Sardinia, Italy

By | December 15, 2022

According to acronymmonster, Sardinia is located 200 km west of mainland Italy and only 12 km south of French Corsica. This is a place where you can combine a wonderful beach holiday with interesting sightseeing trips: most of the island is occupied by natural and archaeological reserves. And its southern coast is famous for its long sandy beaches, palm and pine groves, calm and clear sea. And, importantly, comfortable hotels.

Sardinia is the quintessence of Mediterranean beauty and is adored by lovers of swimming, boating, windsurfing, hiking, rock climbing and hiking. In the warmest month (in August), the coastal areas are literally clogged with them. At the same time, the inner life of the island in parts remote from tourist resorts is very interesting and original. After all, it is an autonomous island. Officially, it belongs to Italy, but don’t try to declare it in front of the Sardis, who consider themselves a special people. And the stone monuments of the Nuragic civilization of 1500 BC. e. testify that the inhabitants of Sardinia overtook the Etruscans for several centuries in what is now mainland Italy.

The main resorts of Sardinia

Capital — Cagliari.

The southern coast is famous for its endless sandy beaches, palm and pine groves, calm and clear sea. The famous hotel complex Forte Village is located in the Santa Margherita di Pula area. Villasimius, located nearby (40 km from Cagliari), is of interest to divers: not far from the coast, 4 sunken ships lie there, there are also underwater reefs. There is an aqua park and a golf club 20 km from Villasimius towards Cagliari.

Costa Smeralda, stretching for 55 km along the northeast coast of the island, is a center of elite tourism with excellent sandy beaches, quiet bays and spectacular mountain ranges. Here are the famous Sottovento disco club, the Sopravento Club disco – a popular institution for those over 40, the American pub Portico and Porto Rotondo Country Club – a very trendy institution, a cross between a music night bar, a restaurant and a disco.

On the northwestern coast of the island of Sardinia, two more resorts stand out that are worthy of attention: this is the picturesque Stintino and the quiet and cozy Costa Paradiso.

Diving in Sardinia

The underwater part of Sardinia is no less attractive than the surface. Turquoise clear water, comfortable temperatures, an abundance of marine life, bizarre underwater terrain, ships lying at the bottom and first-class diving centers have made Sardinia a popular diving destination.

The protected Coral Riviera is known for its abundance of crustacean-occupied red corals and the mesmerizing worlds of Ghost Cave and Galatea Cave. Wreck diving fans are attracted by the southern coast in the Cagliari region, where ships lie at the bottom that sank during a storm or became a victim of the English fleet. The richest underwater flora and fauna is in the La Maddalena National Park. Here, among the stone boulders overgrown with red gorgonians, flocks of barracudas circle, huge tunas swim lazily, and stone perches and groupers hide in crevices.

The cost of one dive with insurance and delivery back and forth on a rubber boat is 45/35/30 EUR for one person / group of 2-9 people / group of 10-14 people. Rent of a full set of diving equipment – 30 EUR / day.

In the diving centers, you can take a course to obtain an initial PADI Scuba Diver certificate (300 EUR) or a more advanced Open Water Diver (350 EUR), which gives you the right to dive independently. Experienced divers can upgrade their skills to Adventures (200 EUR) or Rescue Diver (300 EUR).

To see the underwater world of Sardinia, it is not necessary to dive with scuba diving. There are many snorkeling spots that are easily accessible by boat. The cost of a 5-hour tour is 40 EUR /person.

Spa and thalassotherapy

Sardinia is known for its high quality thalassotherapy centers with unique programs and world-class specialists. The AcquaForte Thalass&Spa beauty and health center in the Forte Village resort specializes in a healing technique based on swimming in pools with different temperatures and different degrees of salinity.

The first pool contains the so-called “sea oil” – natural sea water with a high content of magnesium salts, which in its consistency really resembles oil. The second is enriched with extracts from aloe and mint, making the skin silky and stimulating the production of endorphins. In the 3rd and 4th, unique hydromassages with hot sea water are used. Bathing in the cooler pools 5 and 6 completes this highly beneficial treatment that speeds up metabolism and drainage processes, optimizes ion exchanges and releases toxins.

No less pleasant and useful are the spa programs at The Pelican Beach Resort & Spa, which include various types of water massage, shiatsu and pressotherapy, combined with special diets and gymnastics to burn calories and cleanse the body. Moreover, for all the uniqueness, the prices for the most popular procedures are not too high and are available not only to wealthy clients.

What to bring

As in any resort in the country, the island has boutiques of all the most famous Italian brands: Gucci, Prada, Armani, Dolce & Gabbana. Most of them are concentrated in the fashionable Porto Cervo and the main Sardinian city of Cagliari. You can buy branded items with a 50-70% discount at the Luxury Mall Italy in Olbia and at the Sardinia Outlet Village in Sestu in the south of the island.

Winter discounts in stores begin on January 7, summer – in early July.

It is worth going to the mountainous Barbagia for shepherd’s knives with a handle made of mouflon horn and a leaf-shaped blade, the secret of sharpening of which has been passed down from generation to generation. Medieval Alghero is famous for its red coral jewelry. They are mined here, in the sea off the coast of the Coral Riviera. Particularly beautiful are the gold and silver items made using the filigree sard technique. Textiles with traditional hand embroidery are sold throughout Sardinia – blouses, shawls, tablecloths, bedspreads and very expensive Sardinian sheep wool carpets.

In addition, olive oil, the famous myrtle liqueur Mirto di mirto and wonderful cheeses are brought from Sardinia: hard Pecorino, soft Dolce Sardo and the most delicate provoletta with a creamy taste in the shape of a pear.

Cuisine and restaurants in Sardinia

Sardinian cuisine is simple, like all ingenious. On any table there will certainly be thin yeast-free cakes, which are called “music paper” for their light crunch. If you put scrambled eggs on it and season with grated sheep’s cheese, you get the traditional Sardinian dish “pane fratau”. Sardinian fregola pasta, resembling small balls, goes well with stewed beef, roasted pig with spices, mushrooms and vegetables.

Despite the fact that Sardis have always been, first of all, shepherds and only then fishermen, they also know how to cook fish and seafood. What are worth though “bottarga” – dried mullet caviar or sauce “la scorpetta del marino” (“sailor’s slipper”), suitable for pasta “lorigitos” in the form of rings of twisted strips of dough. Vegetarians can choose “culurjones” – ravioli with potatoes and “pecorino” cheese, and those with a sweet tooth can choose round “seadas” patties poured with honey with tender cheese inside.

It is worth thinking carefully before tasting casu marzu cheese, but the sardines themselves adore this specialty with live cheese fly larvae.

They not only love to feed guests on the island, but they also know how. Of course, on the Costa Smeralda, chosen by the beau monde, in Alghero and Cagliari there are enough pretentious restaurants that meet the needs and wallets of people who have lost count of money. But even more simply good food – meat and fish, with quite reasonable prices: from inexpensive restaurants and pizzerias to trattorias with traditional home cooking, alien to newfangled gastronomic trends. There are many of them not only in resort areas, but also in the interior of the island.

Dinner in a good restaurant with wine – 55 EUR per person, lunch in a small trattoria with local cuisine – 20 EUR, focaccia and panini with various fillings, sold in bakeries and street stalls, are suitable for a snack on the go.

Sardinia, Italy