Tucked away on the Northern coast of Sardinia, the area of Costa Smeralda covers 55km of pristine beaches and coastal landscape. It's an area of outstanding beauty that has recently seen an upmarket and sophisticated crowd flock to its shores to enjoy decadent living at extremely high prices. Whilst the tranquillity and privacy of the area are still some of its main attractions, it is no longer just these stretches of white powdery sands that the area has to offer visitors. From the moment you arrive in port and dock next to the array of magnificent yachts, you'll get a sense of its decadent appeal.
There are a wide variety of seasonal activities, sights and attractions for visitors to the area to enjoy, including sailing regattas, polo matches and vintage car rallies. There is something for all tastes, not to mention the beautiful beaches and small villages dotted around that are worth a visit. Here are some of the main must-see events and attractions:
Read More Li Muri and Li Lolghi
Li Muri and Li Lolghi are archeological sites located near to Costa Smeralda. These tombs and their necropolis date back to 3000 BC Similar to the world famous site of Stonehenge, they feature concentric circles of stones along with Neolithic graves. It is an important historical and cultural site and well worth a visit.
Windsurfing and sailing are particularly popular activities in this region thanks to the great wind conditions the coast enjoys, so there are numerous sailing schools in the area that cater for all levels of ability and experience. The island is also host to a variety of sailing regattas, with the famous Super Yacht Regatta coming to Costa Smeralda's shore in June. Visitors can watch some of the world's most luxurious yachts compete against one another opening the season during this event.
Bike hire is a great way to visit the nearby region of Porto Cervo. You can join a guided tour of the mountains, which is probably best as there are no roads, or cycle your way along the coastline enjoying the beautiful Sardinian scenery.
Porto Cervo Marina
Porto Cervo marina is a bustling location and worth visiting at dusk. It becomes a playground for the rich and famous and the million dollar yachts are lit up and on display. Take time to meander around the area spotting famous faces, Arabian royalty and Russian elites. Even if you aren't intending to buy anything, you need to spend some time window shopping at the designer boutiques and prepare to be amazed at the prices.
Shopping in Costa Smeralda
Porto Cervo is a mecca for designer label lovers with luxury at every turn. The most famous names can be found here, including Prada, Ralph Lauren and Gucci all nestled within the town's cosy streets. Head to Ezmeralda Bazaar for an eclectic mix of designer and local fashions housed within a well-furnished store. This is an upmarket area that doesn't do chintzy souvenirs well, but if you step off the main streets or head to the surrounding towns and villages, you can find local craftsmen selling their goods at more affordable prices. .
Eating out in Costa Smeralda
Close to the port sits Retrogusto Gourmet which serves authentic Italian and International dishes in a laid-back and traditional setting. You can sit outside on the terrace and enjoy views across the old marina while you dine. The menu is quite extensive but well researched and comes with a wine list to compliment the dishes. For an upmarket evening make a beeline for the Yacht Club in Porto Cervo, where you will be surrounded by film stars and supermodels. The food is a bit pricey here but it's a high end restaurant with fantastic food and famous clientele.