Sardinia Honeymoon Guide

Blessed with almost 2000km of coastline, the island of Sardinia offers soaring cliffs and rugged shorelines, flower-strewn hillsides, ancient archaeological ruins and charismatic medieval towns that are just a short hop away from mainland Italy.

Sardinia offers the perfect destination for a honeymoon and romantic getaway; or even a short break from Rome or Venice.

What to do and see in Sardinia

Discover a huge range of magnificent beaches ringing the island and a choice of exclusive holiday resorts along the magnificent Costa Smeralda and at the popular resort city of Alghero, which features narrow winding medieval streets and a 5km-long golden-sand beach.

The east coast region of Sardinia around Costa Rei (photo) is best known for its crystal clear water, natural rock formations and long golden-sand beaches fringed by pine groves.

Don't miss Marina Rei Beach, an 8km-long white sand beach that shelves into mainly shallow water that is perfect for swimming.

Stroll through a maze of ancient alleyways in Cagliari's historic Castello Quarter, see ancient Roman ruins at Nora and prehistoric remains at Palmavera and Barumini.

Climb Mount La Marmora, the island’s highest point and hike through the Gennargentu National Park in eastern Sardinia, with its unique coastal landscape of craggy rocks, turquoise waters and hidden caves.

Or discover craggy mountains and green valleys on the Trenino Verde (or ‘little green train’) that runs for 160km from the east coast to the hill town of Mandas.

Top attractions in Sardinia, include…

Cagliari Old Town – Stroll through the maze of ancient alleyways surrounded by huge defensive stonewalls, in Cagliari's historic Castello Quarter, the most atmospheric part of town.

Climb to the top of the Torre San Pancrazio, which was built in 1305 and offers panoramic views over the city and its bay.

Visit the 13th century Cattedrale, with its magnificent carved pulpits illustrating the life of Christ, the ornate 17th century baroque tomb of Martin II of Aragon and Marie-Josephine of Savoy, the wife of Louis XVIII of France.

Admire archaeological artefacts at the Museo Archeologico Nazionale, including a series of bronze statuettes dating back to 1200 BC and Sardinia's Nuraghic people, as well as those from the Phoenician, Carthaginian and Roman eras.

See remains of the 2nd century Anfiteatro Romano, Sardinia’s largest Roman ruin, then stroll among more than 500 species of Mediterranean and tropical plants in one of Italy's most famous botanical gardens – the Orto Botanico.

Don’t miss the 5th century Basilica di San Saturnino (Church of San Saturno), Sardinia's oldest church, located to the east of the old town in Piazza di San Cosimo.

Alghero – Wander the ancient narrow streets of Sardinia’s most beautiful town, lined with ramparts, towers, palaces and churches in the old town or Città Vecchia, which was built on a rocky ledge above the sea by its former Spanish occupiers.

Pop into the Cattedrale di Santa Maria, an impressive example of Catalan architecture, and the Chiesa di San Franceso, which dates from the 14th century.

Later, unwind on the golden sands of Alghero’s 5km-long beach or head to the Grotta di Nettuno (Neptune’s Cave), one of Sardinia’s greatest natural attractions, accessed by boat or on foot by descending 654 steps down the cliff face.

The immense cavern is filled with a collection of small lakes and a forest of stalactites.

Alghero is located on the northwest coast, around 229km from Cagliari.

Nuora – Stroll the ancient remains of Sardinia’s oldest city, founded by the Phoenicians then occupied in turn by the Carthaginians and the Romans.

See the Roman theatre, the Temple of Tanit, ancient roads and baths with some well-preserved mosaics.

Also view the 11th century church of Sant'Efisio and a 16th century watchtower. Then unwind on the golden-sand beach and swim in the crystal clear water.

Nora is located 3km south of Pula and 28km southwest of Cagliari, around 30 minutes by bus or car.

Nuraghe Palmavera – Discover a collection of some 50 prehistoric stone-built dwellings that date back to the 14th century BC.

Marvel at the beehive-shaped central tower and the ruins of a palace built by the Nuragic people, a civilisation that produced the most advanced architecture of this period in the western Mediterranean.

