Elba is an Italian island in the Tyrrhenian Sea’s Tuscan Archipelago National Park. It’s known for its beaches, and as Napoleon’s place of exile in 1814–15. (Wikipedia)
Did you know that Elba is part of Tuscany? You can find my guides to the Tuscany mainland on our website
How to get to Elba Island?
The Island of Elba is ideal for those who want a truly quiet, peaceful and relaxing holiday. But it is also appeals to all those who love hiking in Elba and cycling. Many trails cross over the whole island, offering views to keep you in constant awe. Capoliveri with its amazing mountain bike park attracts mtb fans from all over the world.
To get to Elba is easy, as it is super close to the Tuscan mainland with only 10km of water in-between. With frequent ferry crossings from the main harbour at Piombino in Tuscany to Portoferraio, arriving on Elba is possible most of the day. The two main ferry companies are Moby and Torremar.
If you prefer to fly, you can also do so. Elba’s airport is centrally situated in the Municipal of Campo nell’Elba
The Beaches of Elba
The Island has numerous beaches, 126 to be precise. Some with golden sand, others are filled with white and grey pebbles, and you can even find beaches with large rock slabs. If you seek and are willing to take a bit more of an adventurous path, you will find rocky hideaways ideal for those few hours alone and away from it all.
Needless to say, to list the best beaches on Elba is nearly impossible. Because every one of them has its special feature. In the end it also comes down to how accessible is your chosen beach on Elba and whether you can get parked. Which may be your biggest problem.
Some have paid parking lots but these are fill up super quickly. Therefore, better not to count on these if you are heading to the beach mid-morning.
The only other option is to seek a space along the road, which is not always easy if you have a slightly bigger car, and nearly impossible if you travel in your campervan.
Many beaches on Elba are accessed by narrow paths for several hundred meters. So be prepared to carry your beach belongings with you. Pack accordingly!
We found that the later in the afternoon you are heading to the beach, the better the chance to get a parking place close to the beach or access path.
Marebus Service on Elba
We have seen on both sides of the island, north and south, there is a MARE BUS transport system running. The perfect way to avoid parking problems and assure easy beach access. Check out the Marebus system and time table here.
From which Elba Beach can I see the Sunset?
If you wonder from which beach you will be able to see the sunset on Elba we have found a good indicator.
Firstly, if you can see the end or Corsica (North west side) you will be able to see the sunset. Secondly, another refence will be the island of Capri. The sun basically sinks in to the sea somewhere between Corsica and the end of Capri.
Below on each beach description I have written if you can see the sunset or not. And with seeing the sunset I mean when the sun is really sinking into the sea and not just disappearing behind the Elba mountains.
Map of Elba with some of the Most Beautiful Beaches
I have put together a selection of some of the best beaches on Elba. On all of these beaches we have played, swam in the sea and hunted for shells and beautiful stones. To the disappointment of our kids, the beaches on Elba do not have many shells.
On our Elba map you will find the location of all the selected best beaches on Elba, in our opinion!
Our Collection of the Best Beaches on Elba
Prunini Beach – Near Portoferraio – North Elba
Our accommodation on Elba had direct access to Prunini Beach, also called Seccione, which was perfect and meant no searching for a parking place. Beautiful pebbles and lush Mediterranean greens can be found at Prunini Beach. It stretches about 150m along the crystal-clear water and is max 7 m at the widest point.
One section of the beach has an establishment where you can rent sun umbrellas, sunbeds, pedalos and kayaks. It is also possible to purchase small refreshments.
The Prunini beach is accessible from the main road by 200 steps (126 from our accommodation).
We felt it is a quieter beach than others which may be due to the limited parking possibilities or simply as left and right of Prunini Beach are the famous Capo Bianco and Sansone beaches.
What we loved is that we were always alone at the beach for sunset. If you walk to the far end from the steps you can see the sun finishing its day in the sea. Simple beautiful
Note Prunini Beach is also known as “Spiaggia Seccione”
Beach Tip: If you would like to go and see Capo Bianco, we suggest to hire a pedalo, or if you have a paddle board take it and paddle to Capo Bianco beach from here. It is no more than 45 min there and back. The parking situation at Capo Bianco is terrible.
