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colourful houses located next to the sea on an italian island

Italian islands hold beauty and wonder for those who step foot upon their shores. They can be a stone’s throw away from the mainland or tucked away out of view, either way once you experience the relaxing beauty hidden in these islands you may never want to leave. Our guide brings you six hidden Italian islands that you may never have heard about, but need to know for your next European trip. We also cover the four main islands which have grown in popularity over the past century. Get ready to pack your suitcase, because once you see what these italian islands have to offer you will be wanting to book your next flight ASAP!

Table of Contents:

6 Hidden Italian Islands You May Not Have Heard About

  1. Ponza 
  2. Giglio Island
  3. Procida
  4. Stromboli
  5. Pantelleria
  6. Termiti

Ponza

With its clear turquoise waters, and sense of mystery, one of Italy’s most under the radar islands is the island of Ponza. Its dreamy landscape captivates your attention and leaves you wanting to know more about the unique history on offer. On your first arrival you will feel like you have stepped into a glorious retro location, where you can spend your summer soaking up the sun. You can find this hidden island in the Tyrrhenian sea, roughly between Naples and Rome. The calming atmosphere of this Italian island is what draws those who know about it in. You can spend your days climbing the mountains or rent a boat from the main harbour and explore the clear waters. Whatever you find relaxing, the Italian island of Ponza will be perfect for you.     

How to get there:

  • From Rome you can take a train from the Roma Termini station to the Anzio Colonia station. From there you need to take a short walk to the Anzio port where you can hop on a ferry to Ponza.
  • From Naples you can catch a direct ferry that leaves from Naples port. It only operates a few times a week so be sure to arrive in time!  
a cliff rocks view overlooking the sights in the amalfi coast

Giglio Island

If you are after a quiet retreat, the Italian island of Giglio can satisfy your search. The island itself is just over nine square miles, and is said to be the second largest of the Tuscan Archipelago. Legend has it these seven islands were formed by the scattering of the Italian goddess Venus’s pearl necklace. It makes for a romantic anecdote to your trip, especially if you are visiting on a couples Italian holiday. The island has little in the way of gamourious shopping, Michelin-starred restaurants or partying atmosphere, but what it can offer is hidden coves, crystalline sea views and beautiful hiking trails. Located just off the coast of Tuscany, you can reach this Italian island by boat in just one hour!       

How to get there: 

  • By train – Taking approximately two hours, you can catch a train to Giglio island from Orbetello Monte Argentario.
  • By ferry – You can arrive at Giglio islands in one hour by ferry. Head to the harbour Porto Santo Stefano which operates ferries in any weather, all year round.  
looking up at colourful houses on the side of a mountain in italy

Procida

The Italian island of Procida, has recently been named Italy’s Capital of Culture for 2022. Located in the bay of Naples, this tiny Italian island is the first island to ever be granted this title! It just goes to show the beauty and history these unique locations have to offer when choosing your next holiday destination

When you step foot onto the island of Procida you can admire the pastel houses and narrow streets, which almost make you feel like you’re in one of the larger islands. The Italian island has stayed out of tourists’ viewfinder for many years, even though it has been a popular location for many big-screen moments. We are sure you will fall in love with this culture-rich destination as soon as your feet touch the sandy shores!      

How to get there: 

  • From Naples you can take a hydrofoil from Molo Beverello, which takes about forty minutes. You can also take a ferry from Porta di Massa in Naples which will take you one hour to reach Procida.
colourful houses located on an Italian cliff edge next to the sea

Stromboli

Stromboli gained the nickname “lighthouse of the Mediterranean” as it is one of seven volcanic islands to make up the Aeolian archipelago. Located just off Sicily’s northern coast, this Italian island currently holds the top spot as the world’s most active volcanoes. You can trek to the summit or take boat rides at night to watch the larva firework show. But this holiday destination can offer more than just a fiery viewpoint. Tourists who know about this location flock to the shore for its dark black sandy beaches too.   

How to get there:

  • From Naples you can reach Stromboli by hydrofoil or boat. In high seasons, the hydrofoil runs twice a day, so you have multiple chances of reaching the island.
colourful houses located on one of italy’s shorelines

Pantelleria

Caught between the coast of Sicily and Tunisia, the Italian island of Pantelleria has become one of Europe’s most intriguing islands. Its history is long and rich which has seen it change ownership of religions throughout the years, but this Italian island offers more than meets the eye. What you can find tucked away is a beautiful heart shaped lake known as the Mirror of Venus. This lake is a natural thermal spring that reaches temperatures of 50-60 degrees celsius. Surrounding the outeredge is green leafage which from a far makes the water’s appearance darker. You can also stumble upon numerous hot springs and natural saunas if they take your fancy. One thing you have to try from this Italian island is the Zibibbo di Pantelleria wine, otherwise known as Bianco di Patelleria. Made from zibibbo grapes, it is the perfect white wine for those with a sweet tooth!    

How to get there: 

  • By plane – During summer you can get direct flights from Milan, Rome and other italian cities to the island of Pantelleria. Pantelleria airport also receives daily flights from Palermo and Trapani.
  • By boat – All year round you can access the island by overnight ferries from Trapani. Alternatively, during the summer months there is a hydrofoil which runs daily and only takes two hours!
aerial view of rustic buildings sitting in a harbour of one of italy’s islands

Termiti

If you want to avoid large crowds on your summer vacation, but still want a gorgeous location, the Italian Termiti islands are for you. Known as the only archipelago in the Adriatic Sea, these Italian islands are known for their crystal clear waters and mild climate. These Italian islands are perfect for visiting during the day as you can swim, then wine and dine in one of the few restaurants. The islands are small (measuring only 2.6km) but they are different to your usual Italian mainland. It’s for this reason many choose it as a mini break away for the day.  

How to get there: 

  • By plane – You can reach the island by catching flights from Foggia and Vieste to the San domino Heliport.
  • By ferry – You can take ferries from Termoli or Vieste to reach the island of Termiti. From Vieste you can expect the journey to take about two hours.

Planning Your Next Adventure

Experiencing the beauty and culture of hidden islands can be both romantic and exciting. Whether you are travelling solo on a worldwide backpacking adventure or escaping as a family to unfamiliar territory. Uncovering new locations is a great way to sample other countries’ heritage without large tourist crowds. If we have inspired you to take your next adventure to one of the hidden Italian islands, be sure to let us know your thoughts! 

Ash

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