Castiglione della Pescaia is exactly the sort of tranquil seaside village you’d expect to find on the Tuscan coast.
In winter, Castiglione della Pescaia falls asleep. Few locals remain in town to open the small butcher shop, bakery and supermarket. The atmosphere is comforting, and the peaceful silence broken only by the sounds of farmers working in the far-off countryside.
It’s a beauty that is rarely appreciated by tourists.
But in summer, everything comes alive, literally. You can hardly move in the streets and the roads are always blocked by people strolling down to the port or beach. Tourists flock to soak up the medieval atmosphere in the town centre, where cars are banned. Locals come back home for the summer, and hotels, camp sites and all other types of accommodation are booked out for weeks.
Quite simply, everyone wants to be in Castiglione della Pescaia in the summertime – and they have good reason to.
The town has earned the nickname “Svizzera della Maremma” (Switzerland of the Maremma) not for its organisational skills, but for the quaint aspect of its pastel coloured buildings, which stretch to the feet of the port and are often shadowed by the grand oaks and wild grape vines that wind their way through the streets.
But this isn’t the only reason why Castiglione della Pescaia is loved by local and tourists alike. Under the Tuscan sun, this town is a hub of music and activity. People sit out on the walkway enjoying a meal or snack and watching the boats arrive in the port. Afternoons are spent basking in the beauty of the town’s panorama and surroundings, both of which have earned 5 sails from the Legambiente-Italian Touring Club – a much coveted environmental honour.
And then, of course, there are the beaches. Endless stretches of smooth sand and crystal clear water that are always warm and calm, making them some of the best beaches in Tuscany, that is, if you don’t mind sharing them with thousands of others.