Orbetello is a picturesque and bustling city that stretches across the shores of the Orbetello Lagoon.
With breathtaking views of the Monte Argentario coast and palm trees everywhere you look, Orbetello is unlike anywhere else in the Maremma.
The locals are relaxed, convinced the lagoon air does them wonders. The pace is dictated by afternoon walks down Corso Italia, the main strip.
Living next to the Orbetello Lagoon is, by the locals, likened to living next to a nature park. It's a birdwatcher's dream and home for between 200 and 450 different bird species.
If you're looking to admire the Orbetello Lagoon, the best time to visit is in the evening, when the rather shy nocturnal animals make an appearance and the incredible sunset makes its way over the water and behind Monte Argentario.
Beyond the lagoon, Orbetello is a city shaped by Etruscan origins and refined by centuries of wealth and prestige. When the Romans left, Orbetello remained an important asset for the powers that came, from the Republic of Siena in the 15th century to the Spanish of the 16th century and the Grand Duchy of Tuscany in the 18th century.
During the almost two centuries of Spanish rule, Orbetello was the capital of the so called Stato dei Presidi - a small Spanish-ruled kingdom that covered most of the Argentario Coast.
The Spanish invested a lot of money into building grand churches, impressive monuments and serious fortifications with a Spanish flair.
Even Corso Italia has a hint of old luxury about it. Either side of the via brushes against richly painted homes and buildings covered in detailed stonework and marble.
Orbetello's shops are some of the most glamorous outside of Grosseto and are made up of fashion boutiques, homeware stores and restaurants.