Take a sailing journey along the pink granite coastline of this fascinating Italian island: relax and explore, enjoy the mouth-watering cuisine and excellent wines, and learn about Sardinia's 4000-year history and traditions. Sardinia with its many offshore islands is a place of dazzling white beaches and sheltered coves backed by rugged hills and farmland cultivated through the ages and all surrounded by emerald green waters.
For years Sardinia has attracted recreational sailors for its steady breezes that make yachting a popular sport on the island, and it's increasingly one of the Mediterranean's 'go to' charter holiday sailing destinations. There’s a well-developed sailing industry infrastructure, with many modern marinas around the coast. Alternate your overnight stops between the convenience of tying up in town and the freedom of dropping anchor in one of countless beautiful coves, and have a very special Italian summer holiday.
A yacht charter in northern Sardinia can also include a part of France, with the equally enticing Corsica lying just to the north.
Sardinia is well served by yacht charter bases. Your first challenge is to decide your point of entry and where, among all the choices, you want your charter to take you. Airports at Olbia and Cagliari provide regular services from Europe, with Alghero in the west another option, particularly if combining your charter with a road trip.
Northern Sardinia is the most popular sailing charter destination, with its Costa Smeralda, Maddalena Archipelago and proximity to Corsica. Towns with charter bases include Olbia, Cannigione and Portisco, to name just three, any one of which is worth spending some time in and around before you set sail.
You’ll want to spend some time exploring La Maddalena Archipelago National Park, where visiting with your own boat/accommodation gives you a huge advantage over day travelers. These islands are simply charming, despite their popularity, where you can enjoy days of excellent sailing and holiday fun.
Back on the mainland coast, cruise the Costa Smeralda (Emerald Coast) and call in at Porto Cervo at the heart of this wealthy part of Sardinia, used for centuries as a meeting point for sailors from near and far. The beaches are the main attraction along tis coast, but there are numerous options for excursions and other activities if looking for adventure as well as holiday relaxation.
Just 20km north of La Maddelina National Park is the French island of Corsica and the port of Bonifacio. This stunning "City of Cliffs" is not to be missed if travelling in the area!
Southern Sardinia is considered a separate cruising ground on a seven day charter - the island stretches some 250km from top to bottom. Marinas at Cagliari (Sardinia’s largest city and capital) and the island municipalities of Carloforte and Sant'Antioco provide options for sailing the region, an equally enjoyable - and quieter - alternative to the north. Exploring the coastline around Chia, with its picture-perfect sandy beaches.
Arbatax on the east coast opens up further options, particularly for an extended cruise north and south.
We had a great time in the Aeolian Islands, and I highly recommend them as a destination. The beauty is that the islands each have a different character and are close to each other. The longest ‘passage’ is about 10 miles, and some are a lot shorter. Two of the largest islands, Vulcano and Lipari, are only 800m apart, but very different! The marinas are well located and were reasonably priced (€70-100 per night) and at Panarea there are only moorings but for €70 you also get a 24/7 water taxi service which was perfect. We found mid / late July to be superb.
David, New Zealand, Aug 16th, 2019
Rating: 5 / 5We found the boat to be nicely designed and very comfortable. The sails were near new and a treat to sail with. The highlight destination was Capri where because of unsettled weather we stayed in the marina. We found a brilliant restaurant in Ana-Capri and enjoyed strolling the narrow streets. San Michelle villa was delightful. Service was 10/10. Mario at the marina went out of his way to help us with ideas advice and making sure we wanted for nothing. Peter, New Zealand, Oct 24th, 2018
Rating: 5 / 5The cat performed well with everything working as expected. The only issue was batteries not lasting a night and having to run an engine both in the morning and again in the late afternoon when sailing and not motoring. Sails were easy enough to hoist and the electronics worked well. Lipari was a great spot to stop with a nice town to explore. But the nicest island I found was Panarea. Less tourists with very friendly locals. James, Australia, Jul 22nd, 2018
Rating: 4 / 5The Aeolian islands are a beautiful part of the world with many highlights. The standout was watching Stromboli erupt at night from nearby offshore. Sail Connections service was as always excellent. Russell, Australia, Jul 16th, 2018
Just a quick note to say we had a fabulous holiday and fantastic charter. The boat was perfect and the skipper Salvo and hostess Lucia were excellent could not fault anything. Salvo took us to some amazing places, always had our comfort and safety in mind, and was a lovely guy, Lucia was an amazing cook we ended up having most of our meals on board she was so good, also great company and very friendly and helpful. Everyone at North Sardinia Sail were also helpful and very friendly. Tony, Australia, Aug 31st, 2016
I just wanted to say thank you. We had a great time sailing though Italy and we appreciate your help putting that together. We had a blast on the trip! Cilento is beautiful and I'm really glad we went south before heading across the bay to Capri and Amalfi. Happy to share more stories/insights from the trip so you can help other explore this beautiful region, Thanks again. John & Leah, USA, Sep 30th, 2015
At Sail Connections we are always pleased to get client debriefs. We are especially delighted to receive positive reports, and here's one we must share. If considering the Gulf Of Naples/Amalfi Coast as a charter destination, this report is well worth a read.
There’s more to the Mediterranean than the high-profile destinations. In 2020, why not expand your horizons, get a little off the beaten tourist path and discover some understated gems. Here are this year's five best lesser-known Mediterranean sailing holiday destinations, all well worth considering for your next voyage.
For your next sailing holiday, particularly in the eastern Mediterranean but in some other surprising places as well, consider chartering a gulet. Today's gulet is now a modern charter boat built for a unique vacation experience enjoyed in complete passenger comfort and luxury living aboard.
On our 2018 Mediterranean charter we made a spot decision to spend time in Sicily. We chose to sail out of Palermo, a convenient base for going east to the Aeolian Islands or west and south the same distance to the Egadi Islands. But the main factor was a near-new Oceanis 38 available just 3 days out from charter.
After an uneventful passage from Villefranche-sur-Mer to Corsica, a 95 nautical mile passage to the port of Calvi, we had nine days to deliver our boat to its Ajaccio base. Just enough time to explore Corsica’s west coast and visit northern Sardinia, as long as we kept moving
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