How to get to Prunini Beach
Take the provincial road from Portoferraio direction Enfola. The road is smaller than the main road and there are not many lay-bys. Once on the Enfola road after approximately 1.5 km look out for the signs on your right saying Spiaggia Prunini – or you may also see one sign “Spiaggia Seccione” which is another name for this beach.
There are some parking places right at the steps to reach the beach, but not many. Your other alternative is to park along the road edge without your vehicle crossing the white line.
Location: Near Portoferraio- North Elba
Beach type: Whitish Pebbles, smallish size
Beach Size: 150m long 5-7 metres wide
Facilities: small refreshment shop, sun umbrellas and pedalo rental
Parking: Limited spaces along the top road
Sunset: At the far end you can see the sun setting in the water during the summer months.
Enfola Beach – Enfola National Park – North Elba
If you can get parked at the paying car park at Enfola, then this will be a beach with easy access. The grey pebble beach starts only a few metres from your car . You actually have two beaches at Enfola, a rocky one to the east used by the fishermen, and the pebbled one on the south side. Both are only metres apart, separated from each other by the car park.
This beach is a perfect place to cool down after hiking the Capo D’Enfola trail.
The water is super clear due to its many rocks on both sides, and there were a few fish to see whilst snorkelling.
To the kids delight there is a concrete jetty from where they jumped into the azure water of Elba.
A well established and great Elba restaurant right at the beach serves Mediterranean food and refreshments. The adjacent Enfola campsite also has a diving school right on on the beach. Many yachts and boats shelter in the bay of Enfola, so if you are a boat loving person, why not hop on your paddle board and paddle around the yachts.
Hidden BEACH TIP: If you do have a paddle board or you can rent a pedalo on site, head out to the left and follow the cliff. Not long after you will spot a small beach, maybe 30m long.
This beach has access from the top road as well. Shortly before arriving at Enfola beach, you may see one or two cars parked in a small lay-by on your left, still well above the water level. This would be the entry to the path down to this small no-name beach 🙂
How to get to Enfola Beach
From Portoferraio take the beach road direction Enfola – Viticcio. You will then get to the junction where the road heads right down to Enfola. The road ends at Enfola car park so there is no way that you can get lost finding Enfola beach.
Location: Capo d’Enfola – Near Portoferraio
Beach type: Grey Pebbles, smallish size
Beach Size: 150m long 10-15metres wide
Facilities: Great Restaurant, dive shop, umbrellas and pedalo rental
Parking: Payable small parking lot right at the beach. Otherwise along the road.
Sunset: You will not be able to see the sunset from the beach. But you could do the hiking trail on Cap d’Enfola. You can walk to the other side of the Cap and have uninterrupted views for the sunset.
Paolina Beach on Elba – near Marina Marciana – North Elba
As you know we’re mountain loving people and a beach is seldom in our day to day life. Therefore, on the rare occasion when we do find ourselves on a beach we must be sure it is a nice one. And Paolina beach most certainly is.
You will find a small beach with crystal clear water, half sand – half pebbles surrounded by nature and the tranquility that you need on holiday.
A small island just in front of the beach gives it a pretty special feel. You can actually walk over to the island on the left-hand side as the water is quite shallow there.
Together with the beach bar there is a small setup with umbreallas and sunbeds, but to the left and right of the establishment is a free public beach where your coloured parasol is welcome.
But before you can unpack you need to go down 76 wooden steps (yes, I counted them) in the oak tree forest that remains behind the beach. Like most beaches, access is free of charge.
We found there were more fish to be seen whilst snorkeling than on other beaches. In general, the whole beach had a very nice feel to it.
Beach FACT: The name Paolina is given because Maria Paola Bonaparte, Napoleon’s sister, loved sunbathing naked on the rocks at Paolina beach
How to get to Paolina Beach
Access to the beach is located about 2 km from Procchio, in the direction of Marciana Marina, indicated by some signs. Unfortunately, there is only street parking and cars must be left outside the markings on the provincial road.
