The Maremma might be known for her historical sights and incredible cuisine, but the territory also has some of Tuscany’s most spectacular beaches. In fact, it is home to Italy’s best beach for 2014 and 2015, but more about that later.
The thing you need to know about Italian beaches is that they aren’t all free. Usually, they’re divided into paid and free sections. In the paid section, you get a sundeck, an umbrella and use of bathroom facilities as well as a part of the beach that is cordoned off to other users. The free sections are usually pretty small, but there’s a certain satisfaction to not paying for Mother Nature’s bounty that I, as an Australian, can’t resist.
The Maremma’s top beaches are naturally her most popular, but you can still enjoy them, albeit it in the company of the rest of the nation.
Le Rocchette, Castiglione della Pescaia
Walking distance from Castiglione, this beach is paradise. It’s secluded and protected from sight by a rocky cliff, so you feel like you’re on a deserted tropical island. At one end of this beach, you’ll find a pebble cove and huge red boulders, while at the other, a fine sandy beach and crystal clear water.
But it’s not all beautiful sights and calm waters. Le Rocchette was actually voted Italy’s best beach for both 2014 and 2015 by the Italian Touring Club and environmental group Legambiente. It beat out Sicily and Sardenia with their gorgeous island beaches, so it’s quite an accolade and a well deserved one.
L’Acqua Dolce, Porto Ercole
This is my number one favourite beach in the Maremma. I love it. The view from the top of the promontory is to die for – rugged cliffs and deep blue waters that float calmly into the horizon. This beach is one of the locals’ best-kept secrets, so I feel a little guilty about sharing it with you, but I don’t think anyone should miss out on this gorgeous beach with its rock pools and calm waters.
The walk down to the beach is pretty long, about 100 metres from the Strada Panoramica highway, but it’s worth the effort. Secluded and often deserted, this beach is perfect for couples.
Feniglia Beach, Capalbio
Capalbio is unique because it’s the only section of the Maremma with a coastline that runs unbroken for 12km, connecting it with Orbetello, and continuing all the way to Lazio. That’s a lot of untouched and unspoiled beaches, but only half of them are free. Feniglia is the best and is often named Tuscany’s best beach. You can drive almost all the way to the sand, which makes unpacking and dragging all the kids’ beach toys a breeze.
The beach itself is also a lot more kid friendly than L’Acqua Dolce. The sand is finer and gentler on little soles and the water is transparent and limpid. Every day, lifeguards mark off the safest and calmest section of the sea, where you can swim without worrying about the current.
Cala Violina, Punta Ala
Cala Violina is the sort of beach you dream about and is perfect for couples and families. Cala Violina is so beautiful and so popular because it’s inside a nature park. The beach gets its name from the transparent and granular quartz grains that make up its sand, which sound like the humming of violin strings when you walk. The water here is crystal clear and the beach is surrounded by dense and lush Mediterranean vegetation.
Since it’s a nature park, you have to be careful where you go and what you do. Don’t litter and always stay on the designated paths. In the pine forest, there are wooden tables and benches perfect for a picnic in the shade. If you’re adventurous, you can follow the path behind the beach for several miles along the coast. It isn’t easy, but the view is absolutely beautiful.