Wonderful Sardinia

One of the viewpoints on the island of La Maddalena

What this Blog is About

We spent ten days driving across Sardinia in April of 2022.  Unfortunately, ten days was not enough to leisurely explore the island as we found ourselves staying a night here and there instead of two to actually do any explorations.  The temperature was just right but the beaches were cold (for us Arizonans) and had huge waves in some places.  It was also windy at times.  We were surprised that we were rained out only twice.  It was the off season so there were hardly any crowds.

We started from Cagliari and drove north on the west side and stayed at the towns of Teulada, Sardara, Bosa, Santa Teresa before getting on the ferry to the island of La Maddalena.  Then we drove on the east side to return to Cagliari while staying in the towns of Olbia and Abatrax. 

Sardinia surprised us.  We thought that the islands of Menorca and Mallorca were beautiful.  But Sardinia, in our opinion, offers more.  It has a mountain range that runs in the middle of the island.  It even had snow on the ground.  Its beaches are calmer than those of the Spanish islands and the color of the water is tantalizing.     


Teulada is a small town.  It was pretty much dead when we arrived.  There were a few older gentlemen hanging around by the square just chilling and chatting while the afternoon passed by.  We almost had nothing to eat for dinner on our first night in Sardinia as restaurants were closed and bars and coffee shops only served drinks.  We were fortunate enough to run into a take away pizza place that had no sign as we were walking back to our car from the local grocery store.  That was probably the best seafood pizza (Capo Zafferano) we’ve had along with a local wine purchased from the grocery store.

Capo Zaferrano pizza in Teulada

We took SS195 (inland road) to get to Teulada from Cagliari.  The drive was winding and over mountains (more like hills compared to Colorado mountains).  It was not terribly bad.  Our host at B&B Giallo Limone (awesome accommodations by the way) said that we should have taken SP71 which hugged the southwestern coast for about 13 or so kilometers as it is a beautiful drive.  So on our second day, we doubled back and drove SP71.  Indeed, we could have easily spent a full day just exploring the many “calas” or “spiaggias” (beaches), “nuraghe” (stone structures), and stops along the way.  This drive should not be missed.

One of the few Nuraghe along SP71 near Teulada


We did not have much time to explore Sardara as we arrived early in the evening just in time to check in to our B&B accommodation and have dinner.  We just picked Sardara just because that was where we’re going to be after a day of driving.  On the way to Sardara, we made a quick drive by in the town of Sant Antioco for its colorful buildings then took the road along the coast passing by several beaches like Fontanamare.

Sant Antioco

We will remember Sardara as the place where we had the most wonderful dinner served by the friendliest Sardinian lady that did not speak English. Our B&B host recommended the restaurant and called over for us to reserve a seat.  We were the only guests in the restaurant and were met by a middle aged Sardinian lady.  We had so much fun talking to her using our Google translate app that by the end of our meal, we were all comfortable enough to give each other a hug and her saying “Covid, covid covid!!!” jokingly.  Truly a wonderful experience we would never forget. 


Bosa is one of those old towns with colorful homes.  It’s a very walkable town with cobbled and narrow streets.  We arrived around 3PM and explored the town right after checking in.  The castle on top of the hill was closed to visitors but the walk up the base of the castle offered a bird’s eye view of the city.  We walked to places where we wanted to explore in Bosa that afternoon.  There are other places of interest in Bosa that we did not have time for that we think would have required another full day. 

Colorful houses at Bosa

On the Way to Santa Teresa

We needed to reach Capo Testa today from Bosa with stops at Alghero, Capo Caccia, Torre del Porticciolo, Punto Panoramico della Frana and Spiaggia la Pelosa.  The drive alone is over five hours.   This stretch could easily require four to five days to truly appreciate the wonderful stops along the way. But we did it in one day with 15 minutes to an hour at each stop (hey, we had to work with the time we had).  

We took SP49 which became SP105 to get to Alghero from Bosa.  We encountered fog for a few kilometers as we ascended in elevation. Coastal views were mesmerizing once the fog lifted.  Every local we talked to said to go to Alghero.  In hindsight, we should have booked our accommodations here instead of Bosa as the town is larger and seemed to have more places to explore.  At any rate, we saw what we could see in about an hour’s time and had to head on out to Capo Caccia.


Capo Caccia is an ominous cliff jutting out to the sea.  It is within the Parco Naturale Regionale di Porto Conte.  There are several hiking trails in the park (at least on the park map) that we were not able to do as we only had an hour, enough only to drive and take photos. Still, just driving inside the park and pulling over at the various viewpoints such as Belvedere Foradada and Cala Dragunara kept us entertained to make one hour pass by quickly. 

