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Getting there & away

Elba is an agreeable one-hour ferry journey from Piombino. If you arrive in Piombino by train, take a connecting train on to the port. Boats to Portoferraio are the most frequent, while some call in at Rio Marina, Marina di Campo and Porto Azzurro.

Boats are run by Moby (199 30 30 40; www.moby.it) and Toremar (199 12 31 99; www.toremar.it in Italian). Unless it is a summer weekend or the middle of August, when queues can form, simply buy a ticket at the port. Fares (€6.50 to €9.50 per person, €20 to €49 per small car) vary according to the season.

Toremar also operates a passenger-only hydrofoil service (€10, 40 minutes) all year round, and, between June and August, a fast vehicle and passenger service (two people/car from €69.20 return) to Portoferraio.