Have you ever thought that Sardinia might be more than just a spectacular place? A voyage over an emerald sea, past characteristic coves, beaches of snow-white sand, natural contrasts, lights and colors, along with the wild and pure nature are some of the things that define this amazing region.
Did you know that Sardinia is one of Europe’s best and most-loved island holiday destinations? With its golden beaches, dramatic volcanic scenarios, delicious food and relaxing views, Sardinia is both surprising and enigmatic. Another thing that may surprise you is the number of prehistoric sites, the enigmatic round stone towers; you can walk on original Roman streets and visit the ruin of cities built by the Phoenicians. There are also unique local costumes and traditional festivals, attractions you’ll find no place else, a cuisine that’s quite distinct from the rest of Italy; all of these make Sardinia a one-of-a kind destination. Let’s capture Sardinia in 10 highlights!
1.See your feet in the clear water!
Sardinia is well known to have the most beautiful beaches in the entire Mediterranean Sea. Beaches like Cala Ganone, Li Coggi or the touristic Costa Smeralda consistently appear in the top of ‘The World’s Best Beaches’. You should definitely explore the amazing breathtaking views of the sea on your next trip to Sardinia! There’s nothing more delightful and peaceful than exploring the beauty of the wild blue beaches. Are you looking for Paradise on Earth? Sardinian beaches are stunning with turquoise waters and fine white sands.
One can’t miss the chance to discover Porto Ferro Beach-the world’s most colorful beach- for its peculiar characteristics.
Porto Ferro Beach is unique for the beauty given by the clear crystalline waters along with the sandy shore and the trachyte rocks. The beach is framed by a magnificent stretch of green and the two kilometers long sand beach has colors that varies from ochre to orange. The color of the sand derives from volcanic deposits as well as unusual orange limestone found in the area. Another interesting thing that you should not miss is the color of the sea which varies from blue to dark blue.
When the sea is moved by the wind, it provides a host of emotions for surfers and wind surfers, while on calm days it is a great idea to hire a boat to explore the wonderful stretch of the coast. The sea abounds with fish and it is also a favorite destination for scuba-divers.
Where to stay?
Villa Palma- Olbia
Villa Palma is located in the Olbia area North East of Sardinia close to the Costa Smeralda. The villa boasts panoramic sea view from its solarium and is only 250 m from the beach.
2. Explore the Sardinian wildlife!
Sardinia has a very rich and unique wildlife. The unspoiled natural areas and abundant species of wildlife make Sardinia a heavenly place to be, for anyone who enjoys the great outdoors. The island also creates ideal habitat conditions for plants and animals. The isolation has pretty much given it the gift of diversity. None of the animals that live near Sardinia are poisonous or very dangerous, so you can feel free and secure to explore the island without fear.
Unique species of deer and foxes live in the woods and mountains, while many different types of birds, including the Flamingo- called by the Sardinians the “rose colored folk”- visit the island every year in great numbers. The island is home to several rare or uncommon mammals, some of which are endemic subspecies such as: Mediterranean monk seal, albino donkey, Sardinian wild cat, mouflon, Sardinian long-eared bat, Sardinian fox, Sardinian hare, wild boar, edible dormouse and European pine marten.
There are four endemic subspecies of birds: great spotted woodpecker, great tit, common chaffinch and Eurasian jay. Take lots of photos because this diversity can be spotted near the shores quite regularly.
Where to stay?
VILLA PRIA – CHIA
Chia is situated near the southern point of Sardinia and the area has an interesting combination of nature and archaeology. Travelling slightly inland is one of Sardinia’s most beautiful and largest nature reserves: Is Cannoneris which extends among mountainous granite rocks. This is a beautiful semi-detached house (130sqm) with magnificent private swimming and garden with sea views. It is located on the ridge of the hill overlooking the magnificent white sandy beaches of Chia.
3. Taste the local food and drinks!
One of the absolute must-do’s when visiting Sardinia is to enjoy the local food and taste. Sardinian food is characterized by very strong flavors. Eating, in Sardinia, means tradition and plates typical of the Sardinian cuisine, much like in the rest of central and southern Italy, a reason to pass time with your dear ones, to laugh and tell the last news.
