Ventotene is a picture-perfect island set in the Tyrrhenian Sea. It’s part of the Pontine Islands archipelago and will enchant you with its beautiful beaches and dramatic volcanic landscapes. Spend your days exploring ancient Roman ruins, devouring local seafood and soaking in the holiday atmosphere. With a tiny footprint of just 1.5 square kilometres and a no-car rule, Ventotene is perfect for off-the-grid getaways.
Things to do in Ventotene
In summer, Ventotene hums with holidaymakers in search of Mediterranean sunshine. A beach-hopping tour of the island takes you to turquoise bays and secluded coves. Cala Nave Beach is the most popular stretch of sand and is dotted with colourful umbrellas and deckchairs. Surrounded by rocky cliffs, Cala Rossano is another favourite.
Dining al fresco is a rite of passage in Ventotene. Atmospheric restaurants line Piazza Castello and serve freshly caught shellfish and seafood. Wash down your meal with a glass of Campari on ice. Sweet tooths can indulge in delicious Italian gelato made with local ingredients.
On the northern tip of Ventotene, you can explore the ruins of a lavish villa built for the daughter of a Roman emperor. Wandering around the old port, you’ll also get a feel for what Ventotene was like during the Roman era.
Boat tours depart from the harbour and take you to Santo Stefano, a former prison island perched off the east coast of Ventotene. Today much of the 18th-century jail has been reclaimed by trees and vines. Scuba operators take you to world-class dive spots brimming with enormous barracudas and groupers.
Getting around Ventotene
Ventotene is compact and easy to get around on foot. There are no cars on the island and ferries to Ventotene depart from Formia on the Italian mainland and Ponza, another island in the Pontine archipelago.