roby ferrari

Photo: Roby Ferrari

If you’re an avid film fanatic, you’ll know that Talamone needs no introduction. The seaside city was featured in the 2008 James Bond film Quantum of Solace as the appropriately luxurious holiday home of one of 007’s Italian friends who dies before the credits roll. 

To perfectly honest, I hated the film, but I loved Talamone’s bit part. Be the judge and have a look-see:

I particularly liked the scantly dressed and supremely younger Italian mistress. Such a complete generalization and fantasy about Italian life, but still so satisfying.

Talamone is along the Tuscan coastline of Monte Argentario. It’s smaller than Porto Ercole and Porto Santo Stefano, attracting a sliver of the tourists that flock to the area in the summer months.

But for all its small size and apparent anonymity on the tourist scene, Talamone  is a destination not to be missed. Its beaches are spectacular, its streets are characteristic and its locals are sophisticated and welcoming all at the same time.

So with the warm weather fast approaching, add Talamone to your holiday list.

Don’t miss:

The Tempio di Tinia: A magnificent tufo rock temple dedicated to the pagan gods and built by the Romans who conquered the hills of Talmonaccio in the 3rd century B.C.E. To find the temple, head out of Talamone and down the Aurelia highway in the direction of Rome. Keep an eye out for the signs. The temple was originally adorned with a stunning stone molding know as the Sette contro Tebe, which is now on display in Orbetello.

Bagno della Donna beach: Talamone’s most spectacular beach is located below La Rocca Fortress at the top of the town. Leave your car parked in Talamone and follow the path that leads to the right of fortress to the beach. You can see it from the top of the town so you can’t get lost.

The gardens of La Rocca Fortress: Talamone’s town council has kindly provided benches in the most panoramic spot of the city. From the top of the promontory around La Rocca Fortress, you can see all of Talamone and the breathtaking coastline around it. The perfect place for a picnic.

talamone

Where to sleep:

Residence Talamone: A clean and modern accommodation with apartments located just outside of Talamone. The price is good as long as you’re not looking for any extra services like a pool or breakfast.

Baia di Talamone: A super chic holiday resort outside of Talamone. With plenty of space and a good price, this one is great for families, but you’ll need a car to explore the city.

Hotel il Telamonio: Probably my top pick simply because it’s in the centre of Talamone and its staff can organise a bunch of tours and excursions for you.

SCAMPI PASTA

Where to eat: 

Talamone is famous for its tagliolini agli scampi – a homemade pasta dish topped with chili, fresh tomatoes and scampi – an Italian crustacean that’s best described as the offspring of a prawn and a lobster (also known as langoustine). Scampi are super sweet and far more flavourful than your average prawn. If you don’t like scampi then I still recommend the fish. Talamone is surrounded by the sea, so its chefs are masters when it comes to seafood.

Here are two of Talamone’s best restaurants:

Il Vicoletto: Completely unpretentious and totally Italian, this restaurant serves the freshest seafood with an utter emphasis on tradition and seasonality.

La Buca: It doesn’t have a website, but this restaurant in Piazza Garibaldi in the centre of town does fish right. The prices are reasonable and everything is homemade.

When to visit: 

Talamone is beautiful anytime of the year, but naturally, it has more to offer tourists in the summer months. Try to avoid August if you can. It’s peak season and the sun can be unbearably hot. I think Talamone is breathtaking in June, when the city also hosts its annual event Non Solo Mare – a great celebration of fun in the sun and extreme water sports.

 Day trips

While you’re in Talamone, make sure you check out:

 

Isola di Giannutri
Isola di Giannutri is the biggest jewel in the jewellery box that is Monte Argentario. A nature reserve, the island accepts only a small number of visitors a day.
Isola del Giglio
Isola del Giglio is completely cut off from Tuscany and not just because it’s an island. From the moment you step off the ferry, you feel like you’re in a different country.
Orbetello
Once the most important port in ancient Etruria, Orbetello is a picturesque and bustling city on the shores of a spectacular lagoon. 
Porto Santo Stefano
Famous for its fishing and even more famous for its seafood restaurants, Porto Santo Stefano’s not old, but it’s incredibly beautiful and very posh.

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