Gorgona Island

Gorgona, the smallest and northernmost islands of the Tuscan Archipelago, had been originated million years ago by the scission from Corsica's tectonic plate; once detached from its mother island, Gorgona remained in the middle of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Since 1860, because of its isolation, Gorgona was intended to house a prison that still exists today.

Gorgona's territory and its surrounding sea are entirely included within the Tuscan Archipelago National Park, and it refers to the Municipality of Livorno from which port it is connected by ferry. Gorgona is entirely mountainous, rugged and craggy on the western side, more sloping, with undulations covered of lush vegetation, on the eastern side. The island is almost completely covered by the Mediterranean maquis but other trees were introduced such as the Aleppo pine, cypress, oak, olive and chestnut. Even some holm oak woods survive nowadays as an example of what was the natural Mediterranean forest that once covered the whole island of Gorgona.

Birdlife is very rich, in fact there are yellow-legged gulls and Audouin's gulls, european shags, northern ravens, buzzards and peregrine falcons. The islanders live in the ancient fishing village of nearly 70 people where, in 1869, was built the penal colony as a branch of Pianosa's prison. Inmates live in a regime of semi-liberty and they are dedicated to agriculture, fisheries and farming. They produce wine, cheese, honey and implanted even a small farm of sea bream. In order to visit the island during summer you need to get the permit of the prison's Directorate with authorization of the Ministry of Justice; obviously, for safety reasons, the visitors are numerically controlled. In the past, under the domination of Pisa were erected some fortifications, as the Torre Vecchia (Old Tower), while other buildings like the Torre Nuova (New Tower) were constructed by the Medici family.

Province: Livorno
Area Code: 0586
Coastline: 5.5 km
Area: 2.25 km²
Municipality: Livorno
Maximum altitude: 255 meters
Location: Latitude 43 ° 26 ' North - Longitude 9 ° 54' East
Distances: 37 km from Livorno

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