The Harbours of the Maremma
If you are lucky enough to be considering a vacation in the Maremma by boat then you’re in for a treat. This corner of Southern Tuscany has some amazing ports, not to mention unparalleled access to the best beaches and snorkeling sites in the region.
We kick off our nautical tour of the Maremma at the Marina Cala Galera on the Argentario Coast. This private marina is located outside Porto Ercole and has 700 spaces. It’s the perfect base for day trips to the most popular islands in the Tuscan archipelago, including Giglio Island with its striking medieval hamlet, castle and secluded beaches, and Giannutri Island, a protected nature reserve with a few spectacular Roman ruins and world-renowned snorkeling and diving sites.
The Argentario Coast itself has more than its fair share of beaches that can only be accessed by sea. With that in mind, a maritime trip around the entire promontory from Porto Ercole to Porto Santo Stefano is a must. However, not all of Tuscany’s islands or coastlines are accessible by private boat, so always run your sailing plans by staff at the local tourist centre or marine authority to make sure you’re not stepping on any local or environmental laws.
Next up is the Marina di San Rocco in Grosseto. Thanks to its location smack bang in the middle of the Maremman coast, this marina is a great one to throw down the anchor and explore on dry land. Grosseto is perfectly placed between the Fiora Valley with its famous ancient Etruscan and medieval tufa cities and the Saturnia hot springs, and the Argentario Coastline with its beaches, port towns and islands. The marina has 561 spaces and is a short distance from the capital of the Maremma, Grosseto, and the spectacular Parco della Maremma nature reserve.
Nearby is the Marina di Punta Ala. Perhaps the chicest of Grosseto’s marinas, this one is located a tiny seaside town that was once home to Italian aviation legend Italo Balbo, considered the “heir apparent” to Italian dictator Benito Mussolini before his untimely death. It was Balbo who renamed this promontory, ‘ala’ meaning ‘wing’ in Italian. The town is famous for its sailing regattas which are held by the local “Punta Ala Yacht Club” and is a tourist destination of the elite in every season, thanks to its luxury residences, second homes and boats moored at the port
The last marina in the Maremma is the Porto di Scarlino, which sits at the feet of the Scarlino Fortress, just a few miles from Elba. Scarlino is home to one of Tuscany’s most famous beaches, the mythical Cala Violina, so named for its pristine white sand, which is so fine, it sounds like the strings of the violin. Cala Violina is located inside the Riserva naturale di Scarlino, another of the Maremma’s spectacular nature reserves. Unlike the Argentario Coast, Scarlino is still relatively undiscovered. Life here is quieter and more relaxed with less tourists and therefore less boats and far less competition as you scour the coastline for the perfect secluded stretch to soak up the sun and enjoy the gorgeous Tuscan summer.