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Italy's Beautiful Hidden Island Escapes

Everyone has heard of Sicily and Sardinia but there are so many more islands to explore in Italy. Did you know Italy’s coast is surrounded by more than 400 islands? A large number are quite remote and uninhabited but there are so many enchanting islands you can visit. And, best of all, these islands are not as touristy as other Italian destinations.


Below are our favorite hidden island escapes in Italy...

The beautiful island of Ischia, Italy


This picturesque volcanic island is located in the Tyrrhenian Sea, at the northern end of the Gulf of Naples. Known for its stunning landscapes, thermal springs, and historical sites, Ischia is a wellness retreat. Here you can find relaxation, enjoy adventure activities and cultural experiences.

What to do on Ischia:

  • Relax at Thermal Spas - Thermal parks on the island offer numerous thermal pools and saunas.

  • Explore the beaches - Ischia has beautiful beaches for sunbathing, swimming and enjoying beachside restaurants.

  • Hike for Breathtaking Views - Reach the highest point on the island for panoramic views or wander through a beautiful botanical garden.

  • Discover Villages and Towns - Shops, vibrant nightlife, and historical sites are found in the towns and fishing villages of Ischia.

Lago di Venere in Pantelleria Island, Italy


This small volcanic island located on the Mediterranean Sea, is situated between the coast of Tunisia and the island of Sicily. The island offers stunning natural beauty with dramatic cliffs, hidden coves, and crystal clear waters. Pantelleria has grown in popularity as a very chic destination.

What to do on Pantelleria:

  • Explore numerous hiking trails – one trail leads you to a natural sauna in a cave!

  • Swimming – there are no beaches around Pantelleria but swimming and mud bathing in a beautiful lake in the crater of a former volcano is spectacular. 

  • Visit historical sites including ruins and medieval castles.

The beautiful island of Ponza, Italy


Located off the western coast of Italy (not far from Rome), this is one of the most charming and blissful islands. Ponza is renowned for its beautiful beaches, many of which are only accessible by boat or via steep paths.

What to do on Ponza:

  • Swimming - There are many beautiful beaches around the island, some are known for their natural swimming pools carved into the rocks.

  • Boating and Sailing - A must do while in Ponza as you can explore a complex system of ancient Roman tunnels and pools carved into the rocks, historically used for fish farming.

  • Explore Historical Sites - The main town in Ponza features colorful houses, narrow streets and a picturesque harbor. The island has remnants of Roman architecture, including cisterns, necropolises, and ruins of villas

Lipari Island, Aeolian Islands, Italy

The Aeolian Islands

These islands are a volcanic archipelago located in the Tyrrhenian Sea, north of Sicily. The seven islands are Vulcano, Lipari, Salina, Stromboli, Filicudi, and Alicudi. All have smoking volcanic peaks. Of the seven, Vulcano and Stromboli have active volcanoes. Lipari is the liveliest and most popular to visit. It offers charming pedestrain streets, historic castles, and a lively port.


What to do on the Aeolian Islands:

  • Hiking - climb to the summit of a volcano.

  • Snorkeling and Diving – the islands are known for their clear waters and rich marine life.

  • Enjoy Boating - Rent a boat or join a sailing tour to explore the coastline, sea caves, and hidden coves of the islands.

  • Swimming / Mud baths - Enjoy the beautiful beaches, some with black sand. Relax in the natural mud baths and thermal springs.


Italian islands are renowned for their diverse landscapes, rich histories, and vibrant cultures, making them some of the most captivating destinations in the Mediterranean. Contact me for more details or to begin planning your next getaway.

At Distinct Vacations we partner with in-country travel suppliers allowing us to offer out-of-the-ordinary, non-Googleable, local experiences with premium service throughout your vacation.


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