Italian coast boasts with many splendid tourist resorts which offer pleasure vacation, entertainment and various sport activities; all in constant tendency of improvement in order to match the demands of visitors still with the main objective to preserve nature and to prevent any damage to the marine ecosystem.
Some of the Italian archipelagos and small islands have turned into protected marine areas. However, there is a tendency to allow pleasure boaters to use the system of protected marine areas by installing buoys they can tie up to or by providing other services.
Still, there are numerous interesting places one can choose as his starting base to discover many natural resources of this country, splendid beaches, old towns along the coast, lavishly equipped marinas...Whatever place you choose, you will be amazed by its beauty and variety of choices; providing all the facilities to the visitors.
Yachting facilities in Italy are of a very high standard due to a large resident boating population and considerable boat-building industry.
HERE ARE THE MOST INTERESTING STARTING BASES IN ITALY:
Sicily and Aeolian islands
Sicily is well known for its unique natural beauty, Etna's volcano, its splendid coast, islands and islets.
One can start his journey in Palermo in the north of the island, a city with numerous monuments and dense orchards. The city has preserved some of Arabic and Norman atmosphere. Another base to start your journey could be Marsala, an astonishing town founded by the Cartaginians. It's a pleasant picturesque place, famous for its wine. Sant'Agata di Militello is located somewhere in between Palermo and Messina. It's an ideal starting point for cruising the Aeolian islands.
The landscape of Sardinia offers a lifetime vacation of its rich environment. Portisco is located between Porto Cervo and Porto Rotondo. The place is ideal for sailing tourism and it offers various services for tourists. Besides, it is only 10 minutes away from the airport. Carloforte is another starting base, as interesting as well. It is the only populated area on the island of San Pietro.
The west coast of Italy is well known for its splendid islands and bases which offer all the facilities to the visitors. Etrusca Marina in Scarlino is an excellent location in the south of Piombino. The island of Elba is another great location for your sailing vacation, offering numerous ports and anchorages. It is one of the most attractive and colorful islands in Italy with following starting bases: Portoferraio, Rio Marina and Marina Marciana.
Gulf of Naples
Naples is an astonishing city which offers numerous monuments and museums of historical interest. It is the great starting base to a journey towards the nearby islands. Agropoli is located between Capo Campanella (Sorrento) and Capo Palinuro. The ruins of its castle reminds us of its Byzantine origin, then some examples of the Greek architecture ( Porta Rosa ) etc. It is an ideal starting base towards the islands of the gulf ( Capri, Ischia and Procida ), along the coast of Cilento or even further to explore the Pontine islands. Vibo Valentia Marina, which is only a few km away from the airport, could be a great choice for those who would like to visit the islands of Lipari.
Monte Argentario is among the most interesting spots in Tuscan Riviera with attractive tourist centers, beautiful nature and extraordinary sea depths for diving activities. There are three ports to start your journey from; Santo Stefano, Ercole and Marina di Cala Galera.
Castellamare di Stabia is located between Naples and Sorrento. Besides being an excellent starting base towards the nearby islands ( Ischia, Procida and Capri ), there are 28 mineral springs, so one can enjoy in a mineral-water cure both in the Antique thermae and the new one as well.
Formia is a picturesque town with mild climate which makes it a great base for those who intend to explore the beauty of the Pontine islands.
Genoa is a city of contrasts, both in culture and architecture, a real modern metropolis. However, it is the only place with colorful and exotic atmosphere of the old port. From there, you can explore the coast towards the tourist center of Ventimiglia, or in another direction, towards Cinque Terre.
Marsala has an excellent position which makes it an ideal starting base towards the Egadi islands (Favignana, Levanzo and Marettimo).
Nettuno is another suggestion as a starting point. Just like Formia, it is ideal for sailing towards the Pontine islands.
Palau is an important tourist center with magnificent panorama to the archipelago of Maddalena. It stands out with its granite cliff (Il Capo d'Orso) and provides a sailing route through the archipelago.
Procida is a volcanic island with only 4 km of length, steep coast, green orchards and vineyards. A nice starting base to explore the Gulf of Naples and its surroundings.
Punta Ala, once a name of a rocky promontory, is now a synonym of a tourist center and luxury residence with a vivacious tourist port from where you can start your journey towards nearby islands.
Salerno is an antique town sloping down from the hill towards the sea. It's an excellent choice for those who would like to stay around the Gulf of Naples or even for those who would like to set towards the Aeolian islands.
San Felice Circeo is another famous starting base with an extraordinary panorama of the Pontine islands. Along with Formia and Nettuno, it offers a great vacation cruising the islands.
San Remo is an important tourist center. The first hotel in this town was called London, due to wealthy British tourists who were attracted by its mild climate and its romantic landscape. It was the beginning of its great development, construction of hotels, villas, parks and gardens. The city was transformed to the most important flower market in Italy.
Syracuse was once the most powerful city of Sicily. Today, it offers splendid landscape, crystal sea and Mediterranean vegetation. An excellent starting base indeed.
Trapani, a great choice to start your cruising vacation towards the Egadi islands.
Viareggio was once a marine shelter. There are various small ports in the area, gardens of palms, oleander and tamarisk, sandy beach, elegant hotels, various cultural events etc.
Vieste is located on the east side of the Gargano peninsula. It's a picturesque place with its old part of a medieval atmosphere on a rocky promontory isolated between two long sandy beaches.