Where to go in Sardinia

Post by Enrico

To explore Sardinia in depth are necessary many trips and longer stays, so I recommend a series of itineraries based on personal preferences to those who want to know what to see in Sardinia, the second largest island in the Mediterranean.

Thanks to the cooperation of Resort Le Dune staff, a hotel in Badesi Marina featuring many activities for travellers, I have compiled a list of special places that effectively express the uniqueness of this island.

This itinerary focuses on Gallura, the north-eastern area of the island, because in my opinion is one of the most interesting destinations for tourists, due to the coastal landscape, the thick cork oak forests, the typical granite rocks smoothed by the wind and the unique in the world archaeological sites.

Discovering stazzu rural country houses

Credits: https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Stazzo.JPG licenza GFDL

Credits: https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Stazzo.JPG licenza GFDL

What is a “stazzu”? The name derives from the Latin “statio” which means “station” or “stopover point” and refers to a typical rural country house in Gallura where farmers are used to live. These rectangular buildings are spread in the north-eastern area of the island and are an evidence of the importance of farmer’s tradition until Sixties, when started the development of Costa Smeralda tourist urbanisation.

Now some stazzi were restored such as the building in the picture, you can see these country houses in the surroundings of Santa Teresa di Gallura and Arzachena.

Giants’ Tomb in Arzachena

By © Michel Royon /(Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

By © Michel Royon /(Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Arzachena is popular especially for Costa Smeralda, the coastline that stretches for about 20 km and is defined by many small beaches and coves, once the favorite haunt by the international jet set. One of the things that struck me most of Sardinia is its dual identity: many VIPs like this island, and at the same time there are some areas known only by travellers who like history and ecotourism.

At about ten kilometers from the Gulf of Arzachena stands the Giants’ Tomb Coddu Vecchiu, a monument built entirely of granite rock and dating back to 2500 B.C. This grave remained largely intact over the centuries and is one of the most impressive finds of the Nuragic era, during which spread these typical megalithic edifices called Nuraghe, the symbol of Sardinia.

There are other tombs of the giants in the island, but Coddu Vecchiu is a mystery because we don’t know the rituals and the ceremonies that occurred there.

Nuraghe Majori in Tempio Pausania

Tempio Nuraghe Majori: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tempio_Nuraghe_Majori.jpg

Tempio Nuraghe Majori: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tempio_Nuraghe_Majori.jpg

I suggest this destination to those who come for the first time in Gallura: reach Tempio Pausania and from there head to the Nuraghe Majori, located in a panoramic position and surrounded by a forest of cork, oak, ash and alder.

This nuraghe owes its name to the large size of the blocks used to build it and is accessible inside. Going upstairs from the staircase I could see Mount Limbara and Aggius, two places that disclose the charm of Gallura. Mount Limbara, in fact, is the mountain massif preferred by those who practice hiking and free climbing, while Aggius is a town tied to traditions and the treasures of Sardinia.

 

Aggius is part of the area where is produced Vermentino di Gallura (the best DOCG white wine of the region) and is characterized by the spectacular landscape of Piana dei Grandi Sassi, where granite boulders have been rounded by erosion, as if they were the work of a bizarre artist.

Piana dei sassi: By Vera Buhl (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

Piana dei sassi: By Vera Buhl (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

Thanks to the guided tour to the Nuraghe Majori I could learn more about these mysterious monuments which were dedicated numerous studies by archaeological experts.

To book a tour, you can call the phone number +39 347 2995933.

The hidden beach on the Gulf of Cugnana

Golfo di Cugnana By No machine-readable author provided. Shardan assumed (based on copyright claims). [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC BY 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons

Golfo di Cugnana By No machine-readable author provided. Shardan assumed (based on copyright claims). [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC BY 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons

Gallura is also a land of hidden jewels such as the Gulf of Cugnana, at the foot of Cugnana granite massif and sheltered from the winds that are a peculiarity of this area.

The secluded beach of Marina di Cugnana is not extensive, but thanks to the crystal clear waters and lush vegetation can be defined a natural paradise where is nice to get lost. Here you’ll feel the sensation of being in a place out of the ordinary, and, above all, far from the crowd.

Marina di Cugnana on Sardinia tourism official website.

My wish is to return soon in Sardinia to see the places that I didn’t reach following this itinerary; I hope that this guide is useful to who doesn’t know this magical island with thousand-year old history.

Post by Enrico

About

Award-winning writer and solo female travel blogger on a mission to explore the world through deeper travel. Lover of fun, adventure, food, Harry Potter, hiking, beaches, and chatting about the weather. Can be bought with cake.

2 Comments

  1. AndysWorldJourneys

    Thanks! great post about a place I know, well, pretty much nothing about. Until today. :)

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