What to See and Do
The oldest part of town is surrounded by walls built in the medieval
times, extending over 1km. Forte Stella on Via della
Stella is available for visits from 9am to 7pm from Easter to September.
At Linguella, off the port, is the Museo Civico Archeologico (tel. 0565 91 73 38) whose collection takes the theme of traditional seafaring.
Between Forte Stella and Forte Falcone on Piazzale Napoleone (tel. 0565 91 58 46) is Villa dei Mulini where Napoleon stayed during his exile. During visits you can see the villa’s spectacular gardens and library. There is a combined admission ticket of €5 to this villa and Villa Napoleonica di San Martino (tel. 0565 91 46 88) on a hill southwest of Portoferraio. It has a gallery built to preserve Napoleon’s belongings.
In May,1814, Portoferraio received the influential emperor Napoleon as its host in exile. Whether he was welcomed or not depends on who is telling the story.
His stay on the island was aimed at improving industry, road works and agriculture. He spent his exile mostly in the Villa dei Mulini where he received some of his relatives and his lover, Maria Walewska.
When he realised his stay on the island was at risk and other destinations were under active consideration, he decided to sail hidden in a vessel which took him to the mainland and from onwards just to end up in Waterloo, beaten and finally exiled.
At Portoferraio port itself from Easter to mid October, Acquavision offers a kaleidoscopic trip around the waters of the island on a glass-bottomed boat allowing passengers to observe life under the water´s surface(tel.328 709 54 70).
West of Portoferraio other beaches lie one after the other along the coastline, such as the stony Spiaggia la Padulella, Spiaggia di Capo Bianco and Viticcio
There are several sources to use to find out more about Portoferraio and the whole island.
Info Park Are@ (tel. 0565 91 88 09;Viale Elba) provides information on the Parco Nazionale Archipelago Toscano.
The tourist information office is on Calata Italia 43 off the ferry terminal (tel. 0565 91 46 71). It provides information about scuba diving and windsurfing, a map, and walking and cycling trails.
Il Libraio (tel.0565 91 71 35; Calata Mazzini 10) also supplies walking and cycling maps of Elba.
To find out information on the net, link www.elbalink.it where there is much to read up on or jump straight into the action and and rent a bike or kayak at Centro Trekking Isola d’Elba (tel. 0565 93 08 37; www.geniodelbosco.it).