One hundred and seventy feet above sea level, 16 square kilometers, less than 1,200 inhabitants and a thousand year history related to mineral deposits on which it stands. Difficult to understand the history of the island without visiting this country.
The houses huddled together with basic and small openings on the outside, the church rinserrata in the walls of a fortress and the splendid isolation, testify to a life dominated by fear. Fear became terror when, in full Renaissance, the struggles between the Empire and the kingdom of France led the latter to an unholy alliance with the Ottoman Empire, leaving the Italian coast at the mercy of the looting of the Turkish navy.
Rio nell'Elba is the heart of the mining island of Elba, iron mines active for more than two thousand years, but now closed for over thirty years.
The visit will include a visit to the country to the old wash houses, from which part of a valley that today you would not think, but until early last century saw the presence of as many as 22 mills! Even the small mining museum and archaeological pieces is recommended for both for the environment in which they are exposed.
From the village, along a steep uphill road is reached, after a challenging hike, the castle of Volterraio, the only fort never conquered the island of Elba, of spectacular beauty and for the view that the fact of being built on a rocky outcrop of jasper.
Outside the village, on the road to Nisportino, should leave the car and visit the Sanctuary of Saint Catherine of Alexandria, with its beautiful rose garden and a ortobotanico with native species. On Easter Monday it is impossible not to find this place because it's tradition that you do from morning to evening party.
A couple of miles away, in front of the sanctuary, will not escape the sight of a hill with a ruined castle, the tower of Jupiter is also known as Yoke fortress, built in 1460 and within walking distance with a path is not always smooth.
The most famous seaside resorts of Rio Nell'Elba are Nisporto Nisportino and Bagnaia.
The first two are particularly suitable for those wishing to spend a holiday of sea and nature, Bagnaia instead divides the shoreline with the town of Portoferraio.