If you have planned to vist Sardinia from Cagliari to Olbia, you must consider that its coast is full of attractions: historical towns overlooking the sea, some of the most beautiful beaches in the island, the natural paradises of Ogliastra area, the charm of the Emerald Coast and Porto Cervo. A few weeks ago, we wrote about the best things to see and do from Alghero to Olbia. In this article, we continue our journey to Cagliari (or vice versa) through 10 unmissable stages.
Before leaving: how to get to Cagliari and Olbia
Cagliari and Olbia host both port and airport. Cagliari-Elmas Airport is just 6 km from the city. It is connected to the major Italian and European cities through numerous seasonal and annual routes with flights operated by national company and low cost airlines. In Olbia thanks to Costa Smeralda Airport and Eccelsa, the private air terminal, you can reach the island in 2/3 hours from European capitals and the rest of Italy. The port of Cagliari welcomes ferries from Civitavecchia, Naples, and Palermo. Olbia also guarantees routes with Livorno and Genoa. Finally, Cagliari and Olbia are connected by SS 125, better known as Orientale Sarda. It is one of the main roads in Sardinia, much loved by bikers for its panoramic bends.
Visit Sardinia along the east coast in 10 stages
1. Sights in Cagliari
The most important city of Sardinia is so rich with historical, cultural, archaeological, natural and enogastronomic attractions, that it deserves a single article (or you can download a city guide of Cagliari on Guide Me Right). Even the beaches near Cagliari need to be visited. Especially Mari Pintau at Quartu Sant’Elena. The beach is famous for the colour of sea bottom. Its sand is both fine and with granite pebbles that give water many shades. Therefore, if you want to enjoy Cagliari in the best way, you need at least 2 days to:
- visit Castello, the most famous area of the city with its ramparts;
- take part in an excursion along the Sella del Diavolo, a natural promontory with stunning views of the Gulf;
- go up to the top of the Elephant Tower and have a walk along the streets of the old town;
- admire the splendid Roman amphitheater;
- enjoy an excellent seafood dinner in the historic Marina district, once inhabited by fishermen.
In Villasimius there are some of the most beautiful andfamous beaches in southern Sardinia. We recommend: Punta Molentis, a white and fine sandy stretch protected by a charming hill with a small nuraghe; Porto Giunco, where the scenery is made unique by a pond populated by pink flamingos; the Rice Beach near the town centre.
The wonderful beaches of southeast Sardinia
3. The sandy coast of Castiadas
Also Castiadas territory hosts some dreamy seaside resorts. Cala Pira is unmistakable due to a tower immersed in the Mediterranean scrub and its pink sand. Cala Sinzias is the most famous beach, ideals for families with children for the sandy bottom that degrades gently, scented by white lilies that bloom on nearby dunes.
4. Muravera e Costa Rei
Absolutely to visit in Sardinia the coastline between Muravera and Castiadas, a stretch of low coast that extends over 10 km. There you can admire the renowned Costa Rei. In 2009, Lonely Planet, the prestigious publishing house specializing in travel guides, has included it in the 10 most beautiful beaches in the world. Actually, Costa Rei is not a beach but a succession of sand strips, all beautiful: from the rock of Peppino, the symbol of the area, to the Iba de Ziu Franciscu. Along the rest of the coastal stretch included in Muravera territory, we recommend: the coves of Porto de S’Illixi and Cala Su Figu near Capo Ferrato promontory, and the 2 km of bronze-colored sand at Feraxi.
The eastern coast of central Sardinia
5. The most beautiful Sardinian coves between Orosei and Baunei
We have arrived in the centre of Sardinia, about halfway between Cagliari and Olbia. The typical sandy coast of the south east of the island finishes to leave room for impressive cliffs immersed in the Mediterranean scrub that overlook the sea. Here you can find the most famous coves in the island. In south part, there are Cala Luna, Cala Sisine, Cala Mariolu and Cala Goloritzé. You must take part in a boat trip to discover these beautiful bays that are so hard to reach on foot. Thanks to this fact, this stretch of coast still offers uncontaminated wild scenery. The more you go north, the more massive limestone rocks begin to decrease and turn into the soft dunes of Capo Comino, in Siniscola. Along Orosei coast, you can visit some stunning beaches easily reachable even by car: Bidderosa, Cala Ginepro, Cala Liberotto and Cala Fuili.
6. A stop in Cala Gonone
Have a break in Cala Gonone! In this well known tourist resort, you will find ferries to visit the beautiful grotto of Bue Marino, which from the coast penetrates the rock for 15 km. The town is also renowned for its seafood restaurants. If you have children, you can visit the aquarium of Cala Gonone, which, in addition to the Mediterranean Sea species, hosts a section dedicated to tropical seas.
7. The paradise for hikers in Dorgali
We leave the coast to visit Sardinia in its centre. Dorgali is a village with a huge territory in the heart of the natural park of the Gulf of Orosei and Gennargentu. It is a popular destination for hikers, mountain bikers and free climbing lovers. A real paradise for excursionists, with extraordinary itineraries along rocky trails that suddenly open to the sea giving breathtaking scenery. Ispinigoli cave, part of the town of Dorgali, houses the highest stalagmite stalactite in Europe. You should also visit the Nuragico-Roman village of Tiscali, hidden among the karstic walls of Supramonte between Oliena and Dorgali.
North East Sardinia up to Olbia
8. San Teodoro and Puntaldia residential complex
We finally reach Gallura and San Teodoro. Here there are some of the most wonderful beaches in northern Sardinia: La Cinta, Isuledda, Cala Brandinchi. Over the years, the town has been equipped to become one of Sardinian best equipped tourist destinations. San Teodoro is perfect for sports lovers. It has facilities for tennis, soccer, and golf. Its long white beaches are ideal for beach volleyball and water sports. Just a few kilometers away from the coast you can discover suggestive hiking trails for bikers and nature lovers. There is also the Puntaldia residential complex, where Immobilsarda recently opened a real estate office. The village of Puntaldia offers prestigious properties for sale with exclusive comforts and several services for residents such as a tourist marina with over 400 berths.
9. The natural park of Tavolara
Once in San Teodoro, you will notice Tavolara and Molara in the background. These two islands invade the horizon creating a wonderful panorama with their unmistakable profile. The legendary island of Tavolara is part of the protected marine area of Tavolara and Capo Coda Cavallo. It is a stretch of coast of great naturalistic value. These islands can be reached by boat. Do not give up on a day trip on the island during which you can enjoy a pleasant bath in its pristine waters.
10. Olbia and the Emerald Coast
After more than 300 km of travel we reach Olbia. We have already written about this last stage in the article What to do in northern Sardinia from Alghero and Olbia. The most important city of Gallura is not just one of the main gateways to the island. It is also a centre with many amenities and attractions. From Olbia, you can visit the most exclusive resorts of the Emerald Coast and Porto Cervo in just a few dozen minutes.
Whether you come from Cagliari or Olbia, Eastern Sardinia is a part of the island to visit preferably at stages to dedicate the right time to its many attractions. You should choose as starting point one of the prestigious villas on the sea or a modern apartment that Immobilsarda offers for sale in Gallura-Emerald Coast. From these comfortable properties, you will easily enjoy the wonders of northern area or travel towards south to visit Sardinia along its eastern coast.