June 2016
  • Day1

    Alghero, Sardinia

    June 20, 2016 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 15 °C

    Ancient fishing village turned holiday hot spot, the town of Alghero, Sardinia, offers visitors clean beaches with crystal clear water as well as a host of architectural delights. The city itself features cobblestone streets and fortified walls that house a large number of quaint shops and restaurants, while the surrounding beach area stretches off to pristine nature preserves and traditional villages. The only downside to Alghero is the sometimes overwhelming amount of tourism it receives from northern Europe in the summer.

    History
    Alghero was a small Sardinian fishing village until 1323, when it was taken over by the House of Aragon in Spain and the local population was pushed aside by Catalan colonists. The Spanish named the city "Barcelonetta," meaning "little Barcelona," and developed it into a small but bustling port city and maritime fort. The powerful northern Italian Savoy family took over Alghero in 1720. It became part of Italy following Italian unification. Alghero retains much of its former Catalan culture, especially in cuisine and traditional festivities, and the Catalan tongue is spoken by much of the populace.

    Highlights of Alghero
    The town beach, called the Lido, runs from the center of town to a small hamlet called Fertilia, just south of town. The larger San Giovanni beach runs north of town and features some of the area's clearest water. The 16th-century cathedral in the heart of the historic center is built in a Catalan-Gothic style and is located on the central plaza. The ancient walls of the city are largely intact and offer sweeping views over the sea from their battlements. Capo Caccia is a limestone cave system that is accessible by boat from the Lido. Porto Conte is a nature preserve located just outside of town; reachable by boat or land, it features some of the island's best diving opportunities.

    Dining in Alghero
    The cuisine of Alghero is heavily influenced by both Catalan and Italian cuisine yet is almost entirely based on local Sardinian produce, meat and seafood, such as the immensely popular local rock lobster. Many of the restaurants in Alghero have panoramic sea views and offer traditional dishes such as malloredus, a saffron-spiced pasta made with tomato sauce, sausage and cheese, and panadas, which are pies stuffed with eels or other local seafood and meats. For cheap eats, a variety of street vendors sell freshly made pizza.

    Accommodations in Alghero
    The old town of Alghero is home to several bed-and-breakfast-type accommodation options and a spattering of small boutique hotels, while the Lido is lined with modern beachfront hotels, many of which cater to all-inclusive tourists from Britain and Germany. Outside of the city itself, a blossoming agriturismo industry is forming, where guests live on small family farms and learn about traditional food production and preparation methods.

    Getting There
    The Fertilia Airport, less than 10 miles north of town, offers direct flights to and from most major Italian cities as well as London and Frankfurt. A train runs between Alghero and the town of Sassari, about 35 minutes up the coast, and a variety of buses arrive and depart from the bus terminal for points all over the island on a daily basis.
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  • Day1

    Bosa, Sardinia

    June 20, 2016 in Norway ⋅ 🌧 12 °C

    We drove from Alghero to Bosa. A nice relaxing and charming town with beautiful food. The Pizza is a must.

    The authentic Sardinia - traditional and charming

    Bosa is a unique and unspoilt town on the north western coast of Sardinia, about 40 km south of Alghero. Surrounded by beautiful, wild countryside, stunning beaches and coastline, Bosa has retained its ancient charm and Sardinian identity and has not suffered the over-development of many of the island's beach destinations. It has a relaxed Mediterranean buzz and is a perfect place to go to escape from the stresses of modern life. Guidebooks call it "an undiscovered gem".

    Bosa is an exceptionally delightful town of cobbled streets, piazzas, gracious palazzos with wrought iron balconies and modern amenities such as bars, cafes, restaurants, shops, a museum and art gallery - a mix of the historic and contemporary. It is set along the palm tree lined banks of the river Temo, surrounded by a stunning landscape of rocky hills and fertile valleys. Being a real working town of 8000 year round inhabitants and not only a tourist resort, it does not shut down outside the summer high season of July and August. It is an active and interesting place all the year round, although most people visit during the spring, summer and autumn.

    Historic town centre

    The historic centre of the town, the Sa Costa district, is an intriguing maze of medieval streets, stone staircases and terraces of tall houses painted in bright or pastel colours, nestled under the hilltop Malaspina castle. One can see a vista of terracotta tiled rooftops, the multi-coloured dome of the cathedral and the river Temo stretching west to the sea, and east up the valley. All around are hills with colours ranging from the lush green of spring to the golden tones of summer and autumn.

    Convenient location

    In the centre of the historic old town there are many amenities within a few minutes walk - cafes, bars and restaurants as well as places to buy groceries, bread, fruit and vegetables, wine and of course delicious ice cream! In the evening you can stroll down to the main street with its gracious palazzos and join in "la passeggiata", when everyone comes out to chat, exchange news and opinion, or just watch the world. The streets immediately surrounding the house are residential and quiet at night.

