Delicious Sardinia is an unspoiled beach paradise where electric-hued water meets pristine clean sand. From tiny, wild coves to gloriously expansive strands, the island’s coastline comes in countless forms.
Without a doubt, the island of Sardinia is home to some of the very best beaches in the Mediterranean. Crystalline waters of dazzling turquoise, cobalt or emerald lap shores of white or golden sand – variously backed by fragrant pinewoods, plunging rocks or charming small towns. With more than 1,000 kilometres of coastline, a list of the island’s ‘best’ beaches could easily run into the hundreds.
And who can arbitrate on ‘best’ anyway, given that tastes vary so much on what makes a beach perfect?
To some, it’s seclusion and an air of exclusivity – a tiny, private-feeling cove flanked by sculptural rocks and pretty vegetation, with not a sunlounger or snack-bar in sight. To others, it’s a huge expanse of soft, strollable sand with wide views to distant islets and a cute nearby fishing village full of cafés and restaurants. Needless to say, Sardinia offers plenty of beaches like these, and more. You’ll always be spoilt for choice on this island, but here are some ideas on where you might start…
Sinis Peninsula – West Sardinia
Wild, undeveloped, windswept and dramatic, the coastline of the Sinis Peninsula is a protected wonderland of colourful landscapes. There are stubby cliffs, shapely sweeps of low-lying land, sleepy lagoons, reefs, gleaming beaches, miniature deserts of dunes, Greek ruins and even a small, cracked volcano. Uncrowded and entirely unspoilt, this is a wonderful area to bask in the elements, and to surf, cycle or snorkel. Two beaches you should include on your itinerary are San Giovanni di Sinis – a long gentle arc of pale sand overlooked by an old watchtower – and Is Arutas – where the sand is fine pieces of quartz, like shiny multi-coloured grains of rice. The nearby provincial capital, Oristano, is a handsome place and a good base from which to explore the peninsula.
Arcipelago di La Maddalena – Northeastern Tip of Sardinia
The Maddalena archipelago is a protected geomarine National Park comprising seven agonizingly beautiful islands – four of them uninhabited – plus innumerable tiny islets. Entirely unspoilt, it’s an aquatic Eden, with white sand, wind-sculpted rocks and dazzlingly clear water in barely credible shades of blue and green. Among the best beaches are the white-sand Cala Corsara on the isle of Spargi and the pink – yes, pink – Spiaggia Rosa on Budelli. Getting to and around the archipelago requires planning. From mainland Sardinia, you can embark from Santa Teresa di Gallura, Porto Pozzo, Palau or Cannigione. La Maddalena is the largest of the islands and there is some accommodation available in its eponymous town.