Nuraghe Palmavera is located 12km from Alghero.

Su Nuraxi Barumini – Stroll around the remains of the largest and most famous of Sardinia's nuraghic complexes, dating from around 1500 BC.

Marvel at the partially collapsed 15m-high tower and its outer defences and chambers connected by alleyways and stone staircases.

The well-preserved remains were only discovered after a torrential rainstorm washed away earth from the slopes in 1949.

This fascinating site is located 1km from the village of Barumini, around 50km north of Cagliari.

Sa Sartiglia – Feast your eyes on one of Sardinia’s most spectacular festivals.

This three-day event includes horseback parades, masked participants, lavish costumes, medieval pageantry trials of equestrian prowess climaxing in a joust, when galloping contestants attempt to lance a ring (or sartiglia), suspended in the air.

Oristano's flamboyant Sa Sartiglia festival ends on Shrove Tuesday.

Best beaches in Sardinia

Sardinia offers some of the Mediterranean’s best beaches, edged by dazzling shades of aquamarine and emerald green water – perfect for a honeymoon or romantic getaway.

Discover silky sand beaches that offer every conceivable facility and others that rely solely on their scenic beauty, nestled beneath soaring cliffs and fringing tiny coves that lie sheltered between rocky headlands.

One of the best ways to discover your own beach getaway is to charter a boat for the day or hire a car and explore the coast.

Here is a selection of some of the best of Sardinia’s world-class beaches from Costa Smeralda and Costa Paradiso to the Gulf of Orosein, Ogliastra, Costa Rei, Villasimius and Pula.

Alghero Beaches

At Alghero, discover a choice of impressive white-sand beaches that lie beneath dramatic rocky headlands and ancient watchtowers, stretching from Capo dell'Argentiera to Capo Caccia along the west coast of Sardinia.

The best beaches in Alghero, include…

Le Bombarde Beach

Relax on this 900m-long white-sand beach that shelves steeply into the crystal clear, deep blue water of a calm bay fringed by a dense pine and eucalyptus forest.

Facilities include beach umbrellas, sun loungers, a bar, restaurant and hotel.

Le Bombarde Beach is located around 3km west of Fertilia.

Torre del Porticciolo Beach

This crescent-shaped beach sits beneath a shrub-covered headland capped by a 16th century Spanish watchtower with panoramic views over the coastline.

Swim in the clear water of the turquoise bay, sunbathe on the sand and pebble beach and hike the hillsides covered in colourful native vegetation. Facilities include a bar, supermarket, pizzeria and various accommodation options.

Torre del Porticciolo Beach is located 17km northwest of Alghero.

Mugoni Beach

Pick your own spot to sunbathe on this long and narrow white-sand beach that shelves into the clear aquamarine waters of a sheltered bay and is fringed by dense eucalyptus trees.

Facilities include beach umbrellas, showers and toilets, food kiosks and boats for hire.

Mugoni Beach is located 18km northwest of Alghero.

Maria Pia Beach

Fringed by a dense forest of pine trees, this white-sand beach shelves into clear turquoise waters offering perfect swimming conditions.

Facilities include a refreshment stand, beach umbrellas and boats for hire.

Maria Pia Beach is located 2km northwest of Alghero.

Porto Ferro Beach

Discover a 2km-long crescent of soft pink-tinged sand overlooked by three 17th century watchtowers and surrounded by sand dunes and a pine forest.

Exposed to strong northwest winds, this beach is a favourite place for surfers. Facilities include cafes, restaurants, umbrellas and lifeguards.

Porto Ferro Beach is located 26km northwest of Alghero.

Read more about Alghero beaches

Chia Beaches

Explore the south coast around Chia and discover one of Sardinia’s most scenic coastlines, indented with rugged cliffs, Spanish watchtowers and secluded emerald-green coves fringed by gorgeous wide and silky white-sand beaches that are often flanked by sprawling dunes and clear lagoons.

