Sardinia is often described as a small heaven in the heart of the Mediterranean. Its coasts and its candid beaches are the emblems of it, but there are numerous places and endless facets that are worth a visit. In this guest post, Italian blogger Simone would like to introduce you to the most beautiful places in Sardinia. All these places are ideal to visit both for couples or families, although some excursions could be fatiguing for young children.
Best places to visit in Sardinia
Here is a list of my preferred places in Sardinia –
Arbatax is something different, an alien place, dry, exotic and open as its sea. It seems that its name come from the Arab and means “14”, to point out the fourteen towers that dominate the promontories and that remind us the history of Sardinia, used by the main cultures of the Mediterranean, among them the Saracens.
After having crossed the inside land from Cagliari to the province of the Ogliastra, among dry and almost desert hills, the sea is what you’ll see once you arrive, a blue that loses itself to the horizon and that lays upon a coast of stones, great as the megaliths of the ancient civilizations, among palms and eucalyptuses.
Arbatax Park covers 60 hectares of Capo Bellavista, among small roads that climb and go down along the hill, a perfect walk between the white and the violet of the oleanders. The tall eucalyptuses pick up the wind and their leaves produce a rustle that you’ll hear all over the night when the sea breeze is stronger.
All it takes to reach the sea is a few footsteps; go down toward the beaches and the small inlets, where you can stay also in the warmest hours in the shade of a palm, watching the waves that slowly come from the open sea toward the rocks.
Best beaches in Sardinia
Gallura, north Sardinia
If I say Sardinia, what thought comes to your mind? To me, a fabulous sea that resembles a lot the ocean of the Caribbean islands, with the only and only difference that it is a little cold, but these are just details!
On a sunny day, I have departed for an excursion on a boat from the tourist village Marinedda, on the northwest coast of Sardinia, with destination the Red Tower harbour. Here I took a motorboat to discover the most beautiful beaches of the Gallura (some of which are visitable only by sea) to see the colours of the water that changes due to the clouds, to the backdrop, to the season.
The first beach that I have visited during the tour has been Cala Tinnari, a lonely and untouched place, and thereafter I continued to the best Sardinia beaches, Cala Serraina, Vignola, and Monti Russu. The word that unites those beaches is “wild”, in a positive sense. They are still unspoiled beaches where man has not destroyed anything.
I then continued up to the archipelago of the Maddalena! Among the most important islands of this archipelago, there are Maddalena, Budelli, Caprera and Saint Maria, that I warmly recommend you to visit. Each one has in store for you some unforgettable characteristics!
Here I have described an enchanting day articulated by the rhythm of the sea in a place surrounded by nature.
Things to do in Sardinia
I have spent one weekend in Sardinia and discovered that this big island is not only sea, even its hinterland has places rich in beauty that also deserve a visit. This is where the villages are surrounded by a veil perfumed of the past, where the pebbles of the roads have been stamped on by people who have made of their earth a source of life.
I have visited Aggius in the heart of the Gallura. It has a small inhabited centre, in which the houses are built with the granite rock. An important resource of the territory, it is specialized in the production and framework of carpets.
In the Museum Etnografico, the MEOC, there is the whole history of their traditions since 1600. Just with entering the building you seem to be catapulted in a new dimension, thanks to the perfume of the helichrysum in the air and the folklorist music of the place. You can see a “traditional house”, a representation with all the objects and the furniture, with the activities that had taken place during the day, like the preparation of wine, bread, and cheese.
Other things to see are the Nuraghe, a megalithic construction of conical form that goes back to the Bronze era (1700 B.C. around). Their main function was that of defense, but not only that, considering that during the excavations archaeologists have found utensils of daily use.
I have visited the Nuraghe Majori. Inside the building live a colony of bats that reach the nuraghe every April, where they give birth and then in October they go away again. The guide illuminated them for a quick instant, without frightening them: those little creatures made me feel really tender!
To find white and untouched beaches you don’t need to go to the Caribbean! You just have to reach South Sardinia. This part of the island has, in fact, some of the most beautiful places in Sardinia.
Perhaps it is lesser known, but the southern part of Sardinia is as beautiful, even if slightly different in comparison to the zones in the north of the island, with breathtaking beaches of white sand. In the hinterland, the landscape is constituted of mountains covered by woods and cultivation.
Cagliari is the chief town of Sardinia and is an important destination of the Mediterranean routes. This city can boast the passage of the Phoenician around the IX century B.C. and of the Romans toward the end of the II century. You can visit innumerable historical monuments such as the Patrician’s Villas and the amphitheater that in the summer hosts different cultural demonstrations.
To the east of Cagliari (about 50 km through the beautiful coastal road) is Villasimius, an old village of shepherds and fishermen, that has known significant tourist development during the 60’s. It offers a breathtaking panorama of white sand beaches and the crystalline sea. The city offers the tourists some of the most beautiful beaches in Sardinia as Porto Giunco, Punta Is Molentis, and Cala Caterina.
To the south of the Sardinian chief town, you will find Pula, a great agricultural and tourist village for all types of budgets, unlike the Coast Smeralda. Pula, other than a magnificent shore, offers also a series of attractions of cultural and archaeological interest. For example, Villa Santa Maria with its neoclassic style and the Archaeological Museum of Giovanni Patroni where are hosted some archaeological finds of the archaeological village of Nora.
Iglesias is deeply tied to the mining activity of Sardinia. The Carthaginian were the first ones to exploit these resources and subsequently, in the Middle Ages, Pisa. The city has preserved a medieval urban development, where you can visit the Cathedral of Santa Chiara, the church of San Francesco and for the interested ones, the Museum of Mineralogy and Paleontology where there are at least 8000 pieces of fossils and archaeological findings.
These are only some examples of thing you can see during your vacation in Sardinia: some sun, some sea and so many things to visit, here are the ingredients for your 2018 summer! Hope you enjoyed learning about some of the most beautiful places in Sardinia!