The islands of Ventotene and S. Stefano are two small pearls in the southern Tyrrhenian Sea, part of the Pontine archipelago in the province of Latina. Ventotene, the larger of the two, is about 2,800 metres long and 800 metres wide in its widest part. S. Stefano, the islet in front of Ventotene, about one sea mile away, is the site of the homonymous prison, which has been closed for about 45 years. It is a small strip of land in the middle of the sea, which for years was a place of confinement and segregation and today, more than ever, is a heritage of humanity and a symbol of unity and freedom. Our islands are a true heritage of culture, history and nature, and for these reasons they have been a State Nature Reserve and Protected Marine Area for about twelve years, in order to preserve and give everyone the chance to visit and get to know these unique places, even in the future.