Apparently during the summer season, you can take “Marebus” to Marciana departing from Procchio. Just ask the driver to stop at Paolina Beach.
Location: Municipale Marciana – Near Marciana Marina
Beach type: Pebbles and sand mix, smallish size
Beach Size: 100m long 5-7 metres wide
Facilities: Small snack bar, possible to hire sun umbrellas, sunbeds
Parking: Unfortunately, there is only street parking and cars must be left outside of the markings on the provincial road.
Sunset: This is not a sunset beach. In fact, the left-hand side part of the beach starts to be in the shade as of the mid-afternoon.
Sant’Andrea Beach – Capo S. Andrea – West Elba
The area has more resorts/hotels right on site compared to other beaches, but it is still pleasantly small with all you would need in a holiday resort. Shops, café’s, restaurants, etc. Certainly, a place you would not need to move for some days.
There is a sandy beach which part belongs to the hotels, but you can also pop up your parasol on the far side of the beach.
A walkway takes you away from the crowd onto very large rocks. It looks pretty, but there is absolutely no shade and not sure how to fix your umbrella on these rocks. Also, they do not look super comfortable to lay on, even though people do. 🙂 Maybe a good idea to bring a beach mattress.
Another thing if you are on these rocks it is very difficult to access the water as it is exposed to the open sea and therefore large waves/swells.
Not ideal for families.
If you do prefer rocks over sand, you can put your towels down on the rocks by the walkway. The water looked super clear and we even saw some marine life from the path. This might be a great alternative for you as the water access is easier.
How to get to Sant’Andrea Beach
From Marciana or Marina di Campo it is easy to get there, just follow the western ring road around Monte Capanne until you get to the junction (it is clearly signposted) for Sant’Andrea then head down towards the beach.
You will see a car park on your left about 100 metres before the actual beach with 20 or so parking spaces, there is a further payable parking lot should the this be full.
On the board was written: 50 cents per hour from May 1st to May 31st, 1 euro per hour from September 16th to October 15th.
During the summer months Sant’Andrea beach can also be reached by the shuttle service of the Marebus.
Location: Municiaple Marciana – Capo S. Andrea
Beach type: Sand on the main part & big rocks on the 2nd part
Beach Size: 150m long 10 metres wide
Facilities: Different restaurant and snack bars around the beach. Possibility to hire sun umbrellas, sunbeds and other water equipment.
Parking: There are both payable and free carparks.
Sunset: Certainly if you are on the Capo Sant’Andrea side you will see the sunset beautifully sink into the sea.
Polombaia Beach on Elba, Or the beach with 100 Steps
Actually, the more correct name would be the beach with 226 steps and more.
It is a wide beach and also quite long compared to others we have visited. Its 300-metre-long stretch consists of pebbles mixed with sand. The family loved it and the crystal-clear water and the nearby cliffs make the entire area perfect for snorkeling lovers.
A snack bar with music serves refreshments and as usual you can rent kayaks, sun umbrellas and sunbeds as well.
How to get to Polombaia Beach on Elba?
When you are driving from Marina di Campo, just follow the western ring road in the direction of Cavoli. When you get to the junction to Monte Perone, go straight and the entry to the many steps and the beach is 30 metres or so on your left next to the deserted Camping White Elephant.
At the road junction you will see a gravel area on your right. This parking place extends a bit further along the road to Monte Perone. You can park your car there and then just cross over the road. There are a few places along the road before the steps but they are pretty narrow and in the bushes.
Location: In the Marina Nell Campo Municipale close to Cavoli
Beach type: Pebbles mixed with sand
Beach Size: About 300m long and 30m wide
Facilities: Beach bar with the usual rental options
Parking: Gravel place available free of charge but fills up quickly
Sunset: This is not a sunset beach, you are looking at the island of Monte Cristo.
Le Piscine on Elba
Attention, part of this beach is a Naturist (nude) beach. I am actually not sure if the whole stretch is, but for sure the right hand side when you walk down the steep gravel path is loved by those who love to be naked. We only discovered it when we arrived 🙂
But after checking out the left side (facing the sea) we saw more families and all were dressed. This is why I am assuming that the nudists are on the right side.