Sardinian Cuisine is distinctive for its lumache (snails), moscardine (small spiced octopus) and vegetables like mirinzana (eggplant), faba (broad beans) and carciofi (spiny artichokes). Pecorino sheep’s cheese is produced everywhere and as well as fresh ricotta. This region also contains the Sella&Mosca winery, being the largest in Europe.
Spicy fish soups called Burrida and Cassola, along with lobsters, crabs, anchovies, squid, clams and fresh are the most popular Sardinian dishes. We must mention that pasta dishes include: Spaghetti con Bottarga made with dried gray mullet roe shaved on top; Malloreddus is a gnocchi style pasta flavored with saffron and served with a tomato sauce. Culingiones are round ravioli stuffed with spinach and cheese. Sardinia produces some of the best lamb in all of Italy and it is known for being very lean. Abbamele is a honey-based product made in Sardinia. Selected honeycombs are pressed to extract all honey and pollen which is then reduced in copper pots. The honey can be flavored with lemon or orange rinds. Abbamele is dark like molasses with a complex flavor that has hints of coffee and caramel. Abbamele is also similar to molasses in appearance but tastes like honey and is usually eaten with cheese and fresh fruit or even drizzled over pasta or vegetables.
Where to stay?
VILLA – DEL GOLF – TRILO
This is a recently built complex located on a hill above the beautiful sea of Stintino, an ancient fishermen’s village approximately 6km away with the world famous beach of ‘La Pelosa’, a white, sandy shore that stretches out before a transparent, turquoise sea. In Stintino you will find everything you need like supermarkets, local shops and crafts, bars, restaurants, night entertainment and discos.
4. Go underground in Sardinian mines!
People say that Sardinia is an island with an incredible diversity. Just think of Sardinia’s historic mines, which were recently declared by UNESCO to be World Heritage Sites. Mining in Sardinia has a history that spans over two thousand years.
The Phoenicians, the Nurgaher and the Romans and more recently, even the British and French all mined valuable natural resources here, including lead and zinc, coal and anthracite, gold and silver, iron, fluorite and talc. The abandoned mines still contain all these minerals. Many of these mines have been converted into museums.
In Gadoni, in central Sardinia, you can visit a Phoenician ruin and listen to the sound of a natural waterfall.
The long mining history of Sardinia started probably around the 6th millennium BC, which means that mining has played an important role in the island’s history. That is why this region is very attractive for travelers and culture-lovers trying to avoid mass-tourism.
Where to stay?
Villa Rosalia is sought after for its great views of the bay, its tranquility and it’s all day sun drenched warm pool.
5. Gaze at Kite surfers at Isola dei Gabbiani!
Hiking in the Sardinian mountains, walking along the rocky coastline or visiting one of the many interesting museums are excellent recommendations, but the same goes for visiting Isola dei Gabbiani. During the summer months’ kite surfers visit this island near Palau, in the north of Sardinia. It’s amazing to see the professionals, fly over the water and trying it yourself is even better.
There are many surf shops where you can hire equipment, and there are surf schools at Isola dei Gabbiani as well. This is the ideal place for a holiday that’s all about nature, sport or even just relaxation! Exposed to the winds almost all year round, the Isola dei Gabbiani beach is the ideal place for windsurfers, both for beginners and experts, offering calm areas to the west and extremely windy parts to the east.
Where to stay?
Located 150m from clean, azure waters and a beautiful white sandy beach, Villa Adria is the perfect place for a relaxing, by the sea holiday where you can enjoy the beautiful sunsets with a glass of wine in your hand
6. Enjoy Cagliari and Southern Sardinia!
The southern coast of this island offers tourists a glimpse of Sardinia’s infinite variety. From the Medieval streets and tall bastions that rise above the waterfront in the island capital of Cagliari which is only a few kilometers to the ruins of the ancient city of Nora, where Phoenicians, Carthaginians, and Romans had their trading posts. Head east from the city, and in minutes you can be sunning yourself on one of the fabled beaches that makes Sardinia one of Europe’s favorite summer playgrounds. If you want to know more about the history of Sardinia –the ancient land full of mysteries– you can certainly visit the Cittadella dei Musei (Citadel of Museums) and have a walk in the heart of the city, the Castello district, entering the streets that narrate the rich history of this people.
