Sardinia offers you everything you want in a holiday. From its white sand beaches and crystal clear waters, to it’s rugged hillside olive groves and tiny medieval villages there really is something for everyone. So when it comes to planning your week away the only problem is deciding where to start.
Sardinia is too big to see in a single week. And as most flights and ferries arrive in Olbia, this itinerary offers an exploration of the northern half of the island. The week’s trip is circular so if you’re flying into Alghero you can simply start from Day 3 and work your way around.
Pass through Olbia – the entrance point to the Costa Smeralda – and head straight for Porto Cervo. Here you can spend the day shopping and fine dining as a kick-start to your holiday. And don’t forget the obligatory evening stroll around the two yacht harbours.
Head to Palau, where you can get a boat to take you around the Maddalena Archipelago. Land on one of the larger islands and take a tour, or simply find a deserted cove where you can while away your day.
As a change of pace from the high-end Porto Cervo, why not spend the night at the Acapulco campsite in Palau. Enjoy spectacular scenery from one of their beach-side cabins. And don’t miss Da Robertino – a local restaurant that serves the best grilled seafood platter on the island.
Get up early and head to Alghero on the north-east coast. Take a boat-trip to the Grotto di Nettuno at Capo Caccia for some beautiful coastal scenery and incredible underground lakes and sea caves.
Spend the afternoon strolling around Alghero’s old town before tucking into the local speciality of grilled lobster in one of the port-side restaurants.
After all that work it’s time to go to the out of town beach, Il Bombarde, to enjoy a truly tropical retreat. Then, back in Alghero, hit Poco Loco for dinner where you can order pizza by the metre (al metro) and fantastic mussels alla marinara.
Move south down the coast to Tharros, a Phoenician city dating back to 730 BC. The journey from Alghero is an experience in itself, but you haven’t seen anything until you arrive at these ruins on the Capo San Marco.
Lone columns and relics of antique buildings are close enough to touch the sea as they sit on a spit of land that falls away into turquoise waters. It is simply breathtaking.
Days 6 and 7
Head inland into the old-Sardinia. Spend two days exploring mountain hamlets such as Burgos with its hilltop castle ruins or Tonara, the home of nougat.
Make a stop in the city of Nuoro to learn more about the history of the region and sample some local speciality foods. Then make the trip to Tiscali, a traditional nuraghic settlement hiding in the depths of a mountain chasm, only discovered around a century ago.
Now it’s time to make your way home. But don’t worry – on the way you can start planning your next week’s holiday to discover the south of Sardinia.
Luke writes for Charming Sardinia who offer tailor made holidays to Sardinia and have a wide range of luxury hotels and luxury villas for Mediterranean breaks.