The best beaches in Chia, include…

Spiaggia Sa Colonia

Sunbathe on the sugar-white sand of this gorgeous 1km-long beach that overlooks the site of the ancient Phoenician-Punic city of Bithia.

Behind the beach lies Chia pond, where you can watch flamingos and other waterfowl.

Or stroll along the beach to the Torre di Chia, a 16th century stone tower built to repel pirates. Facilities include a bar, restaurant, pizzeria, disco and various accommodation options.

Spiaggia Sa Colonia is around 1km southeast of the centre of Chia.

Porto Campana Beach

Unwind on this pristine golden-sand beach that gently shelves into emerald-green water.

Porto Campana is a wide beach framed by bush-covered headlands and rare bushes such as junipers, lentisks, rockroses and scented white cornflowers that grow in the sand dunes behind.

Facilities include beach umbrellas, deck chairs, a kiosk and water sports. There are various boats for hire including rubber dinghies, hobie cats, tridents and lasers, as well as surfboards, windsurf boards and water skis.

The nearby Grand Hotel Chia Laguna offers a range of accommodation options.

Porto Campana is located 2km southeast of Chia.

Su Giudeu Beach

Dig your toes into the soft white sand of this long beach that sits between a wide turquoise bay and large sand dunes, some of which rise up to 20m in height, dotted with age-old juniper trees.

Make your own footprints on this pristine beach and stroll out to tiny Su Giudeu Island, a huge schist rock covered with shrubs. Facilities include umbrellas, deck chairs and water sports equipment such as kayaks, pedal boats and windsurfers. A beachside kiosk sells cool drinks, sandwiches and ice creams. Su Giudeu is located around 2km southeast of Chia.

Su Cardolinu Beach

This secluded, small golden-sand beach links a small islet to the mainland and is framed by thick vegetation and clear turquoise water.

There are no facilities on the beach, however bars, restaurants and a pizzeria are located nearby at Porticciolo Beach.

Su Cardolinu is located around 2km south of Chia.

Cala Cipolla Beach

Unwind on this gorgeous golden-sand beach fringed by shrub and dunes scattered with pines and coccoloni junipers.

The picture-perfect beach is framed by two granite headlands and shelves into a turquoise sea, forming a small natural pool. Apart from a small kiosk selling ice creams, there are no facilities here so you need to take your own food and drinks.

Cala Cipolla is located around 4km southeast of Chia.

Spiaggia del Morto

This gorgeous golden-sand beach nestles between steep hillsides covered in junipers, lentisks and rockroses shelving into the clear emerald-green water of a small bay.

There are no facilities here so you need to bring your own food and drinks.

Spiaggia del Morto is located around 2km south of Chia.

More about Chia beaches… and how to get to Chia

Costa Paradiso Beaches

Sardinia's Costa Paradiso is located on the north coast of Sardinia and stretches for arount 70km (43mi) from Santa Teresa di Gallura in the north to the small town of Castelsardo on the west coast.

This stunning coastline is an alternative to the more crowded and expensive Costa Smeralda.

Sunbathe on a choice of long, unspoiled white-sand beaches that gently shelve into calm turquoise waters framed by scenic coves and a dramatic wind-sculpted rocky landscape along the northern coast near Capo Testa.

Nearby Portobello offers villas, hotels and a restaurant. The town of Santa Teresa di Gallura offers a superb golden-sand beach framed by rocky headlands and the entire region is popular for windsurfing, scuba diving and fishing.

Costa Smeralda and Porto Torres are about an hour’s drive away.

The best beaches on Sardinia's Costa Paradiso, include…

La Pelosa Beach

Guarded by a 17th century Spanish watchtower, this sugar-white beach shelves into crystalline shallow water that contains every shade of turquoise imaginable.

Swim and snorkel among colourful fish and take in the views across to tiny Piana Island and nearby Asinara Island – now a national park but once the site of a high-security prison used to confine Mafiosi.

Facilities include sun umbrellas, a café and restaurant. La Pelosa is located less than 2km from Stintino.

