The western ring of Elba is the coast road that goes from Procchio to Marina di Campo; it can be covered by car, motorbike or bicycle and since it is an unforgettable itinerary, then you have to experience it at least once in your lifetime. Along a track of approximately 50 km, you will have the opportunity to discover dream inlets, little villages perched in the heart of the mountains, stunning landscapes and cliffs overhanging the sea, incredibly blue and clear up to the outline of Corsica and beyond... Be honest: you can't wait to leave the mainland, right? If the answer is yes, then all you have to do is contact one of the three ferry companies (Moby Lines, Toremar and Blu Navy) that provide ferry services between Piombino and Portoferraio and make your reservation; if you've got only one day try to leave very early in the morning, if you have the possibility to spend more time away from home, then take the whole week-end, leave on a Friday afternoon and come back on a Sunday.
Once you've landed in Portoferraio (the crossing takes approximately 1 hour) you have to drive about 10 km to reach Procchio; just 2 km west of the gulf you will encounter the bathing island of Paolina, named this way because the story says that Paolina Bonaparte used to love to come here and bathe naked, away from prying eyes. Continuing along SP25 you will get to Marciana Marina, at the feet of a bowl covered with vineyards, oaks and chestnut trees; in the centre of the marine village stands the historic Rione Cotone, a fishing village famous for its pastel-coloured houses, impregnated with a very particular atmosphere. At this point, the road starts to go up-hill and after 5 km you will arrive in Poggio, an ancient mountain village with small granite-paved streets; the square with scenic view over the sea is very beautiful and there is also a lovely little church called Chiesa di S. Niccolò located at the top of the village centre. And if you appreciate Poggio you'll fall in love with Marciana (located about 3 km north-west of Poggio) one of the most ancient and interesting centres of the entire Island: here you can visit a Pisan Fortress and a series of religious buildings, take the cableway to the top of Monte Capanne (1019 m) or simply walk through the gorgeous alleys and enjoy the view of the Tuscan archipelago, the Tuscan mountains and the Isle of Corsica.
Proceed in the direction of La Zanca and turn off the main road to reach S. Andrea, a very beautiful seaside place famous for some natural granite slabs delimiting two beaches of ochre sand; here you can jump into amazingly limpid waters in search of fishes, octopuses, sea stars and sea urchins... Admire the Capraia Island and Cap Corse which give the impression of being reachable in a twinkling! Now go back to the main road and follow it in the direction of Chiessi, once you have passed Colle d'Orano the road becomes amazing, little by little the panorama starts turning into the perfect imitation of a lunar landscape... Once you reach Pomonte you will start to get a glimpse of the unmistakable outline of Pianosa; about 150 meters below the village, in front of the Quartiere beach, you can see the Scoglio dell'Ogliera instead, where - at a depth of 9 meters - lays the relict of the Elviscott cargo, wrecked on January 10th, 1972, housing today numerous species of fishes.
From Pomonte you can reach Fetovaia and Cavoli as well, probably the most beautiful beaches on the Island but for the same reason also the most crowded in Summer... If you enjoy being at sea alone, we recommend you look for Le Tombe instead, that in spite of the disquieting name – due to the presence of some Etruscan burials in the vicinity – are enlisted among the most wild and evocative black cobblestone beaches of Elba. Le Tombe are located about 2 km south of Pomonte, right at the 16th km of SP25, in order to get there you will need to walk down hill for at least 10 minutes, surrounded by lavender plants, rosemary, cistuses and mediterranean scrub (make sure you take plenty of water with you 'cause you will need it!).
Well, here we are at the end of this wonderful itinerary, our last stop is Marina di Campo, dominated by the ancient coastal tower erected by the Pisans in the 12th century, to protect the coast from the pirate incursions. Thanks to its spectacular sandy beach - more than 1500 meters long - Marina di Campo is probably the main tourist resort of the Island; here you can visit the little harbour and the old village, have dinner in one of the many restaurants of the promenade, admire one of the most complete mediterranean aquariums in Italy and go shopping to the many stylish boutiques situated on the main road.