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With more beaches per kilometre than any other part of Italy, remote regions filled with wild woods and mountains, and a rich architectural and cultural heritage, Sardinia is a stunner of a holiday destination.
Whether you’re dipping your toes in the warm waters of the Gulf of Orosei or padding along the soft sand at Costa Rei, the first thing you’ll notice is the beaches. The stark contrast of white sand against impossibly turquoise waters, Sardinia even gives Caribbean a run for its money.
Beyond the beaches, holidays to Sardinia offer a fascinating window into history. The cities of Alghero in the north and Cagliari in the south have storied pasts that stretch back almost 3,000 years to the Phoenicians.
Remains from this era, as well as earlier prehistoric settlements, and Carthaginian, Roman and Byzantine civilisations, are very well preserved. Some 7,000 round tower-fortresses called nuraghi date from around 1,500BC, and at sites such as Mont’e Prama in the west coast’s Sinis area, giant stone heads attest to the skills of Sardinia’s ancient civilisations.
There’s plenty for wildlife lovers too. The San Teodoro lagoon south of Olbia is home to many beautiful birds and a large population of flamingos. Near Alghero, the 50,000 hectares of the Porto Conte regional park house 35 identified species of mammals, as well as 150 birds, and spectacular spots such as the Grotta di Nettuno offer coastal caves featuring a lake and enormous stalactites.
Inland, the Giara di Gesturi plateau in central Sardinia is the natural habitat for the rare wild horses that were first recorded here 10,000 years ago.
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