Western Sardinia

Duration: 1 week

Distance : 180 miles

A challenging itinerary, recommended to experienced sailors capable of interpreting weather bulletins and not being surprised by the north-westerly wind in some exposed roadsteds. You will be astonished by the historical and natural ‘pearls’ that can be found in this little-known part of Sardinia
 

 

DISTANCES:

Carloforte - C.Verde - Tharros/Torregrande. 44 miles
Torregrande - Alghero. 42 miles
From Alghero to Stintino. 38 miles
Stintino - Bosa. 50 miles
Bosa - I. Mal di Ventre - Cala Domestica. 53 miles
Cala Domestica- Periplo San Pietro. 25 miles

COSTA VERDE
 
Departing from the Isle of San Pietro, a very charming itinerary starts, along an unusual part of Sardinia. Forget postcard pictures: after leaving the long beach of Funtanamare on your right, the spit of sand rises and turns into a rocky cliff overlooking the sea and scattered with juniper trees bent by the north-westerly wind. A stone gate is set, almost nestled, in the cliff: it is the ancient entrance to the Porto Flavia caves, which in past times were a precious source of employment and wealth for the entire Sulcis Iglesiente area. Mining activities are over, but the charm of this area lives on. The Pan di Zucchero stacks,  characterised by deep, sandy bottoms, are a pleasant stop-over while sailing north. The fiord of Cala Domestica and Buggerru are two other unmissable locations (Buggerru will only be accessible, however, when the layer of sand blocking its port is finally swept).
The Costa Verde (www.lacostaverde.it) owes its name (Green Coast) to the colour of the vegetation that grows in between the white cliffs. The coast ends in Arbus and in the Oristano area. Ponds, flamingos, and lovely roasted mullet will be the perfect frame and food to enjoy as you arrive in Tharros, set against the beautiful setting of the Phoenician archaeological site.
THARROS (www.tharros.info) - Reaching the coast by boat is impossible as the Punic ruins extend underwater; the area is limited by a series of buoys. It is advisable to plan a visit reaching this location from ashore, after mooring at the Marina di Torregrande, which is very well equipped and allows to stop over and gather your ideas and emotions together before cruising up to the northernmost tip of the coast.  

MARINA DI TORREGRANDE (www.marineoristanesi.it) - Offering many boating and tourist services, it can be reached dialling number +39 0783 22189 or on VHF, channel 9.

PROTECTED MARINE AREA SINIS MAL DI VENTRE www.areamarinasinis.it
After Cape San Marco, the Protected Marine Area Sinis Mal di Ventre begins, which includes the island of the same name and extends over a 25-hectare area, divided into three different protected zones to ensure sustainable exploitation. The area cannot be reached from the west (A zone of the reserve, just like the rock Scoglio del Catalano, six miles south), but it is possible to cast anchor in Cala dei Pastori, in the C zone. The northern border is Capo Mannu

CAPO MANNU - It is considered one of the best surfing spots in the Mediterranean sea: when strong north-westerly wind blows, the waves may reach 5 metres in height! From Capo Mannu, the dazzling white beach of Is Arenas departs. As you sail along it (paying attention to some surfacing rocks), you can catch a glimpse of Santa Caterina di Pittinurri and of the magnificent natural arc of S’Archittu.

S’ARCHITTU (www.sarchittu.net) – This 15-metre-high arc of natural rock is very much loved by extreme divers and has been the setting of several advertising campaigns and film shootings.  

BOSA (www.bosa.it) – A truly unique location in Sardinia, Bosa rises along the river Temo, which can be cruised on a tender after mooring your boat at the Bosa Marina floating pontoons (Nautica Pirisi, +39 0785.375550). Its low, colourful houses, the Spanish-style historical centre, the imposing Malaspina Castle, still preserving wonderful medieval frescoes, and a ride on the train Trenino Verde (www.treninoverde.com) will offer a pleasant break from your all-nature itinerary  

