We have just returned from a flying visit to Sardinia and the three-night experience has left me exhausted, at least a kilo heavier, and madly in love with this wonderful Italian island!
A mere 1 hour and 20 minute flight from our base in Austria, the island of Sardinia is perfect for a weekend getaway, and if you enjoy Italian food and wines as much as we do, you are in for a real treat!
Despite the fact that the island is just stirring from its winter hibernation, the friendly restaurants and sea front cafes are beginning to dust off the cobwebs in preparation for the start of their summer season in mid May, and there is plenty going on for those looking for action.
We spent most of our time wandering around the cobbled streets of the old town, eating pizza, pasta and gelato, while savouring the fine wines made on the island. Italy is well-known for its culinary delights and these guys certainly know how to make pasta! I now understand the true meaning of “al dente” and realise I have been eating overcooked pasta for the past 30 something years… Oh well, you live and learn as they say!
The wines in Sardinia are exceptional and one particular grape – Cannonau (otherwise known as Grenache in France or Garnacha in Spain) tickled our taste buds in all the right places! Rich, full-bodied and often served in a litre carafe, this beautiful red wine complements all Italian food and is the perfect afternoon drink while sitting on the balcony admiring the view.
There are numerous day trips and excursions to enjoy in Sardinia, but as we were only there for three days we decided to take a boat ride to the “Grotta di Nettuno” and visit the picturesque village of Stintino.
Grotta di Nettuno or Neptune’s Cave is a stalactite cave set approximately 30km from the port of Alghero. Discovered in the 18th century this magnificent grotto is well worth a visit, although at this time of year the boat ride is bumpy to say the least, so my tip of the day would have to be – skip breakfast!
Stintino is a charming village set on the northern coast of Sardinia and has one of the most stunning beaches I have ever seen in Europe. Pure white sand, crystal clear turquoise water, and a fantastic panorama across the protected island of Asinara, this was undoubtedly the highlight of our trip.
I always wanted to go and now I can finally say I have been to Italy – another country crossed off the bucket list and added onto the ‘places to revisit list’!