Badesi Beach

Pick your own spot to sunbathe on this 8km-long white-sand beach that flows inland creating a series of sand dunes scattered with lentisks (evergreen shrubs) and groves of juniper trees.

This vast beach is often windy and is best known for its good surfing conditions. There are no facilities here so you need to take your own food and drinks.

Badesi Beach is located 2km from the Badesi township.

Platamona Beach

Unwind on this long stretch of golden sand backed by a walkway at the centre, with vast sand dunes covered by lentisks and framed by pinaster forests at each end of the beach.

Sunbathe close to the beach amenities or pick a more secluded spot at the far end of the beach. Facilities include snack bars, restaurants and nearby accommodation.

The beach is located in front of Platamona township.

Marina di Sorso

Swim in crystal clear water and relax on the golden sand of this long beach located along the Gulf of Asinara between Punta Tramontana and Platamona.

Facilities include refreshment kiosks, beach umbrellas and hire boats.

More about Costa Paradiso beaches… and how to get to Costa Paradiso

Costa Rei Beaches

The east coast region of Sardinia around Costa Rei is best known for its crystal clear water, natural rock formations and long golden-sand beaches fringed by pine groves.

Marina Rei Beach

Pick your own spot to sunbathe on this 8km-long white sand beach that shelves into mainly shallow water perfect for swimming.

The beach is bordered by low sand dunes and a lagoon, creating an environment for various marsh wildlife.

Facilities include beach umbrellas, a café and various water sports including rubber dinghies, windsurf, kayaks and pedal boats.

Marina Rei Beach is on the Costa Rei, around 11km from Villasimius and is accessed by numerous small side streets.

Cala Pira Beach

Make your own footprints on this pristine white-sand beach that shelves into a clear turquoise bay and is framed beneath a juniper-covered hillside and Spanish watchtower.

After a swim, hike up to the ancient nuraghi tower that overlooks the bay. Facilities include a kiosk selling sandwiches, ice creams, snacks and cold drinks. Cala Pira is located 11km from Villasimius.

More about Costa Rei beaches… and how to get to Costa Rei

Costa Smeralda Beaches

With its crystal clear turquoise waters, countless coves shimmering with white-sand beaches, unique granite rock formations and rugged mountains covered with olive trees and native vegetation, Sardinia’s Costa Smeralda is one of the world’s most beautiful natural environments and a firm favourite with honeymoon couples.

Costa Smeralda’s best beaches, include…

Spiaggia del Principe

Unwind on one of Sardinia’s best beaches – a long crescent of soft white sand framed by macchia (native shrub) hillsides and lapped by the clear turquoise water of a secluded cove.

There are no facilities here so you need to take your own food and drinks.

Spiaggia del Principe is located 1.6km east of Romazzino on the northeast coast and is accessed by car followed by a short walk.

Liscia Ruja Beach

Pick your own spot to sunbathe on the soft white sand of this gorgeous half-moon shaped beach that sits between hillsides covered in juniper and olive trees and fronts a picture-perfect cove.

The beach is 500m in length and turns a pinkish tinge by the water’s edge.

Sea conditions here are often perfect for kite and wind surfing. Nearby facilities include bars, restaurants, cafes and accommodation options.

Liscia Ruja is located 22km from Olbia on the Cala di Volpe.

Romazzino Beach

Unwind on this soft white-sand beach that nestles in front of an idyllic bay framed by vegetation-covered hillsides.

Facilities include umbrellas, sun beds, beachside bars and a range of nearby accommodation.

Romazzino Beach is located 2km northeast of Cala di Volpe and is easily accessed by car.

Isola dei Gabbiani

This small island sits just offshore of Costa Smeralda and is a haven for windsurfers and surfers.

Access is via a short bridge lined with board-hire shops.

Capriccioli Beach

Unwind on this picture-perfect stretch of white sand that shelves into the shallow waters of a turquoise bay that offers perfect swimming conditions for children.

The beach is divided by enormous round granite rocks and is overlooked by hillsides covered in lentisks, rockroses, olives groves and pine trees. Facilities include beach umbrellas, sun beds and a cafe.

