get total relax and forget the stress of everyday life.
Torre Sant’Andrea, how to fall in love in Apulia
Do you know Salento? This part of Apulia is full of seaside resorts; our tip is to visit Torre Sant’Andrea, in province of Lecce, dominated by a large pine forest that reaches up to the Lakes Alimini. This destination, many times awarded with Blue Flag for its sea with colors from emerald green to cobalt blue, is renowned for its stunning stacks and the Grotta degli Innamorati (the Cave of Lovers), a grotto where two young lovers died because of the high tide, not having realized the occurrence of a violent storm. Plan your trip to Apulia including this wonderful venue, it will be an enviable summer vacation, ideal for swimming, romantic walks and sporting activities as windsurfing and kite surf.
These 5 Italian destinations are a fulfilling sample for an exclusive travel experience, this summer you’ll be spoiled for choice!