just out of rome there is the (ancient) Roman beach area of Ostia Antica, flat beaches, sun sand and roman ruins all in one. A lot of the beaches up the west coast can be pebbly but there are some sandy ones like at San Vincenzo and Grosetto, part of the Maremma national park, and these arent far from Pisa or Cinque Terre, another stunning area to explore. All the beaches are certified with the blue flag for cleanliness, the most flags awarded in the past 10 years, and you can find all sorts of beachy fun like diving, windsurfing, surfing and sailing. Or you can just hang out and watch the italian guys try to impress the italian girls. check out the tpunk accomm listings for these areas.