nw coast

 from Alghero to Costa Paradiso

Area Description



Located on the North West coast of Sardinia, Alghero has become increasingly popular in recent years, yet the city still retains its distinctive Catalan character. This derives from the influence of Pedro IV of Aragon who seized control of the town in the mid-fourteenth century and embarked on an intense period of colonization from Spain. Alghero old town was once surrounded by walls ("I BASTIONI"), which today are still intact. Narrow streets paved with granite and cobblestones, where typical houses alternate with historic buildings: Palazzo d'Albis, Palazzo Machin, Civic Theatre, and magnificent churches, the Cathedral of Santa Maria, San Francesco, San Michele, Santa Barbara, etc. Today, Alghero manages to combine its role of a touristic city and a thriving marina. On the North of the marina is located the fine sandy beach of Alghero which provides good bathing opportunities just a short stroll from the historic centre. The streets of downtown are lined with dozens of stores to the delight of shoppers Alghero is famous for its coral, numerous craft shops offering jewelry for all budgets. Alghero offers tourists an endless and varied restaurants, from small and typical "trattoria" to the fancy restaurant. Catalan lobster and paella are a must! Visitors to the city will find that the area around Alghero provides plenty of opportunities for day trips and the best known of these is undoubtedly the cave complex of Grotta di Nettuno (Neptune's Caves). It is one of the most breathtaking in Italy and located only 15 km to the West on the promontory of Capo Caccia.



Further on at the North Western tip of the Island, Stintino is renowned for its stunning beaches. The most popular and worthy is definitely La Pelosa.
Asinara is an Italian island of 52 sq km (20 sq mi) in area. The name in Italian means "donkey-inhabited", but it is thought to derive from the Latin "sinuaria", and meaning sinus-shaped. The island is virtually uninhabited. The Island was used to quarantine the crews of ships that were suspected of having contagious diseases on board. In 1915, Austro-Hungarian prisoners were deported there. It then became an agricultural penitentiary and after the World War II it was well-known to many because it hosted “excellent prisoners”, from the Red Brigade terrorists of the Seventies to members of the mafia in solitary confinement from 1992.
Today, the Island is a National Park protected by strict laws preserving the inestimable treasures of its landscape and fauna, in particular the famous wild Albino donkeys.



Situated in the heart of the Gulf of Asinara, about 30 km from Sassari, Castelsardo is the main town of the Anglona region with about 5000 inhabitants. A place of natural beauty, tourism, traditions, and wonderful works of art, this medieval town is a charming place to spend a holiday between the sea, archaeology and nature. The coastline of Castelsardo is characterised by the trachytic rock typical of the zone and thus offers many rocky reefs overlooking the sea. However, there are also sandy beaches at inlets such as Baia Ostina, East of town, and Punta Tramontana to the West. Other beaches in the vicinity include La Marinedda. Castelsardo is famous worldwide for the production of hand-woven baskets. In the streets of the town, it is not rare to see women at work weaving colourful baskets, or fishermen stitching the traps that are lowered onto the sea floor to catch shellfish. The local production of baskets is characterised by numerous shapes and decorative elements: the most characteristic baskets of Castelsardo are the ones with low borders used in break-baking, and the coffinus used for sweets. Large baskets with a cylindrical or sack or bag shape are used as umbrella stands, magazine holders, or linen hampers. Other baskets have an ornamental function as table centrepieces or trivets, or are hung on the wall, where they decorate and recall the local traditions. Baskets represent one of the first objects that originated as an essential accessory of family life. Together with ceramics, they were produced by the first primitive communities and followed the entire evolution of the human species over the centuries, never varying substantially in their structure or use.