As the sweltering Italian summer continues to heat up, locals and tourists alike flock to beaches around the country in search of sunshine solace. Soon these peaceful weekends away will turn into long vacations throughout the month of August, when many families depart from their central city life for one of dazzling shorelines, exquisite seafood and rich ocean air. The country boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in the world; so what better a time to "live like a local" and embark upon your own seaside getaway? Here is our top 10 picks.
It's almost impossible to choose from the myriad of magical beaches in Puglia, but the Pescoluse (dubbed the "Maldives of Puglia") arguably wins the title as the Southern region's most premier beach destination. With a 5km stretch of fresh white sand, breathtaking azure waves and divine weather, this heavenly sight is one of pure tranquillity. The stunning shoreline is perfect for romantic walks at sunrise or sunset, or for those seeking their fitness kick, jogs with an epic view.
San Vito Lo Capo, Northern Sicily
If you're craving long sandy shorelines and a bustling community, then the North of Sicily might be more to your taste. Take a trip to San Vito Lo Capo for its vibrant blue waters and crescentshaped golden sand beach. This aweinspiring location is set against the impressive back drop of Monte Monaco in a charming coastal town that you're sure to fall in love with. It's a huge hit with climbers as well, so expect to meet a fair amount of adrenaline junkies on your trip!
Spiaggia Rosa, Budelli, Northern Sardinia
The Spiaggia Rosa (or the Pink Beach) is perhaps one of the most unique in Italy. Located in the southern part of the Budelli Island, this exquisite pearl of Sardinia is a protected natural paradise, coloured a soft pink by microscopic fragments of corals and shells. Visitors will find themselves enthralled by the rainbow of shimmering colours of this stunning beach, where the pink shore meets the green of the Junipers and the crystal blue of the emerald sea. These days the beach is accessible by sea and only if accompanied by the Park's Guides: but believe us, it's worth the hassle.
Cala Mosche, Southern Sicily
The 1,000kms of coastline in Sicily really do offer something for everyone. If you're in search of something wild and untouched, head down to the South for the many unspoilt beaches and nature reserves. Our favourite is Cala Mosche, a little known beach in the South East of the region. Set within the Vendican Nature Reserve, you'll struggle to find a sun lounger, bar or gelato seller in this secret spot. Untarnished surroundings hidden a 15 minute walk through the reserve makes this authentic beach a feast for the eyes. It's been voted one of of the most beautiful in Italy – just one look and you'll understand why.
Spiaggia di Tuerredda, Southern Sardinia
Sardinia is bursting with glistening beaches: so much so, it has to be mentioned twice! This renowned local beach is adored for its Caribbean style white sand and its transparent ocean waves... true postcard material! It is seen as one of the most beautiful beaches in Sardinia, with a vast and beautiful landscape that needs to be seen to be believed. Spend your day sprawled out on the warm sand before taking a tip in the cool rippling water; if you're so inclined, you can also rent a pedal boat to explore the sea in style!
Marina Grande, Island of Capri
In Italy's Gulf of Naples, you will find the glorious island of Capri. Here the Marina Grande provides a gorgeous, sprawling beach with slim gorges and rocky inlets. The pebbled beach is breathtaking and the ideal place to let your hair down and truly relax. This quirky marina town also gives quick access to some of the world's most mesmerising sights, such as the Blue Grotto of Capri.
Spiaggia Grande, Positano
Picturesque and bustling, the Spiaggia Grande is the hub of town life in Positano. Perfect postcard material, this enchanting beach is perhaps the most vibrant on the Amalfi Coast, with regular and exciting entertainment along the lively pier creating a charming atmosphere day to day. Visit for the rolling crystal waves, stay for the mouthwatering seafood and unmissable social life.
Based in the province of Livorno, Castliglioncello has the best of both worlds: fresh and natural forest like parks and glamorous, shimmering beaches. A sophisticated town, it has become known as the hotspot for the rich and famous, with stars such as Marcello Mastroianni (of La Dolce Vita) summering here in the 60s. On first visit, you can see why. Stretches of white beaches, reefs carved from the wind and reams of Mediterranean trees make you feel like you have stepped onto a movie set. Combine that with the impeccable and brightly coloured houses cascading down flower covered mountainsides and you know you've hit the jackpot.
Monterosso, Cinque Terre
It's a place of simplicity and serenity: come and enjoy the blissful atmosphere of Mosterosso in Cinque Terre. The only sand covered beach in the area, this long stretch is dotted with ranks of colourful beach chairs and lined with sparkling green waves gently tumbling across the shoreline boulders. The town itself hosts a diverse atmosphere of hikers, those seeking natural landscapes and curious types exploring the colourful village streets and houses that have now become famous around the world. All come together to experience a place of peace down on the sand where a soft breeze makes even the hottest of climates more than pleasant.
Spiaggia Giamaica, Lombardy
The region of worldrenowned lakes, the dolomites and gorgeous green valleys, Lombardy is much loved for treks, relaxing days in the sun and dips in the water. Be sure to visit Spiaggia Giamiaca (on Lake Garda) for a beach experience with a difference. Here large slabs of rock have formed a beautiful, white rock beach surrounded by some of the clearest waters you will ever see. Soak up the 360 degree views of grandeur and, if the lake level is low enough, walk around to the Lido delle Bionde, a beach with a bustling pier, bar and lawn shaded by delicious olive trees.