Italy is a country in Southern Europe that occupies the Italian Peninsula and numerous islands in the Mediterranean Sea. The southern parts of the Alps and the Po Valley are also part of Italy. The country has a total area of 301,340 km2, and including its islands, the total coastline of Italy has a length of 7,600 km. Italy's islands are mostly small in size, but have relatively high populations.
The Five Largest Islands in Italy
With an area of 25,711 km2, Sicily is the biggest island in Italy. The island is located in the Mediterranean Sea and is separated from the Italian Peninsula by the Strait of Messina. Sicily is home to Europe’s tallest volcano, Mount Etna, which has an elevation of 3,329 m. The island has an estimated population of 5,029,675, which accounts for nearly 8.3% of Italy's population. Sicily features a rich and unique culture, as well as the country's eighth-largest regional economy. Additionally, industrial growth has rapidly increased in Sicily in recent years. The island experiences a pleasant Mediterranean climate and contains fertile soils that allow agriculture to flourish in Sicily.
Sardinia is the second-largest island in Italy, covering an area of 24,089 km2, and has an estimated population of 1,651,793. Sardinia is located west of the Italian Peninsula and south of the French island of Corsica. Like Sicily, Sardinia is also a region of Italy and has some degree of domestic autonomy. Sardinia is often referred to as a "micro-continent," as it has a great diversity of ecosystems including woods, long sandy beaches, plains, and mountains. The island has the world’s highest density of sheep, as well as a thriving agricultural sector. Mining is one of the major economic activities in Sardinia, and its tertiary sector is also well-developed.
Elba is a Mediterranean island in Italy's Tuscany region. The island is located in the Tyrrhenian Sea and is 10 km from Piombino, a coastal town on the Italian Peninsula, and 50 km east of he French island of Corsica. With an area of 223 km2, Elba is the largest island in the Tuscan Archipelago and the third largest island in Italy in terms of area, but is significantly smaller than Sicily and Sardinia. Elba has an estimated population of 32,162 and is part of the Arcipelago Toscano National Park.
Sant'Antioco is the fourth largest island of Italy, covering an area of 109 km2. The island is part of the Province of South Sardinia and has an estimated population of 11,152. Sant'Antioco is connected to Cagliari, the capital of Sardinia, by a state road and bridge.
With an area of 83 km2, Pantelleria is the fifth biggest island in Italy. The island is located in the Strait of Sicily in the Mediterranean Sea, about 100 km southwest of Sicily. Pantelleria is a volcanic island with several volcanic features such as hot springs and fumaroles. The island has an estimated population of 7,759.