The Top Seven Most Beautiful Beaches in Sardinia
Separated by an electric glow from the mesmerizing turquoise sea water, both a piece of Italy and standing uniquely alone, Sardinia is its own magical and exotic world. This beautiful island is a tropical paradise with an Italian twist. All at once it feels like the gorgeous coastline of southern Italy, the lush beaches of the Caribbean, as well as the rich colorfulness of northern African countries like Morocco.
Of course, many Italian cultural values, such as the emphasis on fresh, handmade food and the importance of family and community are upheld here, making it explicitly Italian. However the beaches will transform your typical Italian experience into a divinely relaxing and absolutely breathe-taking one.
Sardinians hold onto their traditions and are immensely proud of life on their incredible island. They speak their own language, Sardinian or ‘Sard’ which of all the romance languages is considered the closest to Latin. They have their own heavenly cuisine which has been influenced by the Italian mainland as well as the neighboring continents, but mostly by the magnificent land and sea that they call home.
As one of the geographically oldest pieces of land, Sardinia’s fascinating history is full of different inhabitants, invasions, and evolving eras. This lengthy history and large size, Sardinia is the second biggest island in the Mediterranean Sea, leaves the island shrouded in mystery to the outside world.
|Turquoise Sea – Sardinia|
The expansive coastline also means Sardinia has hundreds of beautiful beaches or ‘spiagge’ to choose from. They are constantly being written about and awarded top beach titles. From impeccable beaches with bright white sand to more rugged coves lined with steep rocky cliffs and sea caves, and others which are also wild, but softer, caressed by rolling sand dunes and desert shrubbery, there is a spot for every type of beachgoer. All of them have the brightest, clearest blue water you have ever seen and the most perfect summer sun.
When thinking of planning a trip to Sardinia, most travelers are unaware of the range of beaches available to them because of the popularity of Costa Smeralda, a well-known area in the northeast with stylish luxurious resorts and exquisite private beaches. For the last several decades the towns of Porta Cervo and Porta Rotondo have been developed to offer exclusive yachting, golfing, and fine dining beach vacations. Although the beaches are absolutely captivating, it is undeniable that these types of high-end vacations will be expensive.
|Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, Porto Cervo|
Fortunately, there are many other beach options for the perfect summer holiday in Sardinia. In contrast to the north, the south which contains the capital city of Cagliari, provides a more genuine Sardinian experience. The south also boasts spectacularly beautiful beaches with shining white sand and shimmering blue water, but without the resort prices. These are easily accessible to travelers and families who can join the locals on the sand and in the sea.
On the east coast, many beaches have white sand that is delightfully interrupted by cragged rocks and wild bluffs. Sometimes there are remains of ancient structures to explore. The west contains some stunning secluded beaches with impressive sand dunes. Visit more than one and let your adventurous spirit be captured by the enchanting shores of authentic Sardinia.
Spiaggia del Poetto di Cagliari
Spiaggia del Poetto is a breath taking eight kilometer strip of beach with mostly flat white sand and crystal clear blue water. As Cagliari’s main beach, it is an easy twenty minute bus ride from the capital city’s ‘Piazza Matteotti.’
From the beach, you can see the lovely hills ‘Sella del Diavolo’ to the south. There are two ponds, ‘Stagno di Molentargius’ and ‘Stagno di Quartu,’ where you can watch flamingos bask in the sun.
Restaurants, bars, and stands line the sand allowing for a full day of sun and sea as well as either a relaxing evening or a lively summer night full of dancing. There are many places to rent equipment, such as canoes, kayaks, and kite boards for various water sports. Runners, cyclists, and roller skaters can enjoy views of the sea from the nearby concrete coastal path.
Spiaggia di Porto Giunco
|Spiaggia di Porto Giunco|
East of Cagliari is Spiaggia di Porto Giunco in the Villasimius area of Sardinia. Villasimius is exploding with outstanding beaches, including the next one on this list.
Porto Giunco is a blissful oasis for beach goers with warm white sand and dazzlingly clear blue water. It is very popular for snorkeling and diving. There is also a pond, ‘Stagno di Notteri,’ here that attracts flamingos and other wildlife.
The beach is surrounded by sweet smelling Eucalyptus trees and overlooked by an ancient tower, ‘Torre di Porto Giunco’ which was built to spot invaders or pirates in 1578 when the Spanish controlled Sardinia. If you fancy a challenge, hike up to the tower and pretend you are the island’s southern protector.
Spiaggia di Punta Molentis
|Punta Molentis In Sardinia|
Another Villasimius beach, Spiaggia di Punta Molentis also has pristine white sand and a transparent, turquoise sea. However, this stunning crescent shaped beach’s white sand is also dotted with pink stones. The land is very thin and on the other side the pink white sand is replaced with large slabs of granite. Years ago, this was a quarry and the stones were extracted by donkeys called the ‘sumolenti.’
The two opposing sides create a stark contrast for each other and yet add to the beauty. They are flanked by tall cliffs, some up to fifteen meters high, and mesmerizing hills full of mediterranean plants and cacti. Behind these hills are the ruins of ‘Nuraghe di Punta Molentis,’ an ancient stone tower built sometime in the bronze or iron ages.
The beach is comfortably sheltered from the wind, the sea is perfect for swimming, and you can rent umbrellas, deck chairs, and other necessities. Stay for sunset, because sometimes the sand’s pink pieces are illuminated and the beach glows with rose-like hues.
Spiaggia di Cala Luna
|Splendid Cala Luna Beach|
Further north, on the east shore of the Gulf of Orosei which is dripping with jaw-dropping scenery, is the elusive Spiaggia di Cala Luna. It literally translates to ‘moon cove beach’ which is perfect because it is crescent shaped.
Walled by sheer cliff faces, it is a rock climbers paradise. Hidden in a cove with clear, calm turquoise water, it is ideal for snorkeling and scuba diving. The ‘Grottes du Bue Marino,’ sea caves with impressively large stalagmites, stalactites, and striking rock formations, are only three kilometers away.
This beach is primarily for adventure lovers and the able bodied as it is only accessible by foot of by boat. You can access Cala Luna by hiking four kilometers from another cove, ‘Cala Fuili’ or by taking a boat from the marina at ‘Cala Gonone.’
Spiaggia di Nora
|Ancient Ruins of Nora|
Southwest of Cagliari in the historically important Pula area, which was first settled by the Phoenicians between the 9th and 8th century BC, is Spiaggia di Nora. Adorned with ancient ruins from the Phoenicians and Punics, which were later built over by the Romans, behind the beach and sheltered by a stunning four hundred year old tower called ‘Torre del Coltellazzo,’ this beach is a history lovers favorite.
It is also loved by Sardinians and visitors for the impressive cliffs faces, wondrous rocks overflowing with natural vegetation, white pebbled sand, and shining, clear blue water. The shallow sea makes it a perfect place to swim, snorkel, and relax.
The beach is easily accessible and you can stroll along the water as well as into the town for refreshments and to experience some local flavor. On the beach, the church of Sant’Efisio was built and every year in May it is an important site ‘Festa di Sant’Efisio,’ a four day religious celebration.
Spiaggia di Piscinas
|Golden Sands In Sardinia|
On Sardinia’s west side on the famous ‘Costa Verde’ or the ‘Green Coast’ is one of the most secluded and loveliest natural beaches in Sardinia. The warm sand and turquoise sea sculpted by the wind make this beach preciously wild.
The sand is golden and any flatness is idyllically interrupted by large majestic sand dunes dotted with grasses and shrubs. Olive trees naturally springs up on the dunes sometimes. The epic dunes can get up to sixty meters high.
This beach definitely caters to the able-bodied and adventurous. To get to the beach, there is a nine kilometer dirt road that comes from the highway. Close to the shore rests an old shipwreck which provides an amazing experience for scuba divers.
Spiaggia la Marinedda
|Spiaggia la Marinedda|
One of the nicest beaches in the north of Sardinia, away from the luxurious resorts of Porta Cervo and Porta Rotondo, is Spiaggia la Marinedda. It is a little over one kilometer away from the popular beaches of ‘Isola Rossa.’
It is another beach ideal for swimming and snorkeling with transparent, calm blue water. The white sand is juxtaposed by varying greens from native desert plants and deep reds from the granite rocks that are scattered throughout the beach. These rocks are what gave ‘Isola Rossa’ or ‘Red Island’ its name. To the west, you can see the impressive red granite cliffs called ‘Punta Canneddi.’
This beach attracts surfers and every August an international surf competition is held here. Canoes and paddle boats can be rented and there are some nearby cafes to grab a simple bite to eat.