About Alghero (Sardinia)
Sardinia: The Island of the Sun, 1,843 km of coastline and a sea of reasons to discover it!!!
Sardinia, with its 1,843 km of coastline, culture and thousand-year history is the ideal destination for any time of the year. An island with a mild, sunny climate, a large heart and unique ancient traditions.
You can enjoy a different experience and discover the many sides of a large island (24,000 sq km) from the sea to the mountains, immersed in a wild but welcoming natural environment, with delightful routes among culture, tradition, well-being and enjoyment. Letting yourself be inspired is tempting, but also an art form!
In the north of the island there are towns such as Sassari (the political capital) and ancient, historical villages overlooking the sea such asAlghero, Stintino, Castelsardo, Bosa, Isola Rossa and Santa Teresa,where you can find paradises of crystalline water and the finest sand but also rugged hinterland and breathtaking landscapes, rich with archeological remains which are unique in the world: from complex “Nuragici” (spectacular, antique fortresses unique to the area) to the “domus de janas” (fairies’ houses), from the “giants’ tombs” to the numerous Roman and medieval ruins.
From Alghero, the doorway to the north of Sardinia, with its international airport, you begin your journey towards the island’s most beautiful destinations to sample ancient cultures and traditions, thanks to the hospitality of the Sardinian people.
Alghero: its romantic historical centre, idyllic beaches and red gold
Overlooking the sea, in front of the spectacular white cliffs of Capo Caccia, Alghero (Alguer) is one of the most beautiful and characteristic towns of north-west Sardinia. The sea is ever-present in the landscape, with its fine beaches and its touristic port where enormous yachts are moored next to colourful, characteristic fishing boats.
The city’s history has Catalan origins; in fact, Alghero is also known as “Barceloneta” (“little Barcelona”). These origins are still reflected in the local dialect, and in the distinctly Iberian architecture of its city walls, its ancient palaces and churches.
The city’s historical centre, its towers, the town market, and its cobbled streets are still the pulsing heart of ancient Alguer thanks to its sophisticated boutiques, goldsmiths and characteristic bars. The sea, and the fishing industry, are represented in the local cuisine and the manufacture of coral, “the red gold of Alghero”. It is almost impossible not to visit the Coral Museum or discover the typical handicraft shops with their renowned works of precious coral jewellery and typical jewellery of Sardinia’s most ancient goldsmith culture.
Alghero has a wide range of attractions for visitors: cultural (history, events, architecture, etc), environmental (the Park of Porto Conte, the Caves of Neptune, etc), and sports (trekking, diving, horse riding, sailing, golf, etc). It also has moments of pure well-being. such as sunsets to be enjoyed on its waterfront, relaxing walks along its ancient ramparts, its renowned and sophisticated wine and food culture in the restaurants and bistros in the historic centre; these are all vibrantly colourful seductive essentials.
Alghero is admired for the ruins of its medieval fortress, the pulsating, ancient heart of its well-known movida, and other events such as the famous New Year party (Cap D’Any). The religious soul of Alghero comes into its own at Easter, when the streets in the centre transform into an engaging scenario with the rites of the “Holy Week” in which the whole city participates with great devotion.
Stintino:: historic fishing village, unique beaches and breath-taking islands and parks
Stintino is a small, characteristic marine village from the 19th century, originally home to a settlement of fishermen coming from the nearby island, Asinara. It is particularly famous for its Pelosa beach, which is considered to be one of the most popular beaches of the Mediterranean Sea due to its tropical beauty. Stintino has a small port which is a natural fjord, where you can see its characteristic boats, the “Gozzi di vela Latina”. Along the coast there are other beautiful beaches such as “Le Saline” and “Le Tonnare”, which take their names from the settlement for tuna fishing.
The nearby Island of Asinara, which nowadays is a National Park, used to be a penal colony (the Alcatraz of Italy). Until a few years ago it was inaccessible and wild but it is worth a visit to discover its multifaceted nature, from the granite rocks carved by the wind to its marvellous bays with their fine white sand and emerald-blue sea, to the rare white donkeys from which the island gets its name. It is possible to explore the beauty of Asinara by foot, by horse, by bicycle or by jeep, and also via the sea on a splendid and relaxing sailboat.
