Wednesday, 15 June 2011

The Independent's Travellers Guide to Sardinia

Tucked deep into the jagged fjords of Sardinia's north-eastern tip lies some of the most expensive real estate in the Mediterranean, the Costa Smeralda (Emerald Coast). In high season, three-storey yachts putter around pools shimmering a kaleidoscope of azure hues, oligarchs occupy faux Arabian villas, and trophy wives glide from boutique to boutique. The result is a pseudo-idealised Mediterranean village, the artificiality of which allows scarcely a bougainvillea out of place. This Moorish-kasbah-meets-Mykonos wonderland is the island's most famous attraction. Yet it has almost nothing to do with the rest of Sardinia... Click here to read full article including:

Exploring the Barbagia - Sardinia's rebellious character springs from its interior, a rugged collection of villages hemmed in by the Gennargentu and Supramonte mountain massifs.

Stay the Night - Su Gologone Country Hotel - Sardinia's finest hotel is in its interior.
Villa Las Tronas - the lush gardens, pool, and spa set on a rocky bluff with sweeping views of the sea are certainly impressive.

Cagliari and Alghero - Sardinia's capital and largest city, Cagliari, is an urbane beacon.
Suitably, Sardinia's most touristy town is also its most attractive: Alghero.

Cruising the Golfo di Orosei - Sardinia's most spectacular coastline is only accessible by boat.

Eat like a local - Sardinia's isolation has worked to preserve the most distinct regional cuisine in Italy.

Getting there and getting around - Sardinia has three international airports.

Specialist operator Just Sardinia offers a wealth of walking and cycling excursions, as well as yacht charters and rural retreats (01202 484858;