This guide to the best beaches near Rome, Italy focuses on the Rome beaches which are easy to reach with public transport, travelling there and back within a day.

While the county of Lazio has some outstandingly attractive beaches including the Latina beaches of the Pontine islands and Sabaudia in the south, these are not really suitable for just a day trip from Rome.

This guide to the best beaches near Rome, Italy includes bus and train timetables updated for 2021, plus a price guide for the Rome beaches with paid facilities, such as sunbeds and umbrellas. And when you’re done here, don’t forget to check out my guide to Italian swimwear style!

Whereas if you’re looking for some tips on the Amalfi Coast, bookmark my stories on Positano and Ravello. If you’re heading to the Venetian coast, I also have guides on visiting Venice, free things to do in Venice, sustainable Venice tourism and camping near Venice.

The best beaches near Rome include Ostia, Sperlonga, Gaeta, Anzio, Santa Marinella and Fregene, and they all have a different character and vary in the time it takes to reach them and the kinds of beaches you will find there.  So with towel, sunscreen and water at the ready, here’s the full breakdown of the best Rome beaches, including some locals-only hacks.

Best Lazio beaches & Rome beaches: This guide to the best beaches near Rome includes how to get to the best Rome beaches
View from medieval Gaeta to inspire your inner Magritte

The best beaches near Rome 2021: cleanest Rome beaches

While Italy boasts one of the most stunning coastlines in Europe, the beaches near Rome can’t really compare with the crystal-clear waters found in parts of Sardinia, Puglia or Sicily (check out my guide to some of the best beaches in Sicily right here).

Despite this, the best Rome beaches still make for a fun and family-friendly day out, and many Rome beaches can be easily reached using public transport.  Your choice of the best beaches near Rome depends on whether you’re focused on bathing in the cleanest possible sea water, or whether you’re simply looking for a pleasant sandy beach with an umbrella and sunbed hire, or something in between.

This guide to the best beaches near Rome will cover the obvious options, including the closest beach to Rome, Ostia, just a 30 minute train ride from the centre of Rome. We’re also going to look at harder-to-reach beaches near Rome famous for clean sea and outstanding natural beauty. As a general guide, the further you are prepared to move from the centre of Rome, the cleaner the water.

Best Rome beaches & best Lazio beaches: how to get to the best beaches near Rome, including Sperlonga, Anzio, Gaeta, Santa Severa and Santa Mariella

The Lazio region won nine ‘bandiera blu’ for 2020, Italy’s clean water classification, for the beaches of Gaeta, Latina, Sabaudia, San Felice Circeo, Sperlonga, Terracina and Ventotene in the province of Latina, as well as Anzio in the province of Rome, plus the lake beach of Trevignano on Lake Bracciano.

Fregene still makes our recommended Rome beach list, despite not having a blue flag, in the spirit of trying something different; Ostia, the closest beach to Rome, makes the list for sheer convenience. This is the only beach actually in the city of Rome on our list. Ostia beaches range from free, public beaches, to the modestly priced cancelli, and paying beach resorts.

Best Rome beaches: best beaches near Rome

We haven’t covered Latina beaches Sabaudia or Circeo in this list of best beaches near Rome, Italy as you have to get a coach from Rome to those destinations, which, from personal experience, is pretty hot and a bit too long-winded for a day trip. If you are planning on visiting Sabaudia, the coach leaves from Laurentina in south Rome. Otherwise, you really need a car. The same goes for Capalbio in the north, which has a pretty coastal area but is really a car-only destination.

Ventotene forms part of the Pontine islands, so has to be reached by boat, and is too far for a day trip. Full details on how to visit the Pontine islands and the best of the Latina beaches coming up in another post.

Lazio beaches: this guide to the best beaches near Rome includes how to get to the best Rome beaches with public transport, including how to get to Ostia and Fregene, how to get to Sperlonga, Anzio, Gaeta, Santa Severa and Santa Mariella. The best beaches in Lazio.
The Pontine islands are gorgeous, but too far for a day trip.

1.   The best beaches near Rome 2021: Ostia

Romans have a love-hate relationship with Ostia, the small beach town which lies 25 km south-west of the city. It’s easy to get to – there are urban trains that link to the metro line in the city, so from anywhere in Rome, you just need to take the metro to Piramide, San Paolo or Eur Magliana, and change onto the Lido train line to reach the beach in around 30 minutes.

Tickets to the coast cost just €1.50 and can be bought on the spot, but it can be handy to get your return ticket in advance so you’re not stuck looking for a ticket machine that works in Ostia or a tobacconist to sell you a ticket. Credit cards can also be used at turnstiles for contactless payment, providing a handy cashless option.

Ostia boasts the only beaches in Rome, Italy – in the sense that they are the only Rome beaches actually in the city limits. It’s worth noting that the seawater isn’t that clean throughout Ostia, and in the main part of town, the seafront is literally gated off and ‘managed’ by private bathing establishments, which effectively charge you even to see the sea.