Capriccioli is located near Cala di Volpe, around 28km north of the Costa Smeralda.

La Cinta

Discover your own spot on one of Sardinia’s longest and widest beaches, famous for its silky white sand and age-old stands of juniper trees.

The 5km-long crescent of sand sits between a turquoise bay and large sand dunes that mask a marshland and lagoon that is home to many species of wildlife.

Go swimming, scuba diving and surfing (boards for hire and lessons are available). Or hike the sand dunes and spot pink flamingos, coots, turns, red herons and mallards in the lagoon.

Facilities include umbrellas, sun beds and a café, as well as surfboard and pedal boat.

More about Costa Smeralda… and how to get to Costa Smeralda

Orosei Beaches

The Gulf of Orosei – on the east coast of Sardinia – offers a picture-perfect 40km-long coastline indented with grottos, inlets and coves fringed by gorgeous sugar-white beaches.

The picture is completed with a backdrop of soaring limestone cliffs and hillsides covered in forests of oak, juniper and native shrub.

The best beaches on the Gulf of Orosei, include…

Cala Luna Beach

For many, this is the best beach in Sardinia – a gorgeous 700m-long crescent of white sand sprinkled with tiny pink pebbles, nestling between rocky hillsides and the turquoise waters of the Gulf of Orosei.

Explore some of the six beachfront caves that lie beneath the rocky slopes of Pta Su Masongiu (115m) and look out for endangered monk seals in the nearby Grotta del Bue Marino, the largest and most dramatic of the many beautiful grottos that indent this 40km-long coastline. Woods of pink oleanders stand behind the beach.

Facilities include beach bars, nearby accommodation, and water sports equipment for hire, such as snorkelling gear, skis and kayaks.

Cala Luna is located 7km south of Cala Gonone on the east coast of Sardinia. The beach is accessible by foot along stone mule tracks or by water taxi from Cala Gonone.

Cala Fuili Beach

Dig your toes into the soft white sand of this gorgeous beach, which lies between thick juniper trees and the limpid turquoise waters of the Gulf of Orosei.

Other than during the month of August, this beach is generally empty and perfect for a secluded picnic. There are no facilities.

Cala Fuili is located 1km from Cala Gonone on the east coast near Cala Luna and is easy to reach on foot and by car.

Cala Sisine Beach

Pick your own stop to sunbathe on this stunning white-sand beach that faces a deep blue sea and is framed by two steep hills covered in maquis (scrubland vegetation). There are no facilities on this secluded beach.

Cala Sisine is located between Cala Luna and Cala Biriola, half an hour’s walk from the nearest car park or by boat from Arbatax, Santa Maria Navarrese and Cala Gonone.

Cala Mariolu Beach

Pick your own spot to sunbathe on this spectacularly scenic beach – a narrow crescent of soft white sand mixed with tiny pink pebbles that sits between soaring cliffs and the azure blue of a tranquil bay overlooking the Gulf of Orosei. The beach and seabed are scattered with huge white limestone boulders.

Take your own food and drink, as there are no facilities on this pristine, secluded beach. Snorkel or dive the crystal clear waters and explore the nearby caves.

Cala Mariolu can be accessed by land after a long hike but is best reached by boat from Arbatax, Santa Maria Navarrese or Cala Gonone.

Cala Golorite Beach

Discover this gorgeous white-sand beach nestled between snow-white marble rocks, sheer cliffs and a stunning multi-coloured blue and green sea.

Freshwater springs under the water create a stratum of slightly cooler water, and a 120m-tall stone arch soars from the sea in this scenic locale.

Cala Golorite Beach is located 3km beyond the Monte Santo headland and is best accessed by boat from Cala Gonone as it is an hour’s walk from the nearest car park.

More about Orosei beaches

Ogliastra Beaches

Unwind on the stunning east coast of Ogliastra, which is renowned for its natural beauty. Discover magnificent white-sand beaches, secluded inlets, cliffs and rocky hills covered in Gennargentu forests, Holm oaks, juniper and yew trees.

