Awaiting Your Return From Shore
The island of Elbe attracts painters, writers and photographers for its
stunning mountain scenery, cliff-fringed coast, secluded coves, and crystal
waters. History buffs, too, find plenty of interest just by concentrating on
Elbaís most famous resident, the exiled Napoleon Bonaparte.
Although he only spent 10 months here (from May 1814 to February 1815),
he made valuable contributions to road and civic works. His one-time
official residence, the Villa dei Molini, stands on the seaward side of the
Piazza Napoleon and contains his library. Although the emperor died on the
island of St. Helena, mass is still said each year in Portoferraio on the
anniversary of his death. Relics in the Misericordia Church include a
reproduction of Napoleon's coffin and a bronze cast of his death mask. About
four miles inland from Portoferraio, on the slopes of Monte San Martino,
stands the Villa San Martino amid luxuriant vegetation. The villa served as
the emperor's summer residence and is now a museum.
The ship is scheduled to dock. From the pier, it is a 10-minute walk to
the town center. Taxis are generally available at the pier.
Shopping. A variety of shops are found in the town center.
Typical souvenirs relate to Napoleon and his time on the island. Leather
articles, Italian fashions and locally mined semi-precious stones may be
of interest. Store hours are usually from 9 to 1 and 4 to 8.
Specialties like gnocchetti di pesce (bite-sized potato and fish
dumplings), pesce all'elbana (fresh white fish baked with vegetables and
potatoes), fish-stuffed ravioli and pasta with fresh shrimp may tempt
you to have lunch or dinner ashore. Some good restaurants are found in
the historic center of Portoferraio and facing the waterfront. Five
miles from town is the exclusive Hermitage Hotel. Its restaurant and bar
are well worth a visit (reservations are recommended).
The two forts, Falcone and Stella, rising above the port, were begun in
1548 and later completed by Napoleon.
Piazza Napoleone. The square is located at the highest point in
town and offers fine views.
Villa dei Molini. On the seaward side of the square stands this
simple villa, which was Napoleonís official residence during his exile
Misericordia Church. This parish church in the Via Napoleone
celebrates a special mass each May on the anniversary of Napoleonís
death. It also contains a bronze cast of his death mask and a
reproduction of his coffin.
Awaiting Your Return
Return to Your
Suite and Sail Away to The Next Adventure
and Dancing Await You