Costa Smeralda is a coastal strip in northern Sardinia internationally acclaimed as unique and a top-end destination featuring enchanting white sandy beaches, pristine sea water, secluded coves and untouched Mediterranean landscape.
Since the early years, the Costa Smeralda stands as a glamorous spot attracting affluent guests from all over the world.
Though it has grown considerably since being built by the Aga Khan in the 1960s as a village retreat for the rich, Porto Cervo still manages to combine glamour with 'laid-back cool' in a way that's uniquely Italian and perpetually fascinating!
The aquamarine water and spectacular coastline of Sardinia are every bit as beautiful as the yachts that go there. Summer is the key season, of course, but it's also delightful in September and early October, when the weather is often superb.
Rosemary - Porto Cervo +39-078-991-185
Gianni's, for suckling pig and Seabass – Porto Cervo +39-078-992-436
Billionaire Club +39 0789 94192
Cala di Volpe – There is no other bay in the Mediterranean where you can see so many spectacular yachts at anchor. This is close to Porto Cervo and the site of the famous Hotel Cala di Volpe.
Hotel Cala di Volpe +39-07-89 976-111
Porto Quatu is a quaint and lesser known port near Porto Cervo and is only suitable for yachts up to around 30m. This port is a fjord of incomparable beauty, with rocks sinking in the sea. There are no swimming beaches here but granite rocks covered with rosemary and myrtle and other wild plants are abundant. It is protected from the wind which makes it an ideal mooring place.
Since 1967 the Porto Rotondo’s natural environment has been extensively preserved, making this area one of the most sought after destinations for exclusive international tourism. Porto Rotondo, which takes its name from its semicircular bay, spreads around its Piazza Quadra, full of shops and boutiques that offer designer shopping, interior decorating items and craftsmen.
The harbor is a temporary home to many of the world’s most beautiful yachts. There are also fantastic beaches with truly white sand and turquoise sea - Marinella Beach is the place for water sport enthusiasts.
The lsland of Tavalara - This is a high granite island that overlooks the east coast. A cove and beach can be found at each end of the island, Spalmatore di Fuori at the northeast, and Spalmatore di Terra at the southwest. Currently, the island is inhabited by only a handful of families and a summer restaurant. The water around the island is a popular spot for scuba diving, snorkeling and swimming.
La Maddalena Archipelago: This is a national Park between Corsica and Sardinia. The archipelago is composed of Seven Isles of extraordinary beauty and all are part of the protected international Park of the Bocche di Bonifaccio.
The beaches are made up of fine white or rose colored sand edged by crystal clear waters. Spend the day relaxing and enjoying the beautiful scenery this stunning archipelago offers. If you’re at Isle La Maddalena, you may wish to head ashore to La Grotta Tel: +39 0789 737 228 famous for its fresh seafood. Spend the night at anchor in one of the many bays that you can get protection from any adverse weather or sea conditions.
The Maddalena islands are located inside the Straits of Bonifacio along the north-eastern coast of Sardinia. La Maddalena Island is surrounded by Budelli, Caprera, Razzoli, Santa Maria, Santo Stefano and Spargi.
They once were utilised as a maritime traffic crossing point during the second and first century B.C. This is testified by the remains of a number of old cargo ships that are an interesting destination for today's diving excursion fans. More recently they were used as a naval base and are presently one of the most popular destinations for boating tourists.
La Maddalena is the largest of the La Maddalena Islands. The highest point of the island is Monte Guardia Vecchia (156 m) which can be reached by a carriage road and offers panoramic views.
The island has a triangular shape, an area of 20 km2, nearly 45 kilometres of generally high and jagged coasts and a rich vegetation of berry trees and myrtle.
Budela - This is one of Sardinia's most beautiful beaches and is famous for its pink coral sand. The best mooring places are around the beach of Cala d'Arena (south-eastern point) and the Spiaggia Rosa (Pink Beach). The most beautiful shores are the southern beaches of Cala Piatto and Cala Cisternone, the north-eastern beach of Cala del Cavaliere and the eastern beach of Cala Trana. Like many of Sardinia's gems, the transparency of its waters and the endless supply of fish and crustaceans hiding in the granite ravines make it an excellent destination for snorkelling or underwater photography.
Caprera -This island has been declared a natural reserve for the particular species of seabirds living on it (royal seagull, cormorant and peregrine falcon).
On the south-western side there is a very important sailing centre and the many coves and anchorages which can be found along the coastline make the landing easy. The seabeds are a must both for naturalists and underwater archaeology fans. Many remains of Roman cargo ships as well as of the boat of Garibaldi were found there.
Razoli - This is the island closest to Corsica and together with the islands Budelli and Santa Maria it forms the lagoon of Porto Madonna. It has little over 12 kilometres of coastline and a surface of 1.54 km2.
The jagged coastline of the island forms enchanting coves such as Cala Lunga on the south-western side, which is the only accessible one. Here the sea penetrates into the many small bays such as Cala dei Morti, Cala Calaccia, Cala del Rosario, Cala dell'Acqua and Cala del Bue Marino.
The uninhabited island of Razzoli is separated from the island of Santa Maria by the narrow Passo degli Asinelli. This island is fascinating due to its waters abounding in fish and, in particular, due to the many bird species which live undisturbed on the island.
Useful Information / Porto Cervo
Nearest airport is Olbia Costa Smeralda – distance 25 Km
Nearest private jet airport is Olbia Eccelsa General Aviation – distance 25 Km
Helicopter pad in Porto Rotondo and Porto Cervo
Available Marina for yachts up to 90 m. within a range of 20 Km along the coast
Marina Porto Rotondo
Marina Porto Cervo
Marina Poltu Quatu
*Images courtesy of: Flickr/Michele Somni Flickr/Yvon, Flickr/Stefan Brivio, Flickr/David Blaikie, Flickr/Michela Simonici, Flickr/Teresa Guzzi, Flickr/Richard Mathews, Flickr/Jonathan
*All images shared under Creative Commons License CC.2.0