Italy: Follonica & Elba Island

So as I mentioned in my last post, I was on vacation this past week.  The first day of my vacation was spent riding the train from Firenze to Follonica (my first ever train ride — and it’s my new favorite way to travel) and then getting settled into my hotel room.


The view from my room was absolutely fabulous, and I’m positive that you could not have gotten a room at a hotel on the beach, with a sea view, for that cheap in the states.


I spent hours on the beach, reading, watching the sea, listening to the waves, and even going into the ocean waist deep for a while (though I was the only one — the Italians preferred to stay on the beach and sun).



I went out that evening to get something to eat and I discovered that the town was small, and unlike Firenze, not packed with tourists, and far more open so that I could always see the sky.  It was gorgeous and quiet.  I had a lovely time.



I was up early enough the next morning to watch the sunrise and then I was off to the train station to go to Polombino.  From there, I caught a ferry to Elba Island.


My first view of Portoferraio.


The thing I was most excited to see were Napoleon’s residences, and though his main home wasn’t open, the summer villa was so I took a taxi ride there (and hiked back — it was about an hour and a half long walk).



There was no mistaking whose home this was: the letter “N” was everywhere.




Inside were many paintings, drawings, and cartoons of Napoleon and his life.






After Napoleon’s villa, I went to the ruins of the Medici fortress, which were a bit of a climb, but totally worth it, since the views are absolutely amazing.



Every level that I reached on the fortress I found tons of wildflowers and geckos.



I found another area to climb with some gorgeous views and brought my photo count to around 1300.



The train ride home.



4 thoughts on “Italy: Follonica & Elba Island

  1. Wow, what an excursion!! Train rides are great, aren’t they? That beach place is amazing! Love hearing about your hikes and “special finds” along the way. You’re really getting to know the country.

  2. This is a joy to read and especially see. I’ll try to copy it and send it to your Dad, he really liked the last one! Keep up the good work!

  3. what gets me is that I look through the tunnel and I realize that hundreds of years ago, a pair of eyes looked through it too, only those eyes had the name Medici attatched to them! Amazing!

    • Ya, I was thinking that as I was walking up the levels. I just couldn’t understand how all the Medici men were described as fat! It is not an easy climb!

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