Find out the main differences between the northern and southern coast of the Island
From North to South, the island has some common traits: crystal clear waters and white sandy beaches, a delicious cuisine and an ancient wine culture, welcoming tourist towns and inner areas where old traditions are still alive. But Sardinia is a large region. The coastline changes continuously and towns and tourist destinations are quite different from each other.
The maximum distance from North to South is the one from Capo Falcone, in the extreme northern tip of Sardinia, to Capo Teulada, in the south of the island: about 270 kms. From West to East, there is a maximum distance of 145 kms from Capo Comino to Capo dell'Argentiera. The latter is much closer to the North African coast than to Italy.
The coastline in the North of the island is much more indented then in the South. There are many small rocky bays and coves and only a few long sandy beaches. The North Eastern part is mountainous, while and the Gallura subregion is characterized by granite cliffs.
In Northeast Sardinia, each village and tourist destination has its own peculiarities: the Costa Smeralda is characterized by a crystal clear sea and a glamorous atmosphere. The La Maddalena Archipelago features a stunning sea and breathtaking views. Santa Teresa Gallura is the closest town to Corsica. Here you can take a ferry to visit Bonifacio.
Driving along the North-western coast of Sardinia, you find Isola Rossa, Stintino and Alghero. These are the most popular tourist destinations, not only for the beaches (which are growing longer every year), but also for the lively nightlife, especially on July and August.
The inland of the Southern part of the island is dominated by a vast green plain called Campidano. The shoreline here is more heterogeneous. The coast is quite regular and it features many long sandy beaches, less crowded than in the North, even during the high season.
Many beaches in Sardinia are so spectacular that recall those of the Caribbean islands. Cagliari, the capital city of Sardinia, is located right in the middle of the Southern coast. Both East and West of Cagliari there are some wonderful beach resorts, such as Chia and Santa Margherita di Pula to the West, and Villasimius and Costa Rei to the East.
Your travel style
To sum up, there is no doubt about the beauty of the sea and the beaches in the whole island, but before choosing where to spend your holidays, there is one fundamental question you have to ask yourself: what kind of holiday are you looking for?
If you are looking for a glamorous holiday in a luxury hotel, the Costa Smeralda is the right place for you. If you wish to find peace and quiet and less crowded beaches, you can choose among many resorts in the North, which have just what you need.
If you love hiking, snorkeling and bike tours and you want experience an active holiday in order to to explore a different bay everyday and walking in the mountains, the Ogliastra region is your goal. It is located in Central Eastern Sardinia and it is considered as an “island in the island”.
Both the Southern and Northern beaches, with fine sand and shallow waters, are perfect for a family holiday. You can find several children friendly hotels with services and activities dedicated to small guests. Furthermore, the Sardinia Family Hotels are usually placed at a short distance from small towns and beach resorts with nice restaurants, lovely shops and boutiques.
In order to discover the most traditional and fascinating side of the island you might explore the central part of Sardinia or choose to visit the island during the low and mid season.