The best beaches on the Ogliastra coast, include…

Torre di Bari Beach

Pick your own spot to sunbathe on this wide beach of soft white sand fringed by green pine trees, lapped by deep blue seas and overlooked by an ancient Aragonese tower.

Facilities include a beach bar, sun beds and a large parking area. Torre di Bari is located 5km east of Bari Sardo.

Su Sirboni Beach

This beautiful white-sand beach is framed by lush vegetation and red-brown cliffs and faces a pretty bay of crystal clear turquoise water.

Su Sirboni Beach is located around 6km east of Bari Sardo and is easily reached by car followed by a short walk along the cliffs.

Lido di Orri Beach

Dig your toes into the soft sugar-white sand of this pine-fringed beach that shelves into crystal clear shallow turquoise water.

Facilities include a beach bar and a variety of waters sports, including rubber dinghies, jet skis, pedal boats and kayaks. Lido di Orri Beach is located 4km south of Tortoli.

Tancau Beach

This narrow strip of white sand lies between soaring bush-covered hills and the shimmering turquoise waters of a pretty bay. Facilities include food and drink kiosks, pedal boats and jet skis.

Tancau Beach is located 3km east of Lotzorai.

More about Ogliastra beaches

Pula Beaches

The region of Pula on the south coast of Sardinia is home to some of the island’s finest beaches, framed by coves and cliffs and overlooked by medieval Spanish towers.

The best beaches in Pula, include…

Nora Beach

Unwind on this white-sand beach framed by a rocky headland where well preserved 9th century BC ruins stand.

Swim in the shallow water and go scuba diving in the clear turquoise waters of the bay. Then hike along the narrow causeway to the promontory of Capo di Pula and explore the ancient fortress.

Facilities include beach umbrellas, sun loungers and peddle boat rental as well as a café and restaurant.

Nora Beach is located 3km south of Pula.

Porto d’Agumu Beach

Pick your own spot to sunbathe on this long crescent of white sand that shelves into the clear waters of a deep blue bay.

Stroll along the soft white sand to the nearby ruins of a Roman amphitheatre and visit the twin Spanish watchtowers that stand guard at either end of the beach.

Check out the juniper-scented Chia Dunes, which lie only a few kilometres away. Porto d’Agumu

Beach is located near Pula on Sardinia’s southern tip.

More about Pula beaches… and how to get to Pula

Villasimius Beaches

The east coast region of Sardinia around Villasimius offers numerous turquoise bays fringed by long, white-sand beaches overlooked by ancient Spanish towers.

Check out the soft white sand of Notteri Beach, a stunning beach popular for swimming, surfing and scuba fishing.

The best beaches in Villasimius, include…

Notteri Beach

Sink your toes into the soft white sand of this stunning beach popular for swimming, surfing and scuba fishing.

Sunbathe on the beach then admire the pink flamingos at the beachside lake. Facilities include umbrellas, sun lounges, pedal boats for hire, a café and restaurants.

Notteri is located close to Villasimius and enjoys a lively nightlife.

Simius Beach

Pick your own spot to unwind on this 7km-long beach that stretches in front of Villasimius town. Simius is perfect for long walks and swimming in the crystal clear waters of the bay.

Facilities include several café-kiosks, beach umbrellas, sun loungers and boats for rent.

Porto Sa Ruxi Beach

Choose from three white-sand beaches separated by steep rocky slopes and schist cliffs covered in maquis and facing the clear aquamarine waters of a small sheltered bay. Facilities include beach umbrellas, sun loungers and a café.

Porto Sa Ruxi Beach is located 34km from Villasimius.

Porto Giuncu Beach

Discover one of Sardinia’s most magnificent beaches – a brilliant white-sand beach that shelves into crystal clear water.

Facilities include beach umbrellas, rental boats and the Timi Ama Sofitel hotel, where you can relax with a cool drink.

The nearby saltwater lake of Timi Ama offers the chance to spot pink flamingos. Porto Giuncu Beach is located on southeast side of Capo Carbonara.

