The Maddalena Archipelago

Rent an inflatable rib and head over to the beautiful Maddalena Archipelago where the uninhabited islands have pink sand beaches and the water is as clear as any in the world.

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Harriet, Kate L and Victoria are here to help give you the inside track.

Key Stats

Flight from London London

2:15 hrs

Time Difference

GMT +1 hr

A relative newcomer to the world of tourism, the Maddalena Archipelago really only arrived on the travel map after the closure of a huge NATO naval base there in 2008. Thanks to this lack of historic tourism, the Maddalena Archipelago remains a beautifully unspoilt and secluded corner of Italy. With seven large islands and fifty five smaller islets dotted around, this is a wonderful spot for discovering hidden coves and perfectly pristine (and empty to boot) beaches. The water surrounding the islands is known for its clarity and purity, making the Maddalena Archipelago every snorkeller's paradise - perhaps even one of the best spots for it in Europe. It could be the Caribbean, apart from the water temperature which is fresh in spring and autumn and only really warm in the height of summer. That said it is hugely inviting, and you can snorkel in the crystal clear water and have a picnic lunch on a deserted beach.

Garibaldi lived out his days in exile on one of the archipelago's larger islands, Caprera, after helping to reunify Italy, and he couldn't have picked a better spot to put his feet up. If you fancy a bit of historical learning amidst the obligatory sun-bathing and snorkelling, there remains a house-museum on Caprera.


Original Highlight

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Nick, Original Traveller

Where to stay

Hotel pool at Hotel Cervo, luxury hotel in Italy

Hotel Cervo

The Cervo Hotel is situated in the centre of Porto Cervo Village - the heart of the Costa Smeralda - and facing the famous Piazzetta.

Forte Village

Forte Village

Voted the ‘World’s Leading Resort’ for 13 years running, the Forte Village Resort in Sardinia pretty much has it all.

Su Gologone

Su Gologone

In the heart of Sardinia, surrounded by ancient olive groves and vineyards, enveloped by the aromatic smells of rosemary, myrtle and bougainvillea, stands Su Gologone Experience Hotel, with its time-honoured walls and legendary hospitality. Originally a favourite local restaurant serving quality traditional dishes, Su Gologone became too irresistible to its patrons to the extent that guest rooms were added and the hotel was born.


Chia Laguna Resort

Chia Laguna Resort, on the stunning southern coastline of Sardinia, consists of three hotels booked on a half board basis and a range of villas that pull off that most difficult of tricks – appealing to both families and couples (although couples might want to avoid the school holidays!)

Blue Deer

Blue Deer

Giorgia and Stefano Barbini, the deeply stylish owners of the equally stylish San Lorenzo Mountain Lodge in the Dolomites, have an eye for detail that even we are in awe of. They are purists, perfectionists and now, with the launch of Blue Deer (to the Mountain Lodge’s White Deer), a beautiful 74ft catamaran, they are also visionaries.

Grand Hotel Poltu Quatu

Grand Hotel Poltu Quatu

Grand Hotel Poltu Quatu sits on the north coast of Sardinia, overlooking the clear waters of the La Maddalena archipelago, and provides a secret escape for those seeking tranquillity.

Start creating your tailored trip today

Harriet, Kate L and Victoria are our Sardinia experts and as seasoned travellers they have the inside track on the most memorable adventures.

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