Sardinia is an island of the Western Mediterranean Basin, larger than Corsica and second in size only to Sicily, and surrounded by the Tyrrhenian and Sardinian Seas. Inland its territory is predominantly hilly and mountainous, however interestingly overall the average altitude of the Island is low.
The weathering of this ancient and beautiful Island has caused the formation of many caves and grottos which add a surreal beauty to Sardinia especially from the many boat trips along the coast where they are most beautiful and awe inspiring and can which many can be entered with boats and Kayaks.
In the summer Sardinias nightlife comes alive not to the standard of Rome or Milan, but in the main centres you will find nightclubs, interesting bars and cafes, bands playing music in most touristy locations;
Olbia’s bars are overflowing every night. For a touch more class, sip a champagne or cocktail in the Costa Smeralda resort of Porto Cervo, where showing off in style is the name of the game…
Cagliari’s bar life is centred around the pavement cafés opposite the port, and spreading further up the hill and into the old town district, near the Port being the favoured place from which to watch life stroll by, with the chic late-night venues of the old town and citadel to carry on into the small early hours.
In Alghero Sardinian bar culture reaches its most interesting within a village setting, with a lively passeggiata and the old-town streets crammed with places to partake in a drink at every turn, The mojito being the favored summer drink here, The ancient walls beaming with the sounds of the various bands playing live both outside and inside the bars and cafes, a host of nightclubs are located on the outskirts with shuttle services to and fro to not interfere with the unique holiday atmosphere for the non-nightclub enthusiast in the ‘Historical Old Town’.
The inland city of Sassari also hosts a nightlife and bar scene but without the magic of beach, seaside and ports on their doorsteps such as Alghero, Olbia, Costa Smeralda and Cagliari
Culture & History
Sardinia is a very ancient land Island and very possibly perhaps the oldest of Italy, with a history as far back as the Cambrian period some 570 million years ago. Interestingly at one time in its history having a physical land link to Italy due to the different sea levels of the time, being part of a larger land mass and not the individual Island that you see today. Animals over time shrinking to be generally smaller than those of mainland due to the land separation over time, this phenomena also affecting humans as genetically, the Sardinians taking on shorter physical frames than their mainland counterparts.
The people of Sardinia from 1800 B.C. to 200 B.C. was known as the Nuragic people, they lived in stone dwellings and built the round conical towers which you can now see today, there are somewhere in the upwards of 7000 dotting the Sardinian landscape and are sun ominous with Sardinia.
Their ability to produce fine bronze artefacts being testament in many of the larger museums, These skills most likely learned from Etruscans on the neighbouring mainland, who would have bartered their knowledge for the raw materials plentiful on the island, Sardinia is rich in minerals the likes of coal, silver, lead, zinc and iron. This also had a negative effect as peoples came from far to exploit these natural reserves.
The Phoenicians, arrived here around the 9th century B.C., putting up settlements around Cagliari, gradually making their way to settle inland, followed by the Carthaginians in and around the 6th century B.C., and then the Greeks, later the Romans staked their claim with a conquest in 238 B.C.
In the time and centuries that followed, Sardinia was frequented by often fell prey by passing pirates and marauders, due to its highly strategic position in the centre of the Mediterranean. During this time the Sardinians made their base inland in the mountainous regions hidden away from the greedy clutches these dangerous visitors that came from the sea, raids such as these were a common occurrence along the coast of Sardinia right up until modern times.
It is not hard to imagine once one sets eyes on the various caves, bays and coves just how attractive they would have been to those wishing to hide the haul or themselves from prying eyes or passers, backed up by history and the many told and whispered from the lips of the old to the young. Glorious natural caves were a haven for many a pirate or marauder wishing to stash his haul or hideaway.
Language influences for the most part remaining being in inland locations a true Italian, it is said closer to Latin than their Italian counterparts on the Italian mainland, with the more coastal regions of Sardinia having their own unique language, the region of Sassari speaking Sassarese, Alghero taking on the language of Catalan Algherese (influenced by the Spanish Catalan dialect), the Gallura area dialect being influenced by the Genoan dialect, speaking Gallurese.
The Sardinian people were and still are mostly pastoral people most of the traditions and farming techniques and traditions and are very proud of this heritage having stayed with them for well over 3000 years. A drive around the country laying testament to that as with pass by with window down to hear the faint bells of the sheep and goats, occasionally noting the famous white sheep dog who lives with the flock to protecting them hidden away from view while the shepherds walk about over mounty outcrop, stick in hand purveying their flock. Fishing followed Farming and is now also a mainstay and financial asset to Sardinia drawing thousands tourist’s dollars per year to sample the fine dining experience of Sardinian seafood among other things.
Overall the Sardinian person is as diverse as any race on earth, with a history as rich and old and steeped in history as any other, Sardinia as a place a destination for those seeking something different promising to imprint its own pleasant brand in your memories for many years to come.