Scattered between mainland Tuscany and Corsica, the Arcipelago Toscano is a chain of islands surrounded by the Ligurian and Tyrrhenian seas. It comprises seven main islands and a handful of rocky islets that are said to have originated from a necklace lost by Venus.
The archipelago’s beautiful beaches, dramatic cliffs and Mediterranean scrub are protected within Parco Nazionale dell'Arcipelago Toscano, which can be explored while hiking, mountain biking or participating in a range of water sports. Snorkelling and scuba diving are possible in the surrounding waters, with a highlight being the island of Pianosa.
On the archipelago’s largest island, Elba, you can learn about Napoleon’s exile here at the National Museum of Napoleonic Residences. Reconstructed mining scenes and minerals are exhibited at Rio Marina’s Minerals Museum. Be sure to wander through the labyrinthine streets of Giglio Castello, which is topped by a 12th-century castle.
Ferries connect to the Arcipelago Toscano from Porto Santo Stefano, which is around two hours’ drive from the centre of Rome. Leonardo da Vinci–Fiumicino Airport is 1.5 hours away and has flights to destinations across the globe. Buses travel around the bigger islands while the smaller islets can be explored by boat.