    Beaches

    About 2 kms from old town - a walk, cycle ride or drive down the river Temo - is Bosa Marina, the nearest beach. This beach is safe and sandy with a gradual slope into the sea. It is protected by a long causeway and has a lifeguard during the summer months. It is regularly judged to be amongst the cleanest beaches in Italy and is relatively uncrowded, even in the high season. Access is free, as is nearby parking. Around Bosa Marina beach are restaurants, clubs, cafes and bars with an Italian character, run by local people. It is very lively in the summer, with bars and clubs open until 3 am. As well as companies offering diving excursions and boat hire, there are also shops to buy beach goods such as buckets and spades, paddleboards and flip-flops.

    There are many other beaches within a few kilometres of Bosa. Some are small cove beaches surrounded by lush vegetation and cliffs. Some are long sandy strands. Some consist of dramatic limestone shelves sculpted over the millennia by wind and water, with incredible rock formations and natural swimming pools. All are free, uncrowded and unspoilt.

    Culture and history

    Bosa has an air of deep peace and relaxation, but it also has a long and fascinating history as an important royal town and economic presence. The hilltop castle of the Malaspinas has an unparalleled view of the town and out to sea. Within its walls is a church with fifteenth century frescoes and a lovely wooden statue of Madonna and Child, which is carried in procession through the town during the festival of Regnos Altos in September. Along the river Temo are ruined tanneries, national monuments, from the days when Bosa exported fine leather all over Europe. The seventeenth century Cattedrale della Immacolata is large, gilded, has a colourful tiled dome and is painted with scenes of Bosa.

    Active holidays

    As well as being a cultural centre, Bosa also offers wonderful opportunities for active pursuits such as walking, cycling, diving, boating, golf, fishing, windsurfing, bird watching and horse riding. Several companies in the town run excursions to places of interest for those who like organised tours. The nearby Modolo and S'Abba Male valleys are a fertile paradise of vineyards and olive groves. The area is the home of Malvasia di Bosa, a famous fortified wine. There is a wine trail and tours are available. Nearby hilltop towns such as Magomadas and Cuglieri offer fantastic panoramas of outstanding natural beauty. Going out exploring one comes across hidden valleys which feel remote and timeless, hilltops looking out over the sea and miles of untouched coastline.

    Sunsets

    As Bosa is on the western coast of the island, evening brings a view of the sun setting over the sea, casting a pink glow over the hills, beaches and rocks of the coastline. Every evening people gather at Bosa Marina to watch the colours of the sky and sea change as the sun goes down.
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  • Day1

    La Pelosa, Sardinia

    June 20, 2016 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ -6 °C

    A really beautiful place to visit with beautiful beaches. There is also plenty of restaurant with great food on the hill with beautiful view of the ocean. We was just driving thru this beautiful place and stop and eat some marvelous food up in the hill. I can recommend you to travel to this beautiful place.

    La Pelosa beach (Spiaggia della Pelosa), with its shallow turquoise waters and salty white sands, is a true Sardinian oasis and arguably one of the best beaches of Europe. One of the westernmost beaches of Sardinia, La Pelosa is just 2 kilometers away from the harbour village of Stintino, in Capo Falcone, in the province of Sassari. The beach is 300 meters long – and up to 60 meters wide in some spots – and faces north-east, offering marvelous views of Isola Piana situated 600 meters off the coast and the larger Isola Asinara behind it.

    La Pelosa beach is accompanied by an ancient sixteenth century watchtower, the Torre della Pelosa, that used to be part of Sardinia’s marine defense system. Since this is a popular diving area, there are two diving centers in the vicinity: the Asinara Diving Center, and the Roccaruja Diving Center. Both offer diving excursions in the Capo Falcone area. Surfboards and canoes are for rent at the Stintino Windsurfing Center nearby. The beach can get crowded during peak season in July and August, but if you find yourself in the area of Sassari or Porto Torres, La Pelosa beach is definitely worth a visit. For many Europeans, La Pelosa is a marvelous opportunity to experience the Caribbean at a fraction of the cost.

    La Pelosa Beach Hotels

    Just 3 kilometers from La Pelosa beach, you’ll find Hotel Cala Reale in Asinara Bay, near the pier of Stintino. The hotel features a garden with outdoor pool and sun terrace. Closer to the beach and just 2 kilometers from Stintino, you’ll find Residence Le Vele, with studios that feature a panoramic balcony or patio. Park Hotel Asinara is only a 10-minute walk from the town centre of Stintino. Accommodations are air conditioned, and the hotel offers a free shuttle service to La Pelosa beach.

    Directions to La Pelosa Beach

    From Sassari, take the SS 131 to Porto Torres. Before reaching Porto Torres, take the SP 34 to Pozzo San Nicola, then continue on the SP 34 and head for Stintino. Continue on the main road towards La Pelosa beach.
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