Where to stay?
This villa (160 sq. m) is located in the South of Sardinia in a quiet part of a private complex equipped with a playground and a sport center with a club house where it is possible to reserve the tennis court, the soccer court, the basket court and the volley court during the summer season.
7. Costa Smeralda
Costa Smeralda is compared with a very expensive jewel having the world’s most beautiful beaches characterized by green and clear waters. If you’re looking for long relaxing days at the beach Costa Smeralda is the place to be! The most amazing beach is La Pelosa, near Stintino, at around 50 kilometers North of Alghero Airport. La Pelosa beach (Spiaggia della Pelosa), with its shallow turquoise waters and salty white sands, is a true Sardinian oasis and arguably one of the best beaches of Europe.
The soft white sands and the blue tranquil waters of La Pelosa gives you the feeling of a beautiful paradise. La Pelosa is also a breathtaking area, a landscape with the appearance of the kingdom of all nature, a rich world above and below the sea, pleasant and refreshing here you can spend relaxing times in the midst of the scents of the Mediterranean brush. The seawater is rich in fish, making the swims with mask and snorkel a curious and interesting discovery among the beautiful colors of the seabed.
Where to stay?
Located close to Budoni, in Olbia, Costa Smeralda. Villa Caletta boasts sea views and its own private swimming pool.
8. Maddalena Island
Apart from the beaches, the most remote of which are reached only by boat, tourists come here to cross over the causeway and bridge to the neighboring island of Caprera. What first strikes you about the town of La Maddalena is the feeling it shares with certain other historically significant Mediterranean ports, like Valletta or Mahón, of being a place of transit, its character formed as much by the contacts it has made over the centuries as by the country it happens to be attached to. Beach of Monti Dell ‘Arena (Sand Dune Hills) is characterized by crystal clear waters which will leave you breathless The beach is distinguished by an evocative dune of white sand, after which the beach is named, and by a large clear sandy shore with coarse grains surrounded by rocks.
Where to stay?
Make yourself comfortable at Villa Budoni, found on a small summit south of Budoni and easy reach from Olbia Airport. It is part of a newly constructed group of villas overlooking the beach and sea.
9. See the proof of Roman civilization at Nora or Tharros!
If you rather want to explore archaeological findings, that’s possible too. At Tharros, near Oristano in the west, or Nora, you can still see what the Romans have left behind two thousand years ago. Both sites are basically open air museums, allowing you to literally wander through ancient Roman streets, while seeing ruins, columns and thermal baths. Both Tharros and Nora are located near the sea which will offer you a very unique and idealistic image of the past.
Where to stay?
Villa Vincenzo is located on the west coast of Sardinia just north of Oristano in an idyllic location right by the sea. The villa boasts wonderful uninterrupted views from the garden and pool. The beach is a minutes’ walk and it is a mixture of sand and rocks.
10. Visit Bosa
Take some time to discover Bosa. Walk through the old streets, where modest little houses mix comfortably with grand noble homes. Surrounded by beautiful, wild countryside, stunning beaches and coastline, Bosa has retained its ancient charm along with the Sardinian identity and has not suffered the over-development of many of the island’s beach destinations. Bosa is an exceptionally delightful town of cobbled streets, piazzas, gracious palazzos with wrought iron balconies and modern amenities such as bars, cafes, restaurants, shops, a museum and art gallery – a mix of the historic and contemporary.
Where to stay?
This is a villa situated in a wonderful area for those who appreciate nature and natural environment not spoilt by tourism. There are several sporting activities for the more active holidaymakers such as kite surfing, surfing, diving, sailing.
Plan your dream holiday and choose your perfect villa or apartment! If you are looking for sea, sand, cuisine and adventure plan your next trip to Sardinia! You will have the best Italian experience!