With a land area of 24.090 square kilometers, Sardinia is the second largest Italian Mediterranean island after Sicily. The area corresponds approximately to that of the federal state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.
Sardinia's wonderful landscape
It takes a long time to discover Sardinia's wonderful landscape. Mountains, evergreen macchia formations, nature parks and beautiful stretches of beach offer enough variety. - Visitors to Sardinia who travel to Olbia in the north-east of the island by cruise ship are spoiled for choice as to which day's destination they choose. Destinations in the 50-kilometer area of Olbia are particularly suitable for a day's excursion program.
The Arcipelago di La Maddalena
An attractive destination in this area is the one in the extreme northeast of Sardinia La Maddalena Archipelago. The archipelago between Sardinia and Corsica consists of 62 inhabited and uninhabited rocky islands and islets. The two islands are of touristic importance La Maddalena and Caprera.
View of Palau and La Maddalena
The island of La Maddalena
La Maddalena is the largest island in the archipelago at 52 square kilometers. Their main town is also called La Maddalena. The sparsely populated island presents itself outside of the village as a natural paradise with macchia and juniper trees. The coast is rugged and there are small, hidden bays everywhere.
La Maddalena's wild coast
Approximately 11.000 people live on the island. Most live in the port city of La Maddalena. The place is a typical Italian small town with a town hall, pedestrian zone, stairs and varied shops. There are also a variety of cafes and restaurants. The archipelago is a sailing area valued by sport skippers. In the evening the boats seek shelter in the harbor. There is no trace of the much maligned overtourism on or in La Maddalena.
Car ferries commute between the Sardinian port city of Palau and La Maddalena. The crossing takes 20 minutes and goes by very quickly; there is a lot to see while driving.
La Maddalena car ferry
In 2009, a G8 summit was to take place in the seclusion of the island. The Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi had a congress center and two 5-star hotels built for this purpose. After the summit it was planned to develop the hotel and conference complex into a high-quality holiday location. It turned out differently. At the last minute, the summit was moved to L'Aquila in Abruzzo. The dream of a high-class holiday region competing with the Costa Smeralda vanished.
Beach section on La Maddalena
One of the sights of La Maddalena is the Panoramic road. The 20 km long, winding panorama road circles the island far above sea level. The trip offers a wealth of fantastic views of La Maddalena, the surrounding islands and across to Corsica.
The island of La Caprera
Visitors can get from La Maddalena to Caprera via a 600 meter long dam. The island was the last residence of the Italian national hero and freedom fighter Giuseppe Garibaldi for 26 years. He bought the rugged granite island overgrown with pine forest, holm oaks and thick shrub vegetation. There he set up his comfortable retirement home with eight rooms and side rooms. Garibaldi died on Caprera in 1882. After his death, the manorial residence was converted into a museum.
It shows Garibaldi's living and working area, stables and technical equipment from that time. Garibaldi's simple tomb is part of the museum complex. The tomb has been a national Italian monument since 1890. Caprera is a magnet for nationally conscious Italians. For non-Italians, the island and the museum are also worth seeing. The museum gives a detailed interpretation of Garibaldi's residence. The surrounding wild landscape is free of charge. For us, a visit to the island is a lasting experience.
Garibaldi's simple grave
Distance Olbia - Palau 40 kilometers
The organized, multi-hour bus tour Olbia - La Maddalena - Caprera - Olbia cost 2019 euros in 65,00 with the provider Costa Crociere.
Museum opening times: Tuesday to Sunday 9:00am to 13:00pm and 14:00pm to 18:30pm The facility is closed on Mondays.