Lazio beaches: this guide to the best beaches near Rome includes how to get to the best Rome beaches with public transport, including how to get to Ostia and Fregene, how to get to Sperlonga, Anzio, Gaeta, Santa Severa and Santa Mariella. The best beaches in Lazio.

Ostia itself is characterised by a bustling sea-front, with lots of families with strollers, youths and cyclists trying to tackle its overrun cycle path, and row upon row of private or paying beaches. The controversy here – and say it in a whisper – is that many of the bathing establishments are run by a kind of local ‘mafia’, and you will see them rigorously enforcing that you pay to even get in and walk along the seafront.

Forget trying to bypass the controls and place a towel on the sand, even really close to the waves, as if you are within the parallel lines defining each private beach club, you will be charged something for occupying even a small piece of beach there.

That said, there are some good value options here as far as beaches in Rome go, and most will let you enter for €5 if you just want to stick your towel on a square of sand and soak up some sun. As the closest beach to Rome, Ostia is a good option for the traveller short on time. Otherwise, just go with the flow and rent a sunbed and umbrella at one of the Ostia beach clubs, with prices for either starting at about €8 apiece.

When you get off the train at Lido Centro, in the heart of Ostia, expect to walk through a recently renovated pedestrian area in the town and cross the busy street that flanks the seafront to reach the stretch of Rome beaches. Look out for the large dome of the church – Santa Maria di Regina Pacis – and you know that you are getting close to the sea.

Once you reach the Ostia seafront, if you turn left, keeping the sea on your right, you will eventually reach a couple of stretches of free Roman beach in the heart of Ostia, but they get very busy, noisy and dirty in the summer and are only recommended if you’re on a real budget and frankly don’t care much, beyond getting a tan and having a quick dip in the water.

If , on reaching the seafront, you turn right, keeping the sea on your left, there are a few smart bathing establishments which are ideal for a day at the sea. Keep going, and you will eventually reach the port of Ostia, a smart and recently constructed docking area for yachts and boats of all dimensions, well-served by a cluster of restaurants and bars. Out of season, it is also fun to stroll or bike down here and contemplate the port, before stopping for a cool drink or a bite to eat near the beach.

6. The best beaches near Rome 2021: Santa Severa

Pretty Santa Savera has a reassuringly wild feel, with its impressive castle overlooking the sea and a long stretch of wide sandy beach, making it one of the best beaches near Rome. Much of the beach is the so-called 'spiaggia libera' - a beach freely accessible by all, but lacking the facilities of the paying beaches.

However, these multiple options for beach lovers and the size of the sandy area means that this beach is absolutely packed during the summer months. I actually prefer this Rome beach off-season, as pictured above, for a stroll in the springtime or the autumn, including a quick ice-cream or a light lunch before returning to Rome.

If you are looking for budget accommodation to extend your stay, the Castle of Santa Severa actually hosts a wonderful, clean and smart hostel with private rooms and dorms overlooking the sea. For the full details, head to my review of my night in Santa Severa Castle.

How to get to Santa Severa with public transport: It takes about an hour to reach Santa Severa by train, and the train line is the same one that takes you to Fregene. Tickets cost about €4.00.

Lunch tip: Pino al Mare, a restaurant connected to one of the beach resort's better hotels, serves an elegant fish-focused menu - but keeps its feet firmly in the sand. Restaurant review here.

Best Lazio beaches: this guide to the best beaches near Rome includes how to get to the best Rome beaches with public transport, including how to get to Ostia and Fregene, how to get to Sperlonga, Anzio, Gaeta, Santa Severa and Santa Mariella. The best beaches in Lazio.

7. The best beaches near Rome 2021: Anzio

Anzio is just an hour away from Termini and trains run hourly (slightly less frequently on a Sunday); while the beaches are a pleasant surprise. While Anzio doesn't offer the closest beaches to Rome, it does boast some of the best beaches near Rome in terms of light, fine sand and clean sea.

To reach the Rome beaches in Anzio, I suggest getting off the train at Marechiaro station, from which it’s a short walk to the seafront where you can choose public or private bathing clubs; this stretch of coast was a deserving winner of the blue flag award once again this year and the sea is clean. Try the stabilimenti of Tortuga or Sole e Luna for a simple and natural experience (we paid €26 in July for two sunbeds and an umbrella at Sole e Luna; the beach is pretty busy at this time of year). Anzio truly deserves its reputation as one of the best Latina beaches.

Anzio played its part in the second world war beach landings so history buffs might want to check out the Anzio War Cemetery or the Beach Head Cemetery, its two Commonwealth War resting places.

How to get to Anzio with public transport:  With a single costing just €3.60 (or ask for a 24 hour Lazio ticket costing €8) it’s a pretty cheap day out for some of the best beaches near Rome.

Lunch tip: The fish is excellent at Punto D’Anzio in the town centre. It’s a small and popular restaurant so you might want to book in the evenings.

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