View from Belvedere Foradada

The next stop was Torre del Porticciolo which is a nuraghe on a hill by the sea.  We were there for about 15 minutes and were ready to go.  In hindsight, this one could have been skipped so that there would be more time at Punto Panoramico della Frana (PPF).  The drive to PPF from Torre del Porticciolo is about 25 kilometers according to Google Maps.  But the last two kilometers is a dirt road where it had some deep ruts.  We had to park our car at the last 100 meters and walked up to the panoramic point to avoid risking getting stuck.  We saw a couple of vehicles parked away from the road.  Not sure if they were boondocking but the place seems to be the perfect place to do so as the views of the coastline made me shout “I love Sardinia!!”  Better have a high clearance vehicle if you are going to explore this area further.

Punto Panoramico

Next stop was Spiaggia la Pelosa.  Seemed like it took us about an hour to get there from the PPF.  Spiaggia la Pelosa is easily the most beautiful beach we saw of all the beaches in Sardinia (and even in Menorca and Mallorca).  Calm Caribbean blue water on a long stretch of white sand beach. There were probably less than 10 people on the beach that day.  Judging on the number of marked parking spaces along the road leading to the beach, this place must be packed during the season.  Again, this place is another stop worthy of an idyllic one or two days.

Spiaggia La Pelosa

Last stop was Capo Testa which took over two hours from Spiaggia la Pelosa.  We were disappointed when we reached Capo Testa.  The online photos show impressive granite rock formations.  Yep, they are there but most of them are on private properties.  Maybe if we had more time, we could have discovered those that were publicly accessible.  But the ones we saw from the road were not.  We did a short hike by following a dirt road in the middle of the peninsula.  We got close to huge rocks but ran out of time to follow the road to the beach.  If only we had a high clearance vehicle.  

Our accommodation for the night was at Santa Teresa, only a few minutes from Capo Testa.  Santa Teresa is a small and quiet town.  Their beach, Spiaggia Rena Blanca, is a crescent shaped beach that is walking distance from Stella Guest House, our accommodation

Capo Testa

La Maddalena

It is a short 15 minute or so ferry ride from Palau to La Maddalena.  We drove straight to Caprera island on the land bridge that connects it to La Maddalena.  Majority of Caprera island is part of the Parco Nazionale dell’Arcipelago di La Maddalena. There is   the small community of Stagnali in the southwestern part of the island.   Like most islands, its middle part is elevated and there are six hikeable “poggios” or hills.  Short of time, we only did one hike called Poggio Stefano that took around one hour round trip with about a 100 meter elevation gain to the top of an old structure.  It provided a  panoramic view of the island.  The rest of the day was spent going to the different drivable spiaggias. 

Poggio Stefano trail

Unlike Caprera island, La Maddalena has communities sprinkled throughout the island.  The island is not big at all.  We were able to drive around the island in less than half a day while hitting the stops worthy of taking photos.  Being a developed island, there were not many places to go exploring without running into private property.  However, if you want beaches with turquoise-blue water, this is the island to be.

Spiaggia I due Mari in Caprera Island


We used Olbia as our base for two days to explore Costa Esmeralda to the north and a couple of beaches to the south.  Costa Esmeralda is overrated.  Most on-line articles mentioned Costa Esmeralda as the place to visit when we were researching places to see in Sardinia.  What these articles failed to mention is that most of the properties along the coast are private.  Our hotel receptionist gave us a map highlighting the beaches to see in Costa Esmeralda.  Of the five we decided to explore, we only found one and we had to walk for about 30 minutes looking for the not so obvious path sandwiched between two fences.  It’s pretty much a time consuming effort for a visitor who’s only tool to explore is Google Maps.  We would skip Costa Esmeralda if we were to do it again.  We can’t imagine the beaches to be any better than the beaches we have already seen on the trip.  The only cool thing we saw in this part of the island was Arco di Cala Romantica.  We had to go through a condominium ground to get to the arch.  Fortunately, the condominium property had an unlocked gate.

Cala Romantica


Arbatax is an old seaside town that is halfway between Olbia and Cagliari.  We picked Arbatax because it’s halfway to Cagliari and we did not want to have a long driving day.   There was nothing worth exploring in Arbatax as we drove through town to our hotel.  However, the drive from Olbia to Arbatax through SP125 was a treat.  SP125 climbed up to the spine of the island south of Dorgali.  This road stayed high until we reached the junction going to Urzulei where our GPS said to take instead of continuing on SP125.  There was even some snow on the ground at Cantoniera Ghenna ‘e Sìlana which is the summit.  The establishments at the summit  were closed for the season but we saw a dirt road going down into the Canyon Gorropu that was calling our name.  Unfortunately, we did not have time to do any explorations.  So if you are in the area, we suggest not to miss this scenic drive in the heart of Sardinia. 



Sardinia is a wonderful island.  Caribbean blue and turquoise water surrounds the entire island.  There are plenty of beaches to go to and numerous opportunities to do explorations and commune with nature.