July 28, 2014

Where to go in Sardinia: the pristine and wild side

Porto Torres, Sardinia
Sardinia is a magic land that mixes clear waters and white sand beaches remembering the Caribbean with the millenary history of Italy and the ancient civilizations passed through the Mediterranean sea. If north east is the elitist Emerald coast and south the capital city Cagliari, on the north west coast there’s an enchanting gulf, called Asinara, a protected area established as Asinara national park where lay two precious travel destinations, literally assaulted by italian travelers for summer holidays: Porto Torres and Stintino.


In the north-western part of Sardinia, Stintino was born as a place of exile: it is here, on this narrow stretch of sea, baptized “s’isthintinu” that means intestine, where forty Genovese families of fishermen chose to settle in the nineteenth century, after been driven away from Asinara island, situated in front of the promontory, when it was transformed in a hospital and a penal colony. Stintino is today a microcosm of dreams, with its harbors, Portu Mannu and Portu Minori, and magnificent beaches, such as Pelusa beach, light blue with a water clarity and a fine white sand hard to find elsewhere, that make it look like a tropical beach rather than Mediterranean.
Stintino, Sardinia

It is located in the Asinara Gulf, on the north- east side of Capo Falcone, and protected from the open sea by a natural barrier formed by the stacks of Capo Falcone, and by the islands of Piana and Asinara. The water for this reason is always calm even when the mistral blows, frequently in these areas. In front of the beach there is a small islet  with the characteristic Aragonese tower of Pelosa, built in 1578 to defend the coast, which gives its name to the beach . The islet is within walking distance from the beach, following a natural ford. A little further you will notice the Piana island and, over it, the silhouette of the majestic rocks of the Asinara island, nowadays a natural reserve.

Porto Torres

Porto Torres is the main port of northern Sardinia and a famous tourist resort, locted in a beautiful location in the Asinara Gulf, on a plateau that slopes gently toward the sea, The modern city was built on the ruins of the ancient Roman colony Turris Libisonis, founded in the first century BC. Saint Gavino’s Church that stands on Mount Agellu, is one of the main Sardinian heritage monuments. The Asinara island, is located west of the gulf, for years used as a maximum security prison institution now dismantled; became a national park, is characterized by typical Mediterranean vegetation (mastic , myrtle, rosemary), and populated by a lot of wild sheeps and several species of birds.
Porto Torres, Sardinia

PS. The best way to enjoy a trip to this side of Sardinia is on the road! If you don't have a car, check out this rental offer!

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