Favourite Yacht Charter Destinations in Sardinia
Sardinia is fast becoming a firm favourite with yacht charter enthusiasts. Here are some of Sardinia’s best kept secret destinations.
Archipelago of La Maddelena
The Archipelago of La Maddelena on the northeast corner of the island is an area of outstanding natural beauty. It’s a myriad of small islands which are protected by hundreds of white, beautifully formed natural beaches. Entrance to and anchoring is restricted so vessels have to anchor some 300 meters off the coast of the main island and then tender in. Permits are also needed for scuba diving. These can be obtained from the National Park Authority.
Enjoy the crystal waters as you swim, snorkel or scuba dive. Sail to the stunning island of Santa Marina, just off the coast. You can then reach the marine reserve by tender, but there’s no fishing, the area is protected. How about spending some time feeding the many different varieties of tropical fish? As you get into the water the fish will even take food out of your hand.
Why not try out these other idyllicc spots as you cruise around the Archipelago of La Maddelena?
Cala Lunga – this is a natural creek located at the entrance to the harbour of Porto Massimo. Cala Lunga is also nicely sheltered from the westerly wind so a perfect spot for sunbathing.
Cala Napoletana - here you will find stunning white sand and deep turquoise water in a horse shoe bay. Cala Napoletana located to the northwest of Caprera is also sheltered from southerly winds. This is the ideal place to bathe, fish, as well as scuba dive with a permit.
Relitto - is a spectacular white sandy beach in the south of Caprera. It’s named after a shipwreck, a vessel that used to carry black diamonds. The gorgeous bay protects the beach from the prevailing westerlies. Only tendering guests to the beach for drop off and pick up is allowed, fishing, scuba diving and navigation are forbidden here.
Cala Coticcio - known as Tahiti, it’s one of the most beautiful calas in the archipelago, to the northeast of Capreara. Cala Coticcio is surrounded by rugged rocks with white sand and crystal clear blue waters. It’s a little stretch of paradise sheltered from the westerly wind. Drop offs and pickups are only allowed. Again, there’s no fishing, scuba diving or navigation.
Cala Corsara - found to the south of Spargi island, Cala Corsara is sheltered by the westerly winds. It offers inviting white sand and clear waters. Huge boulders which have been fashioned by the wind over time, are a feature here. There is even one known as the Head of the Witch.
You can’t take a yacht charter vacation to Sardinia without stopping off at Porto Cervo, the next exciting destination along the coast. Built by the Aga Khan, it’s known as the hub of Sardinia and a great place to spot some of the world’s largest superyachts. There are designer boutiques at every corner and gourmet restaurants offering the very finest international dining to delicious local cuisine. Make Porto Cervo a must-visit destination on your yacht charter itinerary list.
Nearby there is a fabulous choice of beaches, golf clubs, spas and of course, the world-famous nightspot, Billionaire. Stop for a spot of lunch at the popular restaurant Il Pescatore with a terrace table overlooking the sea, delightful.
If you enjoy shopping, Thursday is a good day to go ashore to visit the local market at San Pantaleo. It’s a picturesque village set against a stunning granite massif which overhangs it. You’re bound to admire the traditional one-storey houses and villas built in the style of the Gallura area that surrounds the church. Do visit the vineyards of Surrau or Capichera in Arzachena. On the way back to your yacht, pop in for a refreshing aperitif at the Café Nina in the quaint square or order lunch at the Giagoni restaurant which specialises in local lamb dishes.
During your time here, don’t miss out on the many Sardinian specialities. Make a reservation at La Sasima, a 100-year-old renovated farmhouse, around 20 minutes out of Porto Cervo. It’s considered to be one of the best rustic restaurants in the Mediterranean so book a table well in advance. Expect mouth-watering traditional Sardinian food such as spit-roasted suckling pig accompanied with fine, local wines.
If you prefer somewhat chic with elegant dining, then head for Gianni Pedrinelli, five minutes away from Porto Cervo. Here you have a wonderful choice of beautifully served Italian food. Enjoy taste bud tantalising cuisine said to be traditional, with a twist.
Porto Cervo is also the perfect destination for sailing events. Important regattas take place here all year beginning in June with the Loro Piano Superyacht Regatta hosted by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda. What a sight, a large number of sailing superyachts doing battle on the water, make sure you have your camera ready.
Cala di Volpe
Another hugely popular spot for a Sardinian yacht charter vacation is the Cala di Volpe. The majestic bay can be quite crowded during the peak summer months however at other times of the year, this hotspot destination is a haven of tranquility. Cala di Volpe is also home to the exclusive Hotel Cala di Volpe, popular with guests from around the world. What could be better than a sumptuous buffet prepared by your very own chef, on the beach overlooking the bay?
Tavolara and Molara Island
Designated as a National Marine Park, Tavolara and Molara Island is an area of outstanding natural beauty. There is good anchorage available at Cala Spalmatore where a must-do is to snorkel and dive off Molara Island. For lunch try Da Tonino, a great restaurant serving seafood right on the beach with panoramic views.
Ask your captain to head for Cala Gonone at the eastern midpoint on the coast of Sardinia. It’ quite often deserted and devoid of yachts so you usually have the spectacular coastline all to yourself. Look up at the towering mountains above as you cruise very close to the coast. There’s a small harbour at this archetypal Sardinian village which can be visited by tender. Spend a morning or afternoon enjoying the fabulous beaches of Cala Luna, Golortitze and Girgolu.
The spectacular caves at Grotta del Bue Marino and Groto Ispinigo are really worth a visit by tender. Did you know that they have some of the tallest stalagmites in Europe? For guests wanting to explore, there’s an exciting opportunity of taking a 4x4 tour of Lanaitto Valley as well as the Grotto Corbeddu. During the tour visit the home of a shepherd in Pinnetos or trek in Tiscali, an ancient village hidden in a grotto. How about seeing Su Gorropu, a deep canyon which is truly awesome.
Having dinner at the Su Gorroppu restaurant is quite an experience. Enjoy tapas, cheese, olives and homemade bread in their traditional cellar. Finish off with a little wine tasting in the winery. You can dine here either in front of a 100-year old fireplace where specialities are cooked on huge spits or dine on the charming terrace that’s enclosed beside cascades of beautiful flowers.
Deep in the south of the island is the capital, Cagliari. It’s an ancient city with a very long history covering several civilisations. Set some time aside to discover the eye-catching art nouveau architecture and monuments in the old town of Castello. For lunch, there are a number of recommended restaurants such as Ristorante San Remy found in the old town centre or the Ristorante Semplicemente in the centre. If you prefer a beach view, try Ristorante La Paillote.
Pula is definitely worth a visit. Known on the island as the pearl of the Mediterranean, the Forte Village of Santa Margherita di Pula is simply divine while Cala Domestica is one of the most unusual and picturesque places in all of Sardinia. With sheer cliffs as a backdrop, it’s a photographer’s dream.
For those who just want to relax, paradise awaits you. Treatments at the Thaermae del Forte spa and Wellness Centre in the resort’s garden are a must. If golf is your thing then check out the highly recommended Molas Golf Club.
Do something a little different for your last night in Cagliari. Arrange a dining experience like no other in a converted lighthouse. The Lighthouse of Capospartivento built in 1856 is still in operation today warning mariners of the dangerous and hazardous rocks below. Guests are served a candlelit meal on a raised open terrace with unbelievable views out to sea.
The joy of yachting is you can do what you want, when you want. This is certainly true when sailing to different yacht charter destinations around Sardinia, Italy.
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