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5 minutes guide to Sardinia

Sardinia is a mesmerising island located in the Mediterranean Sea known for its breathtaking natural landscapes with rugged mountains, rolling hills, and pristine beaches with crystal-clear water. Step into the captivating allure of Sardinia, where the enchanting embrace of sunlit landscapes beckons you to embark on a timeless journey through the island's beauty and history.

Our luxury villa rentals are be the perfect base to discover this Mediterranean gem. Sardinia's history begins with interactions with Phoenicians, Punics, and Romans, and it was partly conquered by Carthage. After being part of the Roman Empire, it fell out of centralised rule. Explore Sardinia's ancient wonders at the UNESCO-listed archaeological site of Su Nuraxi in Barumini, featuring well-preserved structures and a fortress dating back 3,500 years.

After the Roman Empire's fall, Sardinia split into four kingdoms. Byzantine influence, waned post the Muslim conquest of Sicily in 827, impacting Sardinian cuisine and architecture. The island became a contested zone among powers like Genoa, Pisa, and the Crown of Aragon. The legacy of these contests is evident in the charming capital of Cagliari. The charming old town, known as Castello, perches atop a hill overlooking the narrow cobblestone streets. Visitors are encouraged to visit the impressive Cagliari Cathedral and enjoy breath-taking panoramic views from the Bastione di Saint Remy.

In 1323, Aragonese forces swiftly conquered Sardinia, ending Pisan control. Until 1720, the Spanish influenced the island's gastronomy, culture, and language. Explore Alghero, celebrated for its Catalan heritage and medieval charm. Wander its cobblestone streets, visit the striking Alghero Cathedral, and savour fresh seafood along the scenic promenade. Don't overlook the nearby Neptune’s Grotto, a remarkable sea cave adorned with otherworldly stalactites.

After 1720, Sardinia was transferred to the Kings of Piedmont in northern Italy. With the establishment of the Kingdom of Italy, orchestrated by the Kings of Piedmont-Sardinia, Sardinia came under Italian rule. Notably, the Day of the Sardinian Vespers on April 28th commemorates a failed uprising against Piedmontese rule. During this event, Sardinian rebels identified outsiders by asking them to pronounce "chickpea" in Sardinian. Though unsuccessful, Sardinia was the second European country after France to experience a homegrown revolution.

Finally, visitors are encouraged to immerse themselves in Sardinia’s captivating landscape – a cause of frustration for occupying armies and states. Visit the stunning landscapes of Gola Su Gorropu, Europe’s deepest canyon, offering breathtaking views or head to the mesmerising Costa Smeralda, famed for its crystal-clear turquoise water. Relax upon the white sands of the beaches of Capriccioli and Spiagga del Principe.

Visitors would be hard-pressed to give Sardinian cuisine a miss, known for its flavourful cured meats and cheeses. Traditional dishes include porceddu (roasted suckling pig) and seadas (a fried pastry filled with cheese and drizzled with honey) and which pairs well with Sardinian local wines like the Vermentino and Cannonau.

Further Reading


Italian Culinary Symphony

Essenza's guide to gastronomic adventures and dining etiquette


Florence's "Wine Windows"

A Whimsical Tale of Tuscany's Vinous Legacy


5 minutes guide to Sicily

Sicily is a captivating island nestled in the heart of the Mediterranean Sea offering a magnificent historical heritage, diverse blend of cultures and breath-taking landscapes.