The Italian Almanac
Italian News - May 27
Italian environmental group Legambiente's beach guide, which uses 128 parameters to comb 243 coastal spots in a yearly quality test, again gave Southern Italy top marks. Not all of Italy's extensive coastline -- 1,850 kilometers or circa 1,150 miles -- makes the grade, but figures are improving.
The list can be used to decide where to go, but also where to expect crowds: in a recent poll 41% of Italians said they plan to vacation by sunning on beaches and southern Italian beaches continue to dominate better-known locales in Liguria and Tuscany. Famous beach spots Rimini and Riccione on the Adriatic coast were towards the bottom of these ratings.
These 10 spots received a perfect five out of five "sails" rating: Otranto (Puglia), Buoso (Sardinia), Cinque Terre (Liguria), Orosei (Sardinia) , Pollica Acciaroli e Pioppi (Campania), Tropea (Calabria), Castiglione della Pescaia (Tuscany), Arbus (Sardinia) and Tremiti Islands (Puglia).
Ratings also take into account natural beauty, contamination but also tourist structures, noise levels and environment-friendly waste systems.