The reason why we found this beach super cool was the different pool formations within the large slabs and the fact that we could jump in to the sea from the rocks.
It is perfect for families with smaller kids as they can safely paddle around in the pools. The two areas are quite large and there should be space on the large rock slabs to put your towel down.
There are NO facilities nor can you rent sun umbrellas here. It is simply a beautiful place to swim.
How to get to Le Piscine on Elba
On the western ring road drive past Cavoli and Seccheto. Right after Seccheto is the parking place for Le Piscine. If this one is full drive a bit further to the viewpoint which also has parking places available.
At the 1st parking lot there is a path going down at the left side of the car park. Just be careful as it is a bit gravelly and small rocks are rolling down. When you get to the large rocks head left for the NON nudist place. But this is no guarantee.
Location: In the Marina Nell Campo Municipal between Cavoli and Fetovaia
Beach type: Large flat Rocks with Pools
Beach Size: Two areas of about 100m long each
Facilities: This beach has no facilities
Parking: At the top of the road on a dedicated parking lot free of charge or along the road.
Sunset: You will not be able to see the sunset from this beach
Relitto Beach on Elba – The Elviscot Shipwreck
The Relitto Beach is without doubt one of our top 3 beaches on Elba.
Just as the name says, the famous shipwreck of Elviscot lies at a depth of between 5-12 metres in front of the Ogliera Rock, approximately 150 metres from the beach. And this is why this place is so perfect for snorkelling.
You can easily reach the wreck either by peddalo, paddle board or you can even swim out.
We all hopped on the paddle board and spent a good hour above the wreck. In the crystal-clear water between the beach and the wreck the scene that opens out before your eyes is unique and you can see numerous fish.
How to get to Relitto beach on Elba?
Again, drive along the western ring road until Pomonte. There are actually three beaches in this village. When you drive down the narrow road, opposite the church you need to head to the left and over the bridge.
You will find paying parking places right at the beach. Yes this is a win, which means no lugging your beach equipment down 200 steps! But the parking is not that cheap, I believe here it was 2-euros for one hour.
Should this place be full you can find a further two pay carparks further up before the main road and one carpark at the top of the village.
There is even parking just before reaching the village of Pomonte at the side of the main road. You would then access the beach by a steep path that guides you from the road to the beach.
Location: In the Marina Nell Campo Municipal on West Elba
Beach type: Pebbles with shingle mix
Beach Size: There are 2 pay beach areas and the furthest part is free for everyone. The whole area probably about 150m long but only 10m wide.
Facilities: At the 1st paying area you can rent 2 sunbeds and an umbrella, a fresh water shower and toilet are available for customer use. There is a snack bar just behind the beach.
Parking: Several different options. Mostly paying
Sunset: Amazing place to witness the sunset
Patresi Beach – Municipal Marciana – West Elba
We found all beaches on the western ring road quieter than on the south side. And this applies to Patresi beach.
We loved this one as it has a concrete dock from where the kids could jump in, and the whole surrounding area was pretty. We felt like being away from it all. There is a large lighthouse overlooking the whole area, although it is not possible to visit. Or at least we could not find the entrance 🙂
It is not the most comfortable beach if you do not get a sun bed, but as we’re in the water most of the time it didn’t really bother us.
The 1st part is a concrete slab, I guess you could stay here but if you do not pay for the umbrella stand you will have no shade. The second part is medium/large granite pebbles. Mostly smooth but they are large. You can find some flat large rocks but they were all taken by the time we arrived.
At the far end of the beach you can find a small section with normal sized pebbles. The whole beach stretches over 150m but is only about 10 metres wide.
We loved the snorkelling here. The sea bed was richer than at other beaches and more species of fish, shellfish and marine flora can be seen, so it is perfect for snorkelling.
You will find a nice beach restaurant with facilities, and there are payable dedicated parking places along the approach road.