Campu Longu Beach

Relax on the soft white sand of this long and unspoiled beach that gently shelves into calm turquoise waters. The beach is bordered by low cliffs covered with bush and is popular for horse riding and windsurfing.

Facilities include a cafe, beach umbrellas, sun beds and various water sports equipment such as windsurfers, pedal boats and water skis.

Campu Longu is located near Villasimius and offers various accommodation options nearby.

More about Villasimius beaches… and how to get to Villasimius

Where to stay in Sardinia

Sardinia offers an outstanding choice of luxurious accommodation options for couples celebrating a honeymoon or romantic getaway, including the following hotels…

Forte Village Resort - Hotel Castello
Location: Santa Margherita di Pula
Rating: 5-star
Prices: from AUD1193 per double room
Description: Forte Village Resort - Il Castello is set directly on the coast of Pula and offers luxurious rooms with a balcony. The resort includes a spa and wellness centre, and a water park. The spacious rooms are furnished in traditional Sardinian style, and offer an LCD TV and individually controlled air conditioning. Some rooms include a small living area with sofa bed. This Forte Village offers 21 restaurants and bars offering international cuisine and Sardinian dishes, for lunch and dinner. Buffet breakfast is served by the outdoor swimming pool. Il Castello's private beach is equipped with sunbeds and parasols. Tennis courts, a football field, a diving centre, and a beach volley court are available. The staff can assist you arranging transfers, shuttles and excursions.

Hotel La Villa del Re
Location: Castiadas
Rating: 5-star
Prices: from AUD858 per double room
Description: Featuring a private beach along the Mediterranean Sea, the adults-only La Villa del Re offers a variety of water sport facilities. The hotel also offers an outdoor swimming pool, restaurant, and bar. The elegant, air-conditioned rooms and suites all have a balcony or patio. They come with satellite TV, a minibar and safety deposit box. Each private bathroom includes a bathrobe, slippers and free toiletries. Guests can enjoy a daily buffet breakfast, with sweet and savoury dishes, at the restaurant. They can also enjoy water sport activities, such as windsurfing, scuba diving, snorkelling and canoeing. La Villa del Re is located just 10 minutes' drive from the towns of Cala Sinzias and Costa Rei. Villasimius is a 20-minute drive away and Cagliari Airport is 1 hour's drive from the hotel.

Hotel Marinedda Thalasso & Spa
Location: Costa Rossa
Rating: 5-star
Prices: from AUD527 per double room
Description: The romantic 5-star Hotel Marinedda offers a Thalasso centre & SPA. All rooms are decorated with chestnut wood beams, wrought iron fittings and valuable hand-crafted works of art with garden or sea views. Every room looks out onto a veranda furnished with two deckchairs (or two chairs and a coffee table) and has a bathroom with shower, hairdryer, air conditioning, telephone, TV, safe, minibar, bathrobes for adults and beach towels. The Hotel Marinedda offers five different restaurants, each with its own unique culinary experience. Facilities include free Wi-fi, flood-lit tennis courts, mini-basketball, archery, yoga and a fully-equipped gym. Windsurfing and diving courses are also available, along with equipment hire, dinghy, canoe and pedalò hire, pleasure boat and sports fishing charters. The Hotel Marinedda Thalasso & SPA is set on a gently sloping promontory, just one kilometre from Isola Rossa, a historic fishing village that looks out over the north-western coast of Sardinia, better known as the Costa Rossa, and near the historic tourist town of Castelsardo.

La Bitta Arbatax
Location: Porto Frailis, Àrbatax
Rating: 4-star
Prices: from AUD1088 per double room
Description: Hotel La Bitta offers wellness facilities, white-sand beaches and transparent waters in a peaceful location walking distance from Arbatax centre. The comfortable double rooms differ from one another in small but unique, exquisite details. Their furniture has a typical Mediterranean Style, characterized by hand-painted majolica and fine fabrics. The private bathroom is equipped with shower stall and hair dryer. This beautiful villa has its own large outdoor pool set close to the sea and fully equipped with sun loungers and umbrellas. La Bitta’s private beach is just steps away from your comfortable room. Enjoy stunning views of the sea and Sardinia’s rocky cliffs from Hotel La Bitta’s gardens and the terrace bar and panoramic restaurant. Two restaurants and an American bar can be found on site. Breakfast is an extensive buffet. Professional staff at Hotel La Bitta are pleased to organise unforgettable trips and tours for you. Go on yacht cruises, dinghy trips up the coast and tours inland on Sardinia’s famous green train.

