Ancient ships in Elba island

Ancient ships beneath a veil of crystal

As a result of its strategic position on Mediterranean seafaring routes and its excellent berthing facilities, the island of Elba has always been a busy crossroads for maritime traffic, including the mythological Argonauts who, on their quest for the Golden Fleece, landed on the Ghiaie beach, situated on the northern coast of the island.


In addition to the numerous discoveries which have been recovered from the sea  and can be seen in the island’s various museums, the seabed still contains the remains of a number of ancient ships which, due to storms or pirate attacks, met their fate in these waters.


It is very exciting to dive down to admire the relics of these frail vessels, on which dogged sailors challenged the Gods and the elements: there is a 2600 year old Etruscan ship off the coast of Enfola; two Roman ships near Sant’Andrea, one with a load of amphorae of wine; a ship from the 1st century A.D., from Spain, which could have carried up to 7000 amphorae, near Chiessi; a Roman ship from 180 A.D., bearing a load of sulfur and amphorae, near Procchio; and another one at Punta Cera, with a shipload of wheat which was possibly shipwrecked at the end of the 3rd century A.D.