How to get to Patresi Beach on Elba
Patresi beach is on the most westerly point on Elba along the western ring road in the Marciana Municipal. When you have reached the Patresi Village drive down the Mare (sea) road towards the lighthouse and further to the beach. You will find dedicated parking along the road by the beach.
Location: Marciana Municipal western Elba
Beach type: Medium/large granite pebbles.
Beach Size: 150m Long and 10m wide
Facilities: Beach bar and toilets
Parking: Payable along the road
Sunset: Yes, at least I guess so. We have not stayed until sunset but the position is perfect for a marvellous sunset.
Innamorata Beach & Hidden Gem – Capoliveri Southeast Elba
This side of Elba we felt was busier than the Marciana area on the north-west side. And the beaches were also more packed with holiday makers. However, there is a chance to escape the crowd at the Innamorata beach.
You can stay at the main sand and shingle beach where all the facilities and restaurants are. The cliffs are beautiful, the water is more or less calm. The beach is quite long, around 290 metres, and almost 30 metres wide. Therefore, plenty of space of everyone.
If you are like us and prefer a quiet small Robinson Crusoe beach then you can get to one from here on foot.
Follow the path on the photo below. It is not long and you can easily carry your beach equipment with you. The path brings you to a deserted tiny beach from where you can reach the Gemini islands easily and the snorkelling is absolutely perfect.
There are no facilities at this place.
If you would rather stay on the main Innamorata beach you can do so and swim or come around on your paddle board. Along the way if the water swell is not too great you could check out some caves.
You will find a payable parking lot right at the beach front although it is small and you have to be in luck to find a place. Further up a dedicated gravel road is a larger parking area, also payable. It is quite expensive, 3 euro for the 1st hour and 1.50 euro every hour thereafter .
You will not see the sunset into the sea from Innamorata Beach but you can see the sun descend over the mountains of Elba.
Location: Innamorata – Capoliveri – South-East Elba
Beach type: Mostly sand and shingle (pebbles on the hidden beach)
Beach Size: 290m Long and 30m wide
Facilities: Beach Restaurants, toilets and rental possibilities
Parking: Paid Parking lot
Sunset: Not into the sea
Nisporto Beach – Portoferraio – Northwest Elba
When we hiked to the Tonietti Mausoleum Tower from Cavo, we decided that afterwards we would check out one of the beaches in the north and we came to Nisporto because we figured that we might see the sunset from here (you don’t by the way).
The drive over the mountains to the beach makes it well worth the visit. This beach has quite large waves which the kids loved jumping in and playing around, but we needed to always have one eye on them.
So, if you have older kids, for sure a great beach to play in the waves. This was the first beach we also saw some windsurfers trying their luck.
On the photo below you can see the Nisporto (left) and the Nisportino beach on the right. Nisporto is a bit more sheltered.
The beach is nestled in a horseshoe bay and is about 220 metres long and up to 20 metres wide in some parts. It consists of different coloured pebbles (nice ones) mixed with shingle and sand.
Even though the beach seems quite far away from it all, you will find a large campground nearby with facilities and restaurants on that beach. Two free of charge parking lots are at your disposal .
Because the beach is nestled inside a horseshoe bay you will not be able to see the sunset. But when you drive home stop at the top on Mount Strega and enjoy a magical sunset with views over Portoferraio and beyond.
How to get to Nisporto Beach in Elba
When you are driving to the north of Elba via Rio nell ‘Elba head for Nisporto. From Portoferraio you could stay on the coast road rather than heading up the mountain route. The mountain road gives you beautiful views over both sides of Elba and there is only one road down to the beach.
Location: Rio Marina Area – North east side of Elba
Beach type: Different coloured pebbles mixed with shingle and sand
Beach Size: 220 metres long and up to 20 metres wide
Facilities: Beach Restaurants, toilets and rental possibilities
Parking: Parking at the beach
Sunset: No sunset beach
To see all Beaches on Elba and how to get there you can download the Elba Beach App.
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So, I hope you enjoyed reading our Best Beaches on Elba Italy, and are planning your next trip to Tuscany soon.
If I have left anything out, please ask your questions in the comments below and share your experience, so that other readers can join in the conversation and benefit from your queries and stories as well
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