Hotel Galanias
Location:Bari Sardo
Rating: 4-star
Prices: from AUD233 per double room
Description: Set on a hill on Sardinia’s east coast, the 4-star Hotel Galanias features an outdoor pool and a sun terrace. It offers air-conditioned rooms, just a 10-minute walk from the beach. Set in 3 buildings, these Sardinian-style rooms come with a minibar, flat-screen TV, and locally handmade furnishings. Each includes a private bathroom with a hairdryer and free toiletries, while some have sea views. A buffet-style continental breakfast is prepared daily and a bar is available for drinks and snacks. Regional and Mediterranean specialties are served at the traditional restaurant. Staff at Galanias Hotel can organise boat tours as well as pilates, photography and yoga classes on site. Guests are provided with a free beach towel on arrival. Wi-Fi is free at reception, where you can also rent more towels, the bar and on the terrace by the pool. The property offers free private parking and is 4 km from the centre of Bari Sardo. Arbatax harbour is a 20-minute drive away, where ferries link with Olbia, Cagliari, Civitavecchia and Genoa.

Best time to honeymoon in Sardinia

The best time to visit Sardinia for a beach holiday is during summer from mid-June through to mid-September.

However, anytime from mid-May to mid-October is good for a range of outdoor activities. April and May are good months for hiking, exploring the island and visiting cities, so avoiding the intense heat of summer.

Sardinia has a Mediterranean climate with hot, sunny summers and mild, wet winters.

The south of the island is drier than the north, which sees a a lot more rain in winter, especially during November and December.

For more climate info: Sardinia Weather Guide

Getting to Sardinia

Sardinia is the largest island in the Mediterranean after Sicily, and is easily accessibly by sea and air, with daily flights from all the major Italian and European capital centres.

Sardinia lies 187km (116mi) to the west of the Italian mainland and just 16km (10mi) south of the French island of Corsica.

Sardinia has three international airports, which offer a choice of flights from all the major European airlines as well as from several low-cost carriers, especially during the summer tourist season.

Olbia Costa Smeralda Airport (OLB) is located 4km (2.4mi) from the town centre of Olbia, in northwest Sardinia. A regular shuttle bus connects the airport and Olbia’s centre every 20-30 minutes, a 10-minute ride.

Cagliari Elmas Airport (CAG) is located about 7km (4mi) from the city of Cagliari, in southern Sardinia. Local trains connect the airport to the centre of Cagliari in around 10 minutes.

Alghero–Fertilia Airport (AOH) is located around 8km (5mi) north of the city of Alghero, in northeast Sardinia. A regular shuttle bus runs from the airport to Alghero and other towns on the island.

From outside Europe, the most convenient route to Sardinia often requires a connecting flight from a European city, such as Rome or Milan, to Cagliari, Olbia or Alghero airports – depending on which resort you're planning on visiting. Each airport receives daily flights from all the major European cities.

By ferry, the east coast port of Olbia, which offers easy access to the chic resorts of Costa Esmeralda and Porto Rotondo, is just seven hours from Civitavecchia on the Italian mainland, around 80km north of Rome. Ferries also run to and from the capital, Cagliari.

More information on how to get to Sardinia

How to get around Sardinia

Hiring a car or motorcycle provides the most freedom to explore Sardinia's rural villages, mountainous hinterland and mainly uncrowded beaches.

The public bus and train system offers a fairly inexpensive way to get around the island's more popular regions, but elsewhere public transport can be time-consuming and difficult. Services also slow to a trickle during the low season.

Taxis are available but expensive. Bikes are available for hire in the main tourist areas.

More information on how to get around Sardinia

Latest update: Sardinia: 5 August, 2022