Beautiful bays and beaches, ancient castles and delicious wines, are just a few of the delights of Italy’s sumptuous island. In our latest travel info post, Italo Rizzo reveals his selected highlights…
If Sardinia is for you a typical summer destination and a mysterious place of unknown origins, this guide should prove very useful to you in revealing the great attractions of the second largest island in the Mediterranean Sea.
Are you ready for a journey through wild nature, stunning archaeological finds, ancient traditions and tasty local products? Good… then you’re ready to fall in love with Sardinia!
Cala Girgolu, a corner of Heaven near Olbia
The first stage of our virtual trip takes us to Northern Sardinia, near Olbia, a town easily reachable by airplane from Italy and other countries. Cala Girgolu is one of the most lauded beaches in Italy, a cove surrounded by juniper trees and pink granite rocks. The ochre sand and pebbles is the backdrop of an enchanting beach, and here you can see the famous small Tortoise bay (Cala della Tartaruga) – so-called because there stands a rock, sculpted by the sea and the wind, that is similar to a tortoise.
Cala Girgolu is recommended for trekking and for a solitary dive into the amazing blue sea: Sardinia is at the same time a popular destination for beach lovers and eco-travellers.
Many of the island’s coves and beaches have two different names, so if you read something about Sassi Piatti, this is the name given by people from the mainland to Cala Girgolu!
The bizarre shapes of rocks inspired this name, but please remember to call all the places you’ll visit here with their proper name as the Sardinians are a very proud people!
Many tourists don’t know that Sardinia is also a land of castles, remnants of the Middle Ages in an island where beauty is eternal. One of these ancient fortresses is Pedres Castle, located in the south of Olbia and built between 1296 and 1322 by the Visconti family to protect the surrounding area.
The Castle rises on a hilltop, a strategical position to prevent invasions, although these days some of the walls are missing due to damages and air raids during World War II.
To visit the ruins of Pedres Castle, follow the trail at the base of the hill and the staircase, recently restored, to reach the top of the fortress and enjoy a wonderful view of Northern Sardinia, from the sea to the town of Olbia. The association ArcheOlbia manages this archaeological site, which is open to the public every day from 11:00 am to 7:00 pm; don’t miss the chance to explore one of the highlights of Medieval Sardinia.
Tavolara Paddle Festival
Going to Sardinia is a nice choice if you like water sports: a lot of beach resorts offer kitesurfing, waterboarding and canoeing with expert instructors, an opportunity to play sports and free the mind and body from the hectic pace of everyday life. The Tavolara Paddle Festival, which usually takes place at Porto Taverna in September, combines two aspects of an interesting event: an excursion by kayak including a guided tour of Tavolara Island on the first day, and the international canoeing competition on the second day.
The first day is open to everyone and allows you to discover the marine protected area of Tavolara; here the environment is still intact and this is an important remind for travellers, because nature always claims love and respect.
The second day is one of the main competitions for canoeing: the last editions had the champions Francesco Gambella and Daniele Scarpa as ambassadors.
Tenute Olbios, top vineyards in Sardinia
The wine-producing tradition of Sardinia is less known compared to other Italian regions such as Tuscany and Veneto, nevertheless this island boasts DOCG wines such as Vermentino di Gallura.
If you are planning a trip to Gallura, the most renowned Northern area of Sardinia, remember to do a wine tour in a prestigious vineyard close to the aforementioned Island of Tavolara and Pedres Castle, Tenute Olbios.
The name Olbios means prosperous land and you’ll be amazed by the passion and the attention to details of these winemakers, who made Tenute Olbios a landmark for high quality wines production. It’s possible to book a tour of Olbios Estate and taste the best vintages of Vermentino at the Sampling Room, where you will discover a buried cellar used for ageing wines.
Enjoy the Sardinian flavours and soon you’ll understand why this island is an unrivalled setting for fulfilling your desires.
The local staff of Lu Nibareddu, a Residence Hotel village in Sardinia, suggested to me many of the stages of this itinerary. They know the island very well if you are looking to experience its authentic treasures… I’ll leave you with a view of their lovely swimming pool!