ALGHERO (www.alghero.org) is a fortified city that was built on the sea, and to the sea owes its name. Indeed, it looks like the name Alghero derives from the large amounts of leaves of Posidonia Oceanica (mistakenly called an alga) that can be found along the sandy beaches, especially after heavy seas due to south-westerly wind. Alghero was founded in the 12th century by the Genoese Doria family; however, in the 14th century it was conquered by the Catalan-Aragonese, who broke into the fortified town on 31 August 1353. In the following year the town was repopulated by people coming from various Catalan regions; since then, Alghero has preserved the language and traditions of that part of Spain. The monuments, the churches of the old town – which is scattered with imposing towers and bastions -, as well as the magnificent palaces and, particularly, the slender bell towers of the Cathedral of SANTA MARIA and the church of SAN FRANCESCO, still bear clear traces of the “Gothic-Catalan” style. “BARCELONETA”: this is how Alghero is affectionately called by the Catalans; with its sea, its history, and its people, Alghero was the first capital of tourism in Sardinia since the end of the 19th century, and is still one of the island’s most popular tourist destinations.

PORTO CONTE- The bay lying between the Alghero roadsted and the Capo Caccia cliff is one of the quietest mooring areas along the Riviera del Corallo (which owes its name to the large amount of coral that can be found in the depths of the sea) and is also ideal to moor your boat in its marina. Porto Conte belongs to the Protected Marine Area of Capo Caccia – Isola Piana (www.ampcapocaccia.it) and is very much appreciated for the many sports opportunities it offers.

CAPOCACCIA – The imposing cliff bounding the Alghero roadsted is one of the highest in Italy. With its 186 metres above sea level, it can be seen from a distance of 34 miles. It stands between the Protected Marine Area of Capo Caccia – Isola Piana (www.ampcapocaccia.it), which also includes the Bay of Porto Conte, and the charming caves Grotte di Nettuno (www.grottedinettuno.it), the best known in Sardinia.

STINTINO – The lovely town of Stintino overlooks the Gulf of Asinara, on the north-eastern coast of Sardinia. The town was founded in 1885, when the families of the fishermen that lived on the isle of Asinara were turned out to make room for the penal colony and had to re-settle down in Capo Falcone. Its name derives from the Sardinian word “s'isthintinu", i.e. narrow passageway, the way the narrow fiord on which the village rose was called. The two ports –Portu Mannu and Portu Minori – are equipped for nautical tourism.

L’ASINARA – A true nature haven, L’Asinara is well known for having hosted a penal colony for a long time, a fact that helped preserve its unpolluted nature: wonderful coasts, colonies of rare and wild animals like the famous white Asinara Donkey, extraordinary light-blue sea shades. You can land in Fornelli, in the southern gulf of the island, close to the buildings of the former penal colony. Since this is a National Park, private boats need to be authorised by the Park Authority (Ente Parco Nazionale dell’Asinara, tel. +39 079 503388 www.parcoasinara.org )

WEATHER

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The climate is typically Mediterranean, rain is not frequent and mainly limited to the winter season. The north-westerly wind keeps temperatures cool, and sailing is recommended to experienced crews only and along the north-south direction.

PRIVATE MARINAS:

-    Marine Oristanesi – Torregrande +39 0783.22189 VHF 09 www.marineoristanesi.it
-    Nautica Pirisi - Bosa +39 0785.375550 VHF 27
-    Pontili Ambrosio – Alghero +39 330.318156 VHF 16 www.cantierenauticoambrosio.com
-    Marina Aquatica – Alghero +39 333.2074951 VHF 9/16/74 www.aquaticasardegna.it
-    Marina di Sant’Elmo – Alghero +39 3332214342 VHF 9 www.marinadisantelmo.it
-    Cala Tramariglio – Porto Conte + 39 079.946638
-    Portu Mannu - Stintino +39 079.523693

FUEL STATIONS

-    Marine Oristanesi – Torregrande c/o northern dock +39 0783.22262
-    Nautica Pirisi - Bosa Gasolio mobile: ask the port management + 39 0785.375550
-    Alghero: fuel station on the left pier (with your back to the sea)
-    Portu Mannu - Stintino +39 079.523092

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