There’s a definite chill in the air, but planning a summer escape is one way to banish the frosty strains of winter from your mind. Just imagine dipping your toes into the sparkling turquoise of the Med, or soaking up the rays while reclining on a warm beach. Bellissimo!
Italy plays host to some of Europe’s most beautiful coastlines, from sandy shores to rocky inlets and sleepy fishing villages waiting to be discovered. Here, House of Coco has teamed up with Christina Baechle of Sicily4u to showcase her top tips for sunseekers.
1. Rabbit Beach, Lampedusa (above)
With crystal clear waters and a beautiful stretch of sand, Rabbit Beach, located on the Sicilian island of Lampedusa, is a holidaymaker’s paradise. Thriving marine life makes it a great destination for snorkelers, and it was voted the world’s best beach by TripAdvisor in 2013.
The water stays warm until November, when temperatures range from 20-23C. The highest temperatures are recorded in August, typically 27-28C.
2. Cala Mariolu, Sardinia
Popular for its rock climbing routes, Cala Mariolu is a secret hideaway perfect for those seeking some adventure. You can get access to the beach by foot or by boat and its white sand and pebbled shoreline gives the water a pool-like effect, making it some of the clearest and brightest you will ever see.
The hottest month in Cala Mariolu is August when the average temperature is 30C.
3. Cefalu, Sicily
Boasting gorgeous long sandy beaches and a historic town to explore, Cefalu has something for everyone. When you’ve had enough of the beach, you can take a stroll through the harbour or discover the medieval districts and see the sights of the town’s Duomo, a striking two-towered Norman cathedral that dominates the rooftops of the centro storico.
The hottest month in Cefalu is August, with temperatures peaking at 28C.
4. Bay of Silence, Sestri Levante
Part of the Italian Riviera, the Bay of Silence is one of Italy’s most picturesque spots. With sunsets that rebound off the buildings and alight into magnificent feasts of colour, it’s easy to see why it’s home to so many artists. Part of the cute little fishing village, Sestri Levante, in the Provincia di Genoa, the Bay of Silence has stunning white sandy beaches and is a great base for visiting the nearby and very pretty town of Portofino.
The average temperatures from May-September peak at 28C.
5. Porto Giunco, Sardinia
The beach of Porto Giunco has fine white sand and waters of the softest blue. Its clear waters and windy climate make it perfect for scuba enthusiasts and surfers. It is also home to the nearby Notteri pond, the chosen habitat of the pink flamingos.
With an average of 25C, August is the warmest month.
6. Cala Rossa, Favignana
Set on the Sicilian island of Favignana, famous for its Tuna fisheries, Cala Rossa (Red Cove) gets its name from the red clay on the shoreline. The island is famous for its caves of calcarenite rock (locally known as “tufo”) and its jagged coastline makes it a perfect spot for scuba diving.
Temperatures fluctuate at around 27C during the summer months.
7. Isola Bella, Sicily
Isola Bella (Beautiful Island) was private property until 1990, when it was purchased by the Region of Sicily and transformed into a nature reserve, overseen by the World Wide Fund for Nature. Also known as the Pearl of the Ionian Sea, Isola Bella is often described as paradise by visitors who enjoy swimming the clear blue sea.
The beach is certainly more shingle than sand, but the stunning scenery should make up for having to wear your flip flops. Boat trips around the island start from as little as five euros. Temperatures average 24C in July and August.
Everyone knows that Italy has plenty to offer when it comes to cultural pursuits and cosmopolitan city breaks, but you may be surprised by the beauty of its beaches. Which one takes your fancy? Tell us in the comments below…