Land, sea … and bicycle. The Island of Elba has always been considered a small paradise for cyclists, who can find here undulating paths with often unpredictable trajectories, jagged coasts, mountains and beautiful horizons on the crystalline sea.
A journey into Mediterranean nature, between cultivated lands and wilder areas, quickly passing from sunrise to sunset, in which to discover small fishing villages.
The proposed itinerary explores the eastern part of the island, the oldest, between Rio Marina and Cavo, where there are the iron deposits that made Elba famous throughout the Mediterranean area since the Etruscan era.
The loop bike tour is 21 km long, with departure and arrival at Rio Marina.
From the town, head north towards Cavo: first you turn inland slightly uphill, then, after passing Rio Albano, continue to Cala del Telegrafo from where a gradual descent follows the coastal profile up to Cavo.
From here you cycle back south but passing through the inlands, facing the most demanding stretch of the route, the climb of the “Parata” , a road immersed in the scrub that in 7 km reaches the Passo della Parata (242 m.), Located between Monte Serra and the Torre del Giove.
From the pass, follow the descent towards Rio nell’Elba (which deserves a stop), before pedaling the last kilometers towards Rio Marina and returning to the coast.
The itinerary does not present excessive technical difficulties but still has some slightly demanding passages: the first section (4 km) is characterized by some ups and downs while the ascent of the Parata, although not too steep, is constant for 7 km.
Elba Island, the attractions not to be missed
The beaches of the Island of Elba are certainly the first attractions on the island, the clear water will reflect everything that surrounds it, from the fine sand bottoms, to the smooth and spotted pebbles or the cliffs that offer us beautiful sunsets flush with horizon, you will surely find the one that will amaze you most. We recommend that you see the beaches of Cavoli and Sansone at least once, which are respectively the best sandy beach and the most beautiful pebble beach on the island.
The Cavoli beach is located in the Municipality of Marina di Campo and is recommended for young people who love a golden tan, in a bay surrounded by a rich Mediterranean vegetation, very well sheltered from the northerly winds given the presence of Monte Capanne. which makes the temperatures favorable for most of the year even beyond the summer period. The sandy beach in summer is very crowded due to its splendid beauty and it will not be easy to park the car but it will be enough to stop nearby and walk a short panoramic stretch on foot to enjoy its charm.
The beach of Sansone in the municipality of Portoferraio is sprinkled with beautiful spotted pebbles and smoothed by the waves of the sea, and it is precisely what makes the contrast with the clear water spectacular, almost making it seem to be suspended in the air rather than immersed in the sea. It can be reached in about 15 minutes on foot in a beautiful panoramic path that divides it from the nearby beach of the Sorgente, we recommend shoes and not the classic flip-flops given the presence of rocks. Excellent for those who practice snorkeling or canoeing, especially in the days of sirocco where the sea makes the seabed unique, full of fish that hide in the numerous caves that you can only find by diving. The beach is equipped and offers every comfort.
Elba Island, typical traditional dishes
The flavors of Elban cuisine are based on simple dishes, where imagination and wisdom in the choice of ingredients dominate, and it is this cuisine, once considered poor, which today with the advent of tourism has become refined. Among these, the stockfish alla riese stands out, a sublime dish accompanied by salted anchovies, onion, tomatoes, basil, parsley, green peppers, black olives, pine nuts, capers and of course oil, chili and salt.
Gurguglione, another specialty based on vegetables, rice with cuttlefish ink, stuffed squid, the famous cacciucco or fish soup, but also very simple dishes such as boiled octopus, fried zerri or stuffed sardines.
Cover Image: 365mountainbike