Resource Guide to Traveling and Visiting Tuscany


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Le Cannelle
Giglio view
Giglio Castello
Island of Giglio

The Island of Giglio is the second largest island in the Tuscan archipelago. Its natural beauty makes it a great-tiny paradise. Its Greek name, aegilion, means island of goats and probably comes from its steep, granite cliffs, well suited to mountain goats.

The entire coast line is made of jagged palisades, broken only by the Arenella, Porto and Cannelle coves along the east coast and by the larger beach of Campese to the north east. Its mild climate offers visitors a wonderful stay in any season. The emerald green water and varied sea bed teeming with fish offer the ever more numerous visitors and scuba divers the chance to enjoy the uncontaminated sea.

The island is rich in flora and fauna and the thick Mediterranean scrub is broken by terraces with olive groves and vineyards which produce the excellent white wine, Ansonica. The original settlement was probably Etruscan. From the 3rd century B.C., it fell under Roman domination and became the property of the noble family Domizi Enobardi. In 805 the islands of Giglio and Giannutre were given to the Abbey of the Tre Fontane in Rome by Charlemagne. In 1269 the island passed to the Aldobrandeschi family and then to the powerful Repubblic of Pisa to which it owes the Giglio Castle. It became the property of the Medici and at the beginning of the 15th century suffered terrible raids. The worst of these was lead by the Algerian pirate Redbeard causing the exodus of the entire population. The Medici undertook the task of repopulating the island and protecting it by fortifying Giglio Castle.

The period of greater safety that followed, stimulated an increase of the population and an economic improvement. Today the population is concentrated at Giglio Porto, Giglio Castello and Campese. Giglio Porto is a delightful village lying along a cove closed between two piers and backed by a terraced hill planted in vineyards. From here a narrow, winding road leads up to Giglio Castle, the town seat which has jusidiction over Giannutri as well.

The town has kept its look of a fortified village, surrounded by high Medieval walls complete with towers. It is a maze of tiny streets, covered by arches, dark underground passages, steep steps carved in the rock, and old houses crowded on top of one another with the Castle looming above. Campese is situated on the islandís western coast. It is in the center of a bay bordered by a wide, sandy beach, embellished by the presence of an imposing tower built at the time of Ferdinand I.

Both Giglio and the tiny, wild island of Giannutri are part of the Parco Nationale dellíArchipelago Toscano. This small island is striking for its sheer cliffs dropping off to the crystal-clear sea, the sharp scent of its aromatic herbs and the remains of an ancient patrician Roman villa.


Giannutri Island costitute with Giglio island, Capraia island, Montecristo island, Pianosa island and Gorgona island the parck of Tuscany's archipalago.
Giannutri is about 1 hour and 30 minute of ferry boat from Porto S. Stefano, it's and totally private island, there isn't asphalting street but only path in the nature. The island have a hourseshoe form. The Giannutri Island is rule from the natureT, in spring there is much seagulls that nidify and they creat a naturale showc, if you go out of the path can get much attention beause the nests are camouflage and there is the risk of keep off.

Giannutri is the island for who want discover the mediterranean nature. In the island there is'n only the nature but there is the story too, there is a roman villa (open in the week end). During the dives you cem meet big fish and big crustacea. Giannutri is a marina park and some place are close from the pubblic as the place of Grottoni where there are some underwater cave.

In the island's backdrop there are some wreck: the famouse Nasim with his load of cars adn the much easy wreck Anna Bianca that lie at the deth of 45 m.

Giglio Porto