Surroundings: Baja Sardinia and Costa Smeralda

DISCOVERING COSTA SMERALDA

Costa Smeralda, only few kilometres from Baja Sardinia, is part of the coast of Gallura, situated between the Gulf of Arzachena and that of Cugnana, well-known in the whole world for the crystal-clear seawater, for the typical colours of its architecture, the lively nightlife and the high-quality services. This corner of paradise doesn’t owe its name to the colour of the seawater but to the “Costa Smeralda” Consortium, found in 1962 by the Prince Aga Khan, who decided to name this area after Esmeralda Mentasi, the daughter of the owner of the water company San Pellegrino, who used to love swimming in the waters of this part of Sardinia.

The good name of Costa Smeralda comes also from some beautiful natural points, such as Cala Di Volpe with its natural dock and the suggestive beach of the “grande e piccolo Pevero”, known for the two strips of fine sand, divided by a forested promontory of pink rocks.

Besides Costa Smeralda, the area of Baja Sardinia offers many attractions not related to nature: the many shopping streets, fish delicacy tasting in beautiful places like Porto Rotondo, or the several historical sites that surround the district of Arzachena, such as an archaeological site that contains monuments and architectural complexes dated back to the Nuragic age and considered nowadays protected cultural heritage of the Island.

_

Saint Anthony Church - Baja Sardinia

SANT’ANTONIO

The church covered with stone and built thanks to the dedication of a missionary

The small church of Sant’Antonio from Padua, located in the heart of Baja Sardinia, was built thanks to the devotion of Father Giacomini, an art enthusiast, who, after selling all his pieces of art, decided to invest the proceeds on the construction of the church. Next to the building with just one nave raises a bell tower, built with warm shade stones and exposed wood elements. The tower is decorated with several hand carved wooden sculptures and beautiful frescos, realized entirely by the Priest. The mass is celebrated in the church every Sunday.

10m | beside the Hotel

_

Batteria Battistoni - Baja Sardinia

BATTERIA BATTISTONI

The glorious old ruins that overlook the beach of Baja Sardinia

During the IIWW the Batteria Battistoni was one of the most important defence areas of the Italian Navy. The watchtowers and the several small forts along the hill behind the main beach of Baja Sardinia allow to watch from a strategic hidden position the waters where La Maddalena Archipelago and the Strait of Bonifacio are located. Still today, when walking through a path surrounded by vegetation, it is possible to admire the ruins of the barracks.

1km | 10 minutes on foot

_

Stella Maris church - Porto Cervo

PORTO CERVO

A small town and a luxurious holiday destination

Porto Cervo, main attraction of the Costa Smeralda, is a small town in the District of Arzachena, well-known in the whole world for the turquoise water, the suggestive little squares and the typical sinuous shapes of its buildings that remind of ancient theatres. The success of this renowned town lied with the Ismaili Prince Karim Aga Kahn, who made of Porto Cervo the ideal holiday destination for celebrities, wealthy families and the international jet set, who every summer enjoy the nightlife in the most exclusive clubs of the area.

5km | 8 minutes by car

_

Porto Rotondo - Costa Smeralda

PORTO ROTONDO

A colourful and picturesque village, among bridges and modern pieces of art

Porto Rotondo is one of the most well-known and trendy districts of Olbia, chosen as summer residence from stars and sail enthusiasts for its small wonderful bays and the exclusive clubs. The architecture of the village, with its bridges of wood reminds vaguely of Venice. Here the Counts Donà dalle Rose were born and for this reason they chose Porto Rotondo as a tourist port, which became a safe landing place for hundreds of luxurious boats. This location was embellished with the church designed by the artists Cascella e Ceroli.

32km | 33 minutes by car

_

Olbia

OLBIA

A port city full of life and with a great past

Olbia was built in a strategic area, it is the main access point to the Island and the business driver of Gallura. This flourishing city on the beach has a great past that can be seen in the old city centre where several naval relics were found and are now exhibited in the Museum of the Sea, known for having the shape of a big boat. Olbia is appreciated not only for its harbour, where 3 million tourists land every year but also for the shopping, the small markets with handicrafts, the nightlife and the several bars that can be found in the main street, Corso Umberto I.

33km | 35 minutes by car

_

Olbia: Paul the Apostle Church

SAN PAOLO APOSTOLO

The church with a fascinating dome that stands out from the city

The church of San Paolo Apostolo can be found in the city centre of Olbia and was built during the Middle Age on top of the remains of a pagan temple. The building has a main rectangular area with three chapels that gives the church the shape of a cross. The dome was built during the 1963 and decorated with colourful majolica that form a mosaic, which allows visitor to see and reach the church even from long distances. Among the many remains that are kept inside the church it is possible to admire some silver artefacts, such as a halo, and sandals dated back to 1600.

33km | 35 minutes by car

_