Italy's Robinson Crusoe Leaving Deserted Island 32 Years Later Due to Eviction Threats

Lois Oladejo
May 02, 2021
08:00 P.M.

An Italian man named Mauro Morandi, who has been living on a deserted island since 1989, has been forced to relocate after receiving eviction threats.


A man described as the Italian version of Robinson Crusoe, who had been living on a Mediterranean Island for 32 years, is finally leaving following pressure from authorities to vacate.

The 81-year-old man named Mauro Morandi came across an island off Sardinia called Budelli, famous for its pink beach sands, in 1989. He found himself on the island after his catamaran broke down while he was traveling to the south pacific.

Seawater splashed on rocks on the shore. | Photo: Pexels

Seawater splashed on rocks on the shore. | Photo: Pexels

Morandi soon discovered that the island's caretaker was soon to retire. Hence, he ditched his sailing trip, traded his boat, and took over the role.

Since taking over that role, Morandi, who used to live in a former second world war shelter that overlooked a bay, has discovered everything about the island.


However, he is leaving the island at the end of April after facing several threats of eviction from authorities of the La Maddalena National Park.

They want to reclaim the island and transform it into a hub for environmental education. Morandi says he has given up the fight, adding that he is sad to leave after spending 32 years on the island.

Glasheen moved to the island in May 1997.


He said the authorities told him they need to work on his house. The national park authorities also argued that the man made changes to the structure of the house without the permits required. Morandi, who hails from Modena in northern Italy, plans to move into a small apartment nearby. He said:

"I'll be living in the outskirts of the main town, so will just go there for shopping and the rest of the time keep myself to myself. My life won't change too much."


He is also hopeful that someone can protect Budelli as well as he has done. Morandi has indeed done a good job with the island, guarding it, clearing its paths, ensuring its beaches are pristine, and teaching others about its ecosystem.

Morandi is in many ways similar to another real-life Robinson Crusoe, David Glasheen, who has lived alone on a deserted island, Restoration Island, off North-East Australia, with his dog Polly, for over 20 years.


Glasheen moved to the island in May 1997 after losing his fortune after the stock exchange crash of the same year. However, he feels safe on the island and believes it has a surprising upside as he is also safe from terrorists.

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