The island is also the site of some important archeological discoveries; it is possible to visit underwater wrecks with guided dives where you can enjoy the rich and uncontaminated sea floor.
This medieval town clings to a promontory stretching towards the gulf of Asinara and is considered one of the “most beautiful villages in Italy”. The view of the fortified centre, which stands out by the sea with its castle, is magnificent.
Few towns like Castelsardo have had the ability to enhance their historical and cultural heritage in terms of dynamics and especially enjoyment for its visitors; in fact, Castelsardo is part of the itinerary of the seven “royal cities of Sardinia”, which includes six other important island centres: Sassari, Alghero, Bosa, Oristano, Cagliari and Iglesias.
The town is the cradle of the craftsmanship and weaving of typical Sardinian baskets; inside the castle, in the Weaving Museum, you can admire the craftsmen’s techniques and products or stop in the romantic Borgo Antico and discover the numerous shops and workshops where you can buy precious, original, handmade items.
Castelsardo is a destination of great touristic and cultural interest, especially for young people who flock to the ancient town during the aperitif concerts and the picnic concerts which take place every year on the relaxing green at the foot of the castle.
The “Lunissanti” procession (Holy Monday) is one of a kind, dating back to medieval times; this religious ceremony starts on Good Friday, passing along the streets of the ancient town illuminated only by ancient oil lamps and torches, with the deposition of Christ from the Cross (“s’iscravamentu”).
The marina and the port of Castelsardo are famous throughout the island thanks to the accessibility of the services on offer to both small and large boats; its numerous beaches (Vignaccia, Pedraladda, Baia Ostina, etc.) are characterized by bays with fine sand flanked by rocky formations of singular, magical shapes created by the action of the sea and the wind.
Not far from Castelsardo is the spectacular “Elephant Rock”, another symbol of the town. It is a monument in the shape of an elephant, decorated internally with sacred sculptures which are believed to be, according to ancient tales, home to fairies (“domus de janas”).
A taste of Bosa
From Alghero, following the western coast towards the south, you can find Bosa, a picturesque centre nestling on the bank of the River Temo, the only navigable course of water in Sardinia. Its marina, renowned for its large beach which overlooks the town, is a destination of great cultural and artistic interest tied to a more “meditative” type of tourism, thanks to the peculiarity of its coasts, its nature, and the roads through the ancient town that lead to its castle.
The castle of Serravalle, which belonged to the Marquis of Malaspina (1112 a.d.) dominates the town of Bosa and without a doubt represents an arrival point in the itinerary that, from the characteristic medieval quarter called “Sa Costa”, leads to the fortress, stopping in the small church of “Regnos Altos” to admire the valuable frescoes inside it.
Near the River Temo, along which Bosa lies, you can experience the wonders of the city, from the colours of former tanneries (“sas conzas”) that are reflected on the river, to the local produce of renowned quality, from food and wine to the handmade production of fabrics and “Filet” embroidery.
Bosa is the home of the celebrated “Malvasia”, a white wine with a delicate, characteristic aroma, which you can taste in the city’s characteristic bars as an aperitif or together with the flavours of traditional Sardinian confectionary such as sospiri, pirikittos and amaretti. The winemaking tradition permeates Bosa and its surroundings along the “Malvasia Road of Bosa”, an itinerary that will lead you to the discovery of the origins of the famous wine and the rituals that still accompany its making.
The spirit of the city is most noticeable at the unmissable festival of “Our Lady of Regnos Altos” (8 September), during which the statue of the Madonna is carried in a procession up to the sanctuary, followed by the faithful with their particular “altarittos” (votive altars) through Bosa’s ancient, characteristic lanes which are decorated for the festival.
Alghero Airport (AHO)
The airport is located 12 km away from Alghero city centre.
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