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Traveling to Elba: 6 useful tips

As soon as you set foot on the island, la dolce vita embraces you. The friendly Tuscany towns, hilly countryside and fantastic coasts make Elba a true Italian pearl. Elba is located just off the coast of Italy and it is small compared to Sicily and Sardinia. This makes the island perfect for both a short or longer holiday. We give you six useful tips for a great trip to Elba.

Tip 1: Travel to Elba off season

The narrow authentic streets and beautiful bays with white sandy beaches are so much nicer without all those tourists. Avoid the crowds and experience the real Elba in the months of May, June and September. Thanks to the mild climate and generous sun, it is wonderful to stay here during low season. Elba is a popular holiday destination in July and August and therefore a lot busier.

Tip 2: Combine your trip to Elba with a tour of Tuscany

The good thing about Elba is that the ferry crossing is only short. You can sail from Piombino to Cavo in fifteen minutes. So you can easily combine a road trip through Tuscany with a trip to Elba. Book your B&B, drive your car onto the boat and enjoy a few days in Elba.

The boats to Elba all depart from Piombino on mainland Italy. The island has three ports: Porteferraio, Rio Marina and Cavo. View the map with all ferry routes to Elba.

Tip 3: Fly to Pisa

Elba has a tiny airport. Do you want to fly directly to Elba? Take into account longer travel time and a stopover in Florence. It is easier to take the plane to Pisa. Rent a car at the airport of Pisa. From Pisa it’s about an hour and a half drive to Piombino, where you can catch the ferry to Elba.

Tip 4: Take the car on the boat to Elba

Public transport could be better on this Italian island. So do you want to explore Elba? We recommend to have your own car on the island or rent one. The car can simply be taken on the ferry. Keep in mind that it is sometimes difficult to find a parking space at busy attractions on Elba during the summer months.

Tip 5: Reserve the boat

Despite the many departures, it is smart to book the boat to Elba in advance. Especially when you travel to the island during high season. The spaces for cars fill up first and our experience is that ticket prices have increased when you book late.

Tip 6: Take a day trip to Elba

Take the ferry from Piombino to Porteferraio in 45 minutes for a day trip to Elba. The port town of Porteferraio is the largest town on Elba. You don't necessarily need a car for a day trip to Elba. A shuttle bus takes you from the port to the historic center of Porteferraio where you can easily spend a day. For example, visit Napoleon's villa where he stayed during his exile on the island, stroll through the cozy streets and enjoy an Italian pasta on one of the many terraces.

Toremar ferry departing from Elba

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