As the Med’s second largest and most remote island, Sardinia offers diverse landscapes. As you might expect, the island has a spectacular coastline – 1800 kms of it in fact offering everything from dazzling white sweeps of sand to hidden coves and sparkling emerald seas.
The Costa Smeralda, or Emerald Coast is perhaps the best known stretch
Porto Cervo is the heart of the Costa Smeralda and its here that the Aga Khan started his dream back in the sixties to build a perfect Mediterranean resort. At times its really ostentatious but the thing about the Costa Smeralda is that its really understated elegant as well.
Port Cervo is certainly fun to visit for a glimpse of how the other half live but there are lots of places to stay right along the Costa Smeralda and indeed the whole of the North Coast. I looked at several styles of hotel
The small and intimate Hotel Capo D’Orso… the family orientated Cala di Lepre... and the resort style Valle dell’Erica
On the shoe, what we've found here is really distinctive character places. You've got none of the big high rise that, you know, block out the sun by 3 o clock. Its all very restrained on the whole and its been very well managed I think. The star rating can give some indication but what you really need is that insider knowledge and that's where a specialist like Just Sradinia really come in to its own - they can ask the right questions of you to match the holiday to the right person
Wherever you stay, there are lots of different ways to enjoy the coast and that stunning emerald water. There are all sorts of boat trips out to the islands and of course sailing is huge here…
Another option is to hire a RIB, you can either drive one yourself, after some quick instruction if needed, or you can hire a driver
The Costa Smeralda is all about exclusivity and you don't get much more exclusive than this - a whole beach to yourself. You've got every gradation of blue out there and its crystal clear, perfect temperature, fantastic
As if the attractions of its coastline weren’t enough, rural Sardinia also has much to offer and I’d certainly consider spending at least a couple of days exploring the interior. I headed to Su Gologone set in the mountainous interior just an hour’s drive south of Olbia
Su Gologone is a really good example of rural tourism at its best. This guy started this 40 odd years ago and its a real hymn to the countryside. You've got all these great little secret nooks and crannies where you can disappear so you that feeling of a real escape which is what the countryside should be.
Aside from relaxing at the hotel, locally there are plenty of activities on offer such as kayaking, cycling and of course great walking…
There’s history here too – this is an example of a Nuraghi settlement
Last but not least, we took a look at the North East coast from our base at the Carlos V hotel in Alghero.
Increasingly popular due to regular low cost flights and the short 20 minute transfer from the airport, Alghero is a working town with more of a traditional feel.
You can see why Alghero is such a good base for a holiday. You've got these endless powder sands stretching along the lido, then you've got the swish Marina and, over here, we've got the medieval heart of the town which is really interesting. Catalan from Spain.
The season for Sardinia is quite defined from May to early October – you can come here in winter of course but in the warm summer sunshine the island really comes into its own
I'd only actually been to the south of Sardinia and then I was very impressed but the north even knocks spots off that. I mean its such a sensational coastline. Finely fretted bays, beautiful coves, wonderful food and the interior is really really interesting. I think the fact that its just a two hour flight from Britain means its got to be one of the best Med destinations.
A hidden gem in the Med, the beautiful island of Sardinia has much to offer from its stunning coastline to the rugged mountainous interior. Renowned for its Italian style and flair, accommodation choices range from simple apartments to 5 star luxury hotels.
Sardinia’s coastline is truly stunning. With hundreds of beaches, rocky coves and bays you really are spoilt for choice and, even in high season, its always possible to escape the crowds. As a contrast to sea and sand, a detour to the interior of the island is highly recommended where there are some wonderful rural hotels to discover.
The quality of accommodation, food and service generally are all excellent and there’s an air of understated elegance about the place. Development is tightly controlled – no high rises here – the hotels are extremely stylish, making the most of their natural environments. Low cost flights into both Olbia and Alghero make this whole area much more accessible and affordable than in the past.
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