Pianosa Island

A day on Pianosa equals an experience out of time and space, enjoying heavenly peace


The earliest evidence of human habitation is very ancient, pertaining even to the Neolithic period, a time when the island was in the right position to serve as a stopping point along the route that brought Sardinian obsidian to the Tyrrhenian coast. The island also flourished during the Roman period, when it was chosen as a place of exile by Postumius Agrippa, grandson of Augustus and owner of the large maritime residential complex still partly visible. Its peculiar conformation had to lead Pianosa to be chosen as one of the first early Christian centers on the islands of the Archipelago, the only one of all to have a complex of catacombs dating from the early fourth century AD and now located near the small, partially abandoned village. The history of Pianosa continued when Pisa tried to build a settlement there, which, however, being difficult to defend from pirates due to the lack of natural high ground, was sacked and razed in the 16th century. Instead, the recent history of the island sees an exploitation as a maximum-security prison, which led to a clear division between agricultural spaces, for the use of the prisoners, and a part of the small town used for living by the service personnel: this division was in use until the prison was decommissioned in 1998, and since 1999, guided excursions within the island's territory have been possible.
Thanks to the many enhancement projects that are being activated, Pianosa Island is once again usable for hikers who book their visit experience: history and nature are thus protected and together contribute to defining a unique landscape.