your OLIVER GUIDE: Craig Chiappone
Trip Type: Families or couples
IDEAL LENGTH OF TRIP: 2-3 weeks. We spent 11 nights on the south and 5 in the north.
TO & FROM
Depending upon where you’re going on Sardegna, either fly into Cagliari (south) or Porto Cervo (north/east). There are direct flights from London, Paris and other larger non-Italian European cities. Also, daily non-stops between Milan and Rome, generally on EasyJet, less than an hour of flying time. Rent a car at the airport as taxis are hard to come by.
- The South end of the Island is regarded as more beautiful and more relaxed (though admittedly we did not go to the west or northwest parts of the island). There are fewer hotels but there are many home rental options, with very few Americans. Rent a house via airbnb near/on Simius Beach in Villasimius. We rented one associated with a hotel so we had maid service and could use the hotel facilities.
- The North, specifically the Costa Smeralda, is extremely chic, (think yachts and plastic surgery). Here you will find more Americans and generally a more touristy feel. Stay a few days on the north-east end called Costa Smeralda (Emerald Coast) in an upscale hotel.
- Both the North and the South are beautiful, begin in one end and drive to the other. Takes 3-4 hours (though there are several small hotels to stay mid-island) and you get to see the highlands and wooded forests which are unique and stunning.
EAT & DRINK
- The food is amazing, especially the fish, seafood pastas & deserts.
- Try the local cheeses and wines -- also amazing and different.
- Make sure to try Malloreddus (pasta) and Seadas (desert).
- Da Barbara is the best restaurant in the South (maybe the whole island).
- Other restaurants in the South:
- Ristorante Sa Morisca (Pizzeria)
- Ristorante Su Forreddu
- Ristoante Il Miraggio
- There are beach clubs throughout the island which offer bar/restaurants and more upscale private day-beds.
- Take a boat for a day to La Maddelana Archipelago on the north end of the island.
- Water skiing and wake boarding (in the north)
- Take a drive to some of the ruins; Sardegna is home to Europe’s oldest civilization (predates the Etruscans).
- The beaches are sprinkled with “Ombrelloni” or large beach umbrellas with beach 2-3 chairs which you rent from the lifeguard on a daily/weekly basis. Unless you’re at a hotel, your rental will likely not come with a pre-arranged Ombrelloni so you will need to work it out upon arrival at the beach.
- Don’t go in early June as the water temp is still chilly. It rises fast beginning mid June and becomes